Thursday, December 9, 2010

Book Review: The Little Prince, illustrated by Joann Sfar

Title: The Little Prince
Author: Antoine de Saint-Exupery
Illustrator: Joann Sfar
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Release Date: 10/18/2010
ISBN: 0547338023

Joann Sfar (creator of Vampire Loves & The Little Vampire, among others) has given The Little Prince the graphic novel treatment, the first (as far as I know) for this timeless story. Undoubtedly this will be met with mixed initial reactions. Fans of Sfar will love seeing him apply his hand to this story while some others might raise an eyebrow at the idea of this being done.

The story is unchanged from the original book. The tale follows a young boy (the titular Little Prince) as he travels from his home & beloved flower in search of other planets. He finds very little that interests him & it is only when he arrives on Earth that he discovers beings that he can truly interact with.

There's quite a bit to like about this retelling. I'm a fan of Sfar's style, which is instantly recognizable in this book. For the most part his art style works to give the story a dreamy quality, although occasionally it does tend to be a little on the creepy side.

While I'll admit that I haven't read the original story, this rather creepy Prince panel just seemed a little out of place in the script.

Overall though the book is an enjoyable read & apart from one or two panels, Sfar's artwork really does fit the story well. The style is dreamlike & really does carry the emotions of the story quite well, from the initial introduction of the Prince & the Pilot to the "choose what you want to believe" ending.

This might not be for all readers or age groups, but if you're a fan of Sfar or of the original book you'll definitely want to check this out.

(ARC provided by NetGalley)

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