Friday, 14 March 2014

Asterix and Cleopatra (Book 6) by Rene Goscinny and Albert Uderzo & Translated by Anthea Bell (Asterix Publishing)

Asterix and Cleopatra (Book 6)

Written by Rene Goscinny (Translated by Anthea Bell)

Illustrated by Albert Uderzo

Published by Asterix Publishing

Is there a 'correct' time to introduce your child to comics? I've slowly been introducing them to Charlotte for a few years now - initially the attraction of bold and colourful comic spreads has now evolved into Charlotte wanting to tuck herself away with kid-friendly comics and graphic novels to absorb them in more depth and detail.

A while back I introduced her to the Tintin books, a huge childhood love of mine (actually I still love them to bits) and thought it was about time I showed her the other great childhood comic hero I adored - Asterix (and of course his mighty sidekick Obelix).

What better way than with Book 6 - where Asterix and Obelix meet Cleopatra, spectacularly clashing with the Roman Empire's attempts to secede Egypt with the dastardly evil (and huge-nostriled) Caesar waiting in the wings.

It's so easy to see why Asterix books are timeless, and still so well-loved by children of all ages. Charlotte couldn't get enough of the high adventure and though comic nerds will probably berate me for starting off mid-way through the Asterix books (now republished, re-inked and re-coloured beautifully), we couldn't resist the lure of Cleopatra's nose (and her fabulous hair!)

The book gave me a chance to fill in a bit of Asterix's back story, the mythical strength potion that helped Asterix's Gallic tribe resist Roman invasion, and the fantastic adventures she has yet to read. It made me extremely happy to see her so wrapped up in this, and wondering when we were going to investigate the rest of Asterix's adventures (cannot wait till we read Asterix in Britain).

As we've often said on this blog, the French have been light-years ahead of us when it comes to producing fantastic children's comics and heroes.

So returning to the question at the top of the review. When IS the best time to introduce your child to comics? Right now, start today and by all means start with one of the most important comic series ever produced - the mighty Asterix!

Charlotte's best bit: Some impromptu impropriety with the Sphinx. So THAT'S how it happened!

Daddy's Favourite bit: Rediscovering Asterix through Charlotte's eyes has been brilliant, I think it's about time we started a collection!