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by Peyo & illustrated by Peyo & Yvan Delporte

Age Range: 6 - 8

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2010
ISBN: 978-1-59707-207-6
Publisher: Papercutz

Smurf-reka! In anticipation of a film scheduled for release in 2011, this previously untranslated version of the cerulean gnomes’ first solo collection (1963) offers three tales: A fly’s contagious bite turns nearly all of the Smurfs into aggressive purple grunters (black ones in the French original—here the translator wisely keeps the color change of Hanna-Barbera’s 1981 TV adaptation); one Smurf’s determination to fly results in multiple crashes and calamities; another’s desire to find peace and quiet away from Smurf Village runs afoul of a mosquito and other hazards. Replete with pratfalls, butt-biting and like slapstick, the neatly squared-off comic-strip–style panels look small at first glance, but coated paper and high production values make both the dialogue and the brightly colored art easy to read. Reminiscent of Asterix in tone but shorter and less sophisticated, these episodes don’t show their age, and they should find a ready audience of recent Toon Book graduates. Also available: The Smurfs and the Magic Flute (ISBN: 978-1-59707-209-6; paper ISBN: 978-1-59707-208-3), a retitled reissue of their first appearance as characters in an earlier comics series. (Graphic fiction. 6-8)