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Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 08/01/2014 Philemon was originally published in the 1960s in the same French magazine as Asterix, and now TOON is introducing the fantasy comic to an American audience. Philemon is a daydreamy kid who tumbles into a well, only to find that it empties onto a magical island where anything can happen. Bottles sprout on trees, clocks erupt from the ground, and cottages grow like plants. When he meets Mr. Bartholomew, Philemon learns he is on the A, the first letter of the Atlantic emblazoned on world maps everywhere. After a few odd and pun-filled adventures, Mr. Bartholomew and Philemon finally find their way off the A, but before they can both make their escape, Philemon is slurped back through his well to find his disgruntled father impatiently waiting for him. Fred’s small panels are densely packed with swirling lines, elaborate tableaux, and cartoonish figures, all in a rich, jewel-tone palette. Combining the line work of Hergé’s Tintin with Dr. Seuss’ wacky figure style, this offbeat adventure story should be a great fit for middle-grade comic-book fans. - Copyright 2014 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 09/01/2014 GR 4–6—When young farm boy Philemon Is Sent To Fetch Water From The Well,he finds a mysterious bottled message floating at the bottom. Curious, he investigates the well, only to fall in. When he resurfaces, he finds himself marooned on an "A"-shaped deserted island with all sorts of strange creatures and plant life. Now stranded, he must rely on a hermit named Mr. Bartholomew and his centaur butler, Friday, to not only survive the island, but find a way back home. Modern audiences may find this book, originally published in 1972, a little odd, but fans of fantasy and adventure classics, such as Norton Juster's The Phantom Tollbooth, will feel right at home. Fred's surreal and dreamlike drawings really bring the world to life, and his attention to detail is evident on every page. Vivid, psychedelic colors make the illustrations pop and match the mood of the crazy world that he has created. Back matter includes notes about the various allusions made to other texts and artwork. Published for the first time in the United States, this work is a good additional purchase for those looking to build their graphic novel collections for middle graders.—Peter Blenski, Greenfield Public Library, WI - Copyright 2014 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.