Today I read the French book “Jefferson” written by Jean-Claude Mourlevat (and translated to English by Rob Schwartz).
The book is about two lands; one for the humans and the other for the animals. In the animal land, there is a hedgehog, named Jefferson. He is a happy-go-lucky, normal hedgehog. But one trip to the hair salon would change his life forever.
You see, Mr. Edgar, owner of the hair salon, was murdered with his own pair of scissors just before Jefferson set out to go to the salon. When Jefferson discovered the body, there was a nanny-goat sleeping there.
Jefferson plucked the scissors out of Mr. Edgar’s body, and then the nanny-goat decided to wake up to see Jefferson in a position that looked like he just stabbed a man who was lying dead next to him with a pair of scissors.
The nanny-goat ran out of the salon, publicly naming Jefferson as the murderer.
Jefferson then receives a text from his best friend, Gilbert the pig. He gets suspicious, because the text has adult-y language that Gilbert would never use.
He goes to a spot where “Gilbert” tells him to go, and sees that he was right. There were policemen!
When the policemen leave, he and Gilbert decide to make a living in a hut they built. They make it out of sticks and leaves. Then Jefferson thinks he should surrender, since he sees in the newspapers Gilbert brings him that the nanny-goat is spreading more lies, claiming that Jefferson had evil in his eyes, and had said “It’s your turn, old lady!”
Gilbert convinces him otherwise, though, and wants to catch the real murderers.
Then Jefferson realises that there were two humans who he saw driving very fast, away from the salon. Gilbert and Jefferson now both think that the humans killed Mr. Edgar.
So they went to the land of the Humans on a package tour, Jefferson being under a false identity.
Their goal? To catch the two humans and prove Jefferson innocent.
This book is very interesting, and I suggest you read it! I got it from the library, but you can buy it by clicking the link at the top of the post (it might be out of stock, since at time of writing, there is only 10 left). Even if it is out of stock when you’re reading this, just try read it, however you can. It’s an amazing book.
Here is my review:
Why did I like the book?
I liked that every character on the package tour had their own personality, with characters like Walter Schmitt (a boar) being jokey and talkative, and Simone the rabbit, who is really shy and looking for a partner.
I also liked the stunning illustration style. The shading and details are so good! I am definitely taking inspiration from this.
Which characters appealed to me the most?
My favourite character was Jefferson’s best friend, Gilbert the pig. He always convinces his friend to go on adventures with him, and at the end, he made Jefferson meet a certain famous person who Jefferson aspired to be like.
Is this book suitable for all readers?
I’d say the book is suitable for readers 9 and above.
Am I interested in reading more books by the same author?
If there are any English translated versions of more books by Jean-Claude Mourlevat, I would love to read them!
Thank you! This was my review of Jefferson by Jean-Claude Mourlevat. Bye for now!