Bryan Talbot’s most recent book, Alice in Sunderland, was hailed by the Guardian as one of the ten best graphic novels ever and acclaimed by critics all over the world. Before that, at the start of his career, he created the first ever steampunk graphic novel, The Adventures of Luther Arkwright.
In Grandville Talbot brings us another steampunk masterpiece. Inspired by the work of the nineteenth-century French illustrator Gérard, who worked under the pseudonym ‘Grandville’ and frequently drew anthropomorphic animal characters, it tells the story of detective Inspector LeBrock of Scotland Yard as he stalks a gang of murderers through the heart of Belle Epoque Paris. In this alternative reality France is the major world power and its capital is thronged with steam-driven hansom cabs, automatons and flying machines. The characters are mostly animals, though there is an underclass of humans, often referred to as ‘dough faces’, who resemble the ‘clear-line’ characters of Hergé’s Tintin books.
Visually stunning, Grandville is a fantastical and audacious rollercoaster ride that will add to Talbot’s reputation as one of the best graphic novelists in the world.