Thursday, March 10, 2011

Sardine in Outer Space

Another collaborative work from French graphic novelists Emmanuel Guibert and Joann Sfar, Sardine in Outer Space is the story of a little girl, Sardine, who is the most dangerous disobedient child in the universe. She is a member of a space pirate crew that includes her uncle Captain Yellow Shoulder, her cousin Little Louie, and her cat. The foursome travels through space having wild episodic adventures, dodging the authorities, visiting a galactic ice cream shop, shopping at a toy store, and escaping from a giant one-eyed, four legged beast.

The chief target of her actions is Supermuscleman, the "chief executive dictator of the universe," who looks like a mustachioed Captain Marvel--the Shazam! version--only without a cape. Supermuscleman is a tyrant who works with a mad scientist alien Doc Krok to capture Sardine, and it drives him crazy that this little girl constantly gets the better of him.

Guibert writes the stories here, and Sfar provides the art. Individually they have won multiple international awards for their works. For those inclined to learn more about him, Sfar keeps a blog where he shares his idiosyncratic and sometimes ribald thoughts.

Sardine in Outer Space has been received well. Brian Cronin appreciates that the children in the book are taken seriously as if they were adults and likens it to works by Roald Dahl, particularly Matilda. The Graphic Classroom's Kevin Hodgson appreciates the spunky protagonist and the humorous situations portrayed in the book. Kathleen Karr remarked on the creative use of literary stereotypes to create "clever, meandering plots" sprinkled with sight gags.

This is the first of a series of books, of which six are available in English. A preview and other reviews can be found here from the book's publisher First Second.

1 comment:

  1. wooow this novel called space pirates is really cool and awesome .