cover image Vampire Loves

Vampire Loves

Joann Sfar, . . Holt/First Second, $16.95 (186pp) ISBN 978-1-59643-093-8

Ferdinand is a vampire who lives in Lithuania, wears three-piece suits and receives regular visits from an adoptive "grandmother" witch who looks after his Siamese cat when he's off on trips to Paris. But none of this is any protection against the more mundane realities of being a newly single guy stuck forever in that period of new adulthood when hormones meet emotions and confusion results. Ferdinand's exploits, as detailed by award-winning French artist Sfar (Little Vampire Goes to School , The Rabbi's Cat ), read like a classic slacker tale—when he isn't sleeping in his coffin, Ferdinand carries his favorite records around in a messenger bag. Ferdinand's adventures and companions are at once otherworldly and oddly familiar. A tree-man has a crush on Ferdinand's ex-girlfriend, Lani, a girl/plant who cheated on Ferdinand with his best friend. Ferdinand alternately longs for and is angry at Lani, finds himself the object of a teenage vampire crush and cruises bars in search of new love. Just when the troubled relationships begin to seem too commonplace, Sfar slips in a magical detail about a golem or a crying tree. As usual, Sfar's artwork is effortlessly charming, filled with classically stylish ink hatching and lettering, for a story that is funny and unpredictable. (May)