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Best book about Tintin?

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Rhods1989
Member
#1 · Posted: 11 Jun 2021 14:25
Hi all,

We've all discussed our favourite Tintin books but I was wondering what everyone's favourite book is about Tintin? I have Michael Farr's Complete Companion but would love to know what other books about Tintin and/or Hergé you would recommend reading, too. There are quite a few out there so would be good to know which ones may not cover the same ground.

Thank you!
mct16
Member
#2 · Posted: 23 Jun 2021 22:20 · Edited by: mct16
Actual biographies of Herge include

"Hergé, Son of Tintin" by Benoit Peeters

"Tintin: Herge and His Creation" by Harry Thompson
tintiNZ
Member
#3 · Posted: 24 Jun 2021 06:17
The two biographies posted by mct16 are both very good.

Plus I would add: Herge - The man who created Tintin
By Pierre Assouline

The Real Herge - The inspiration behind Tintin
By Sian Lye
I am currently reading this book so can't say definitively just yet.

One book not to waste one cent on is:
The Metamorphoses of Tintin: or Tintin for Adults
Written under the pseudonym of Jean-Marie Apostolides.
I found it to be unintelligible rubbish!!
Balthazar
Moderator
#4 · Posted: 24 Jun 2021 22:36 · Edited by: Balthazar
I think this comic strip biography is brilliant:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Adventures-Herge-Jose-Louis-Bocquet/dp/1770460594/ref=mp_s_a_1_6?dchild=1&keywords=herge+biography&qid=1624568425&sprefix=herge&sr=8-6

You'll see from the reviews on Amazon that not everyone likes it, but I think the negative reviews are missing the point of what its author-illustrators are doing. It's not attempting to be a comprehensive biography, nor to ape Hergé's drawing style. It's more of a series of key moments or telling moments from a life, and plays really nicely between the reality of Hergé's life and his fictional creation, with playful and apt references to the Tintin books seeping into the reality. Maybe some of these fleeting episodes from his life are easier to fully understand if you've already read a more comprehensive traditional biography, though they're generally self-explanatory.

I haven't actually read the Pierre Assouline biography, nor the Benoit Peeters one. The Harry Thompson one is very well written and readable, even though (unauthorised as it was and written without the cooperation of Hergé's estate) it's occasionally factually inaccurate, particularly on the details of Hergé's private life. But maybe that's OK when the ins and outs of Hergé's romantic life hardly seem entirely relevant to his work, nor any of our business! I'm more interested in the processes of how he produced his stories and artwork, and there maybe aren't enough fully detailed and knowledgeable books about that in English.
tintiNZ
Member
#5 · Posted: 29 Jun 2021 00:20
Further to my post from last week, I have just finished reading the book The Real Herge - The inspiration behind Tintin.

It is a good easy read ( as one would expect from a journalist), summarising Herge's life in chronological order.

However, there is perhaps nothing new that the author, Sian Lye, supplies that has not already been written about and well covered by others.
There is quite a strong focus on the trials and tribulations of Herge's life, especially the crisis of his marriage and mental health issues.

The DW cover is nice and attractive with a picture of a sturdy leather travel bag and stamps depicting the key characters of Tintin.
I found it a little disappointing that the photos within the book were all downloaded from the internet- mostly wikimedia commons. Of the 27 photos- 2 were of the Ile d'Or !!. ( the inspiration for the Black Island). But, in fairness, with the book being published in 2020 that was the world we were in with COVID restrictions.

Still, it is a nice reference for any Tintinologist to have in their library.
Rhods1989
Member
#6 · Posted: 29 Jun 2021 14:23
Thanks everyone! Some great suggestions and even though I've seen most of them on Amazon or whatnot, it's great to know which ones are actually decent. Has anyone read Tintin: Hergé's Masterpiece by Pierre Sterckx? That looks good as well and has been translated by Michael Farr.
jock123
Moderator
#7 · Posted: 29 Jun 2021 17:22
Rhods1989:
Has anyone read Tintin: Hergé's Masterpiece by Pierre Sterckx?

Yes, it's a very good book, and has stunning reproduction of the art-work, so really shows off the beauty of what Hergé did - where possible they have used new high-resolution scans of original colour-work and married it to the black-and-white line art, so it has never looked better.
The writing is good too, and looks at not just the "how" of "how it was done", but the "why" of "why we like it".
Rhods1989
Member
#8 · Posted: 2 Jul 2021 14:27
Brilliant, thank you. That's great to know! I'll have to buy a copy to read once I've finished the Complete Companion. Thank you!
Rhods1989
Member
#9 · Posted: 7 Jul 2021 16:59
Is there much difference between The Art of Hergé by Michel Daubert and the three Art of Hergé volumes by Philippe Godin? Is there one you'd recommend over the other or are both sets worth getting? Sorry for all the questions - thanks in advance!
jock123
Moderator
#10 · Posted: 7 Jul 2021 23:11 · Edited by: jock123
Rhods1989:
Is there much difference between The Art of Hergé by Michel Daubert and the three Art of Hergé volumes by Philippe Godin?

Yes; other than the name, and the general subject matter, they don't have the same purpose.
The Goddin is a condensed version of the seven volume French Hergé - chronologie d'une oeuvre, a series which is intended to be a comprehensive overview of Hergé's life and work.
The Daubert is a book designed around the collection at the Hergé Museum, and is effectively a celecbration of that institue.
There may be some overlap (Hergé only has one body of work, after all), but the presentation of the material and the insight varies.

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