Friday, August 5, 2016

In Which Comics Come to My Lady Bibliophile

The old world has ended.

The new world has just begun.

In an unprecedented move, Lady Bibliophile added Tintin to her Summer reading list and ordered it from the library. She even braved the children's section to find another volume when it turned out she didn't get the volume she wanted. In spite of not finding Tintin Comes to America, she took her books home and dove in shortly thereafter.

(Also, her sister stole one and READ AHEAD. AHEM.)

So here's what she thought of Tintin.

(And yes, she'll switch back to first person now.)

The Book 
The Adventures of Tintin, Volume 5--containing, Land of Black Gold, Destination Moon, Explorers On the Moon.

Land of Black Gold--When cars start mysteriously exploding, Tintin and Snowy head off to Khemed by boat to investigate. While the terrible Thompson twins start their own investigative trek through the desert, Tintin exhibits his prowess once again as he enters an oil war and the case of a kidnapped boy.

Destination Moon--When their friend Professor Calculus disappears, Captain Haddock and Tintin follow him to the land of Syldavia where they find he's the primary inventor of a top-secret trial rocket to the moon. But when spies enter the compound and Professor Calculus suffers loss of memory, it may not be easy to put the first explorers on the moon.

Explorers on the Moon--Tintin, Professor Calculus, and Captain Haddock are all passengers on the first rocket to the moon. It's the chance of a lifetime for all of them, but their task won't be easy. Stowaways, oxygen deprivation, and the dangers of taking off and landing a rocket all stand between them and their safe return to earth. Will this be Tintin's last adventure?

My Thoughts

For my first foray into Tintin, of course it would be up top to ask who my favorite characters are. Tintin's an adorable investigator with an iron head, and as other reviewers have said, a character with unswerving faithful integrity. He's a good audience lead character. Snowy is an adorable grump, and I think the Thompson twins are pretty cute, mixing up their words and getting themselves into terrible scrapes. Professor Calculus is also endearing, with his constant need of someone to take care of him. Abdullah, however, is a terrible child, and it gives credit to Tintin that he helped him as long as he did.

In spite of two dimensional villains and a tendency to resolve crisis points for Tintin with fast, easy fixes (there's probably an official term for that. I haven't learned it yet.) the stories are nonstop interesting. Comic books force you to go from one suspense point to another. No one's going to stick around for a boring comic book, so everything moves at a tight pace. I appreciated the transition break points that made it possible to put the book down and pick it up at a logical point again.

At first I found the pictures overwhelming. There's so many on each page, and you have to take them in fairly quickly, but being a complete comic novice, I didn't know how to do that. However, I sped up fairly quickly, and by the time I got partway through Land of the Black Moon, it was grand fun to discover the threads of similarity that run through the Tintin's clothing choices. Herge put Tintin in disguises that still make it easy for the reader to identify him as Tintin, simply by using the same basic colors for his costumes.

Tintin has some elements that make it far from a little kid's comic book. You'll find very occasional language, though not much. Captain Haddock's constant whiskey drinking habit wasn't really a lot of fun, and there was a dark plot ending in one of the books that I skimmed because I didn't want to deal with it at the time. However, on the whole these books are an entertaining, brand new world of colorful fun. I'd definitely like to read more, and I can't wait to see how the movie turns out.


  1. Hooray! So glad you enjoyed them. There are many more for your enjoyment :). Did you get to know Castafiore yet?

    1. I look forward to reading more!! I don't remember Castafiore, so I think probably not....

      This was a perfect comic book to love in your childhood. It's a lot of fun. :)

  2. Yay! I'm glad you liked them! =D We have almost all of the books, and I've read them several times. And yes, the Thompson twins are hilarious!

    1. How fun that you own them! That's a priceless collection. And I see tonight that there's a Tintin book translated into Irish (Cigars of Pharaoh) which would be terrific to read.

      If only I could read Irish.


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