Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Review: The Professor's Daughter by Sfar and Guibert

Thanks for the web and great book bloggers, I get to hear about graphic novels that I wouldn't know about otherwise.  I recently saw Joann Sfar and Emmanuel Guibert's graphic novel The Professor's Daughter reviewed on the blogosphere and ran out to check it out.  To be honest, I struggle to find graphic novels on my own, so I sure appreciate seeing them reviewed elsewhere.  From time to time, a nice graphic novel can get me back into my reading groove!

Synopsis:  From Goodreads, "Joann Sfar and Emmanuel Guibert bring the true spirit of Victorian London to life in this witty, engaging, sepia-colored tale of a proper but mischievous young girl and the mummy who opens his eyes for the first time in 3,000 years and instantly falls in love with her. Will the love between Lillian and Imhotep IV survive when their fathers, the London police, and even the Royal Archeological Society are all determined to keep them apart?"

Review:  The Professor's Daughter is a quick piece of "what if" set in Victorian London.  Who hasn't looked at a mummy in a museum and wondered about Ancient Egypt or what that person was like in their time?  Even more interesting is to think about is what would happen if they perked up and rose from the dead?  In this graphic novel, Imhotep IV happens to be alive, all taped up, and out on the town with one of the curator's daughter, young Lillian.  They have a lovely day and in a very withheld, Victorian way, fall in love.  

I really enjoyed this short graphic novel.  The story develops really quickly, but has this lovely subtle development.  Honestly, I didn't catch the love story element and actually just thought Lillian and Imhotep were great friends and enjoying a day out in London!  There was a fun bit of tension in the story when Imhotep realizes they want to get him back in the museum, but it wasn't so supernatural or over the top that you couldn't kind of sit back and just watch the story unfold.  The sepia colors and subdued Victorian story were just a fun overlay on this tale.  It ended in a way that felt a teeny bit abrupt to me, but on the other hand, I'm not sure what else I wanted to happen.  On the whole, it was a fun diversion and nice idea for a graphic novel.

*FTC Disclosure:  Review is based off a library copy of the book.


  1. I read my first graphic novel last year and was surprised by how much I liked it. I have been looking for others, and this sounds like one I might like.
    Thanks for highlighting it!

  2. I noticed you were reading this on Goodreads and immediately put it on hold at the library! I can't wait to read it.

  3. This actually sounds really interesting. I must see if my library has a copy!

  4. Seems slightly reminiscent of a small part of the 2010 French film "The Extraordinary Adventures of Adèle Blanc-Sec/Les aventures extraordinaires d'Adèle Blanc-Sec" (film website.....http://www.adeleblancsec-lefilm.com/).

    This film, itself, was based largely upon a comic book series by Tardi, although that comic book art is not at all similar to this graphic novel's far more attractive and subtle art.


  5. The Book Girl--These short graphic novels give such a nice, quick break in a reading schedule. This one was really fun, so I hope you like it!

    Heidenkind--I think you would really like this one. It's super fast, and has a funny little message here, but has a great style to it. Can't wait to hear what you think!

    Kailana--It's fun. I hope you find it!

    Carla--You are full of such great information. Thank you SO much! I love your comments. :)