Abelard is a long-legged boy-chick who lives in a marsh where there are few women, in a fictional early twentieth-century Eastern Europe. A brief encounter with a bird-girl leaves him besotted and determined to win her affection. Abelard is given dubious advice: "To seduce a gal like Eppily, you got to offer her the moon. Or, at the very least, a bouquet of stars."
|"Nobody's innocent!" says Gaston.|
Being a total innocent, Abelard decides to travel to America, where he's heard that flying machines have been invented. He hopes to get to the moon in one. I almost gave up on the book at this point, because it seemed rather too sentimental for my taste. Luckily, I didn't, because things picked up after about 30 pages. Abelard encounters many obstacles on his journey, including being severely assaulted for being perceived as a "faggot" and a "poet." A grumpy man-bear named Gaston becomes Abelard's unlikely friend.
|While travelling with Gypsies, Abelard consults Madame Zaza.|
Dillies' dark contour lines and brushy stroke style can be seen here.
This charming fable, translated from French by Joe Johnson, is suitable for Grade 9 to adult.
Readalikes: Good-bye, Chunky Rice (Craig Thompson); Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz (Eric Shanower and Skottie Young); Robot Dreams (Sara Varon); Bone (Jeff Smith); The Little Prince Graphic Novel (Antoine de Saint-Exupery and Johann Sfar); and Set to Sea (Drew Weing).