Cover image for Carnet de voyage
Carnet de voyage
Thompson, Craig, 1975-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Marietta, GA : Top Shelf Productions, [2004]

Physical Description:
224 pages : all illustrations ; 19 cm
General Note:
"First printing, July 2004"--T.p. verso.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR UG 5.8 2.0 86080.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PN6727.T48 C37 2004 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



Craig Thompson spent three months traveling through Barcelona, the Alps, and France, as well as Morocco, researching his next graphic novel, Habibi. Spontaneous sketches and a travelogue diary document his adventures and quiet moments, creating a raw and intimate portrait of countries, culture and the wandering artist.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

After the success of the autobiographical Blankets BKL Je 1 & 15 03, Thompson spent two months in Europe on a publicity tour, with a side trip to Morocco to research a future project. In his preface to this sketchbook-diary of his travels, he warns that it isn't his next book but just a little snack. Thompson's snack is more substantive, however, than most comics artists' main courses. He dashes off wonderfully expressive and evocative drawings of France, Barcelona, Marrakech, and the Alps, even after he loses his pens and has to buy cheap, secondhand felt-tips. He presents an earnest but self-aware account of the first exposure of a self-styled bumpkin lad to exotic locales with a facility that belies his youth and effectively depicts solo-traveler's woes both familiar-- loneliness, insomnia, diarrhea--and particular--career-threatening arthritis aggravated by nonstop drawing. The melancholy of Blankets is here, too, for Thompson's lover had left him just before he departed. His consequent moments of self-pity are a bit self-indulgent, but they go with the territory of diary keeping. --Gordon Flagg Copyright 2004 Booklist

Publisher's Weekly Review

"They say `Wherever you go, there you are....' I thought with Morocco, I'd be setting out on some exotic adventure, but it turns out I'm just a simple, quiet fellow." So writes Thompson in this travel sketchbook chronicling two months of wandering through Africa and Europe, sometimes as tourist, sometimes as a famous cartoonist on tour. Rather than a narrative follow-up to the award-winning Blankets, this diary reveals both Thompson's creative strengths and weaknesses. Although more or less spontaneous, the book still shapes the material into something of a narrative, the continuing themes being Thompson's self-conscious love of beauty, his sense of isolation and the gradual physical deterioration of his hands due to arthritis and over-drawing. Thompson is honest enough to confront his own self-absorption (he makes constant references to his own whininess), but this recognition reveals that Blankets' na?vet? is more studied than it first appears. Many of the elements that made Blankets so successful are here, not least among them Thompson's incredible, lush line-work and telling detail. Every person he meets is captured with a keen eye and a lively brush, and entries such as one recounting his fascination with Gaud!'s architecture in Barcelona, or a day spent with fellow cartoonist Blutch discussing artistic muses, are both thought provoking and touching. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal Review

Adult/High School-In 2004, the author, a cartoonist from Oregon, traveled to Europe on a book-signing tour, with a side trip to Morocco. Rather than writing a conventional journal, he kept notes in the form of drawings and cartoons. He shows readers how he was met in France by friends, fans, and publisher representatives, and tells of larking about-finding magic, meaning, and synchronicity-in Paris and the countryside. When he moved on to Morocco, his experience was darker as he struggled to relate to a more alien and less-welcoming culture. There he encountered everything from homesickness to diarrhea to fractured conversations, but in time he saw more of the country and learned how to get around. Back in Europe, he continued his book tour in Geneva and Barcelona, and saw the Alps and the south of France. Along with images of people and places, he shares, with winningly self-deprecating humor, his interior journey of emotional ups and downs. Black-and-white images range in style from realistic sketches to surrealistic riffs to funny cartoons, sometimes working together visually and thematically to create layers of depth and to amplify a point. Combined with telegraphic captions, the art captures to perfection and with a great sense of immediacy what it's like to be young and on one's own on a foreign adventure. By turns lighthearted and profound, Carnet is an illuminating and charming experience that should have broad appeal.-Christine C. Menefee, Fairfax County Public Library, VA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.