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Grandville Bête Noire (Grandville #3)

3.96  ·  Rating Details ·  392 Ratings  ·  67 Reviews
The baffling murder of a famed Parisian artist in his locked and guarded studio takes the tenacious Detective Inspector LeBrock of Scotland Yard and his faithful adjunct, Detective Sargent Ratzi, into the cut-throat Grandville art scene to track the mysterious assassin. As the body count mounts and events spiral out of control, the investigation points to Toad Hall, where ...more
Hardcover, 104 pages
Published December 11th 2012 by Dark Horse Books (first published December 6th 2012)
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Grandville Bete Noire
Disclaimer – I got a copy via Netgalley.

I really hate star systems. I do. I believe many, maybe even most, readers do. Then Amazon has to go and foul things up by making a three star review a bad review, when it really isn’t.

I’m conflicted about this graphic novel. I really am. I’m waffling between three and four stars. I haven’t read the others in the series, so I think that if I had, I might be more secure about giving this four stars. But I haven’t, however, after readin
Sep 21, 2016 Lauri rated it it was amazing
Kolmas osa nutika mägrast detektiivi seiklustest aurupunk-Pariisis, mille elanikud on antropomorfsed loomad. Kummardusi tehakse siia ja sinna, näiteks põhikurjam konn on pärit klassikalisest Kenneth Graham'i "The Wind in the Willows'ist".
Ei, väga vinge sari, kiirelt mu personaalse edetabeli tippu tõusnud, kui mitte lausa esikohale...
Nicola Mansfield
Jan 05, 2013 Nicola Mansfield rated it it was amazing
Reason for Reading: I loved the whole premise of this series: animal fantasy, steampunk, crime mystery, and even though I hadn't read the previous issues, the cover art made me want to read this *now*.

What a fantastic comic. Steeped in allusions to James Bond, Wind in the Willows and Sherlock Holmes this pastiche of anthropomorphic animals had me intrigued from the get-go. Set in a steampunk Paris which is alluded to as "Grandville" in this alternate world where animals rule supreme and human be
Feb 04, 2016 Laura rated it it was ok
Steampunk, mystery, adventure, characters are anthropomorphic animals, lovely art, but it lost me at the gratuitous female nudity. This is not a prudish complaint. The scene is very tastefully done and fits the story - but why does a female badger have a sexy human body? She's a badger, he's a badger, in a world where badgers wear clothes I'm sure the readers are intelligent enough to get that he'd be titillated by a female badger with no clothes without having to show us a naked human woman ...more
Mar 08, 2016 Jonathan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: graphic-novels
Book 3 finds Detective Inspector LeBrock and his trusty sidekick Detective Sergeant Roderick Ratzi up against the formidable Baron Aristotle Krapaud, a fabulously wealthy industrialist and criminal mastermind who is intent on overthrowing the current regime in France and taking ultimate power for himself. Heedless of their involvement is a group of scientists who are creating machines that the Baron will use to achieve his aims. All very dastardly.

My favorite bits in this lusciously illustrated
Nov 01, 2013 Raina rated it it was amazing

I thought about dropping this series, but I'm so glad I didn't.

This one plays with ideas ripped from art history - particularly featuring the rise of abstract art as a counter to the political content of some of the figurative art during the cold war (see for some of the real story). Lebrock tangles with corporate villains, mad scientists and depressed artists in a Bond-style adventure. Workers rights, racism, and class dynamics feature prominentl
Jan 02, 2016 Sara rated it really liked it
The first Grandville had a more nebulous alignment with Sherlock Holmes, but the newer two are very distinctly an homage. Still, LeBrock is great, the art is great, and the alternate history Talbot has invented is fascinating (and not TOO steampunk; just enough). There's a ton of new material hiding in there for future Grandville books. And it's always fun to read something from Dark Horse.
Jenny (Reading Envy)
One reviewer labeled this as Wind in the Willows meets James Bond, only she thought it was a good thing. I couldn't get into this story about steampunk animals, with a prostitute badger (with human feet? what?) and a godfather toad.
Seizure Romero
This is the third in the Grandville series (I use "series" because I hope there are many more). I didn't know there was a second. Where the hell have I been? What else have I missed? How are books getting published that I don't know about?
Alex Sarll
The sledgehammer politics continue to vex me, but this volume does feature a scene with a toad smoking a pipe, so it can't be all bad.
Oct 02, 2012 Carrie rated it liked it
I knew I disliked Jackson Pollock, but now I know why! :)
Sam Quixote
Dec 04, 2012 Sam Quixote rated it liked it
An artist designing a mural is found murdered under suspicious circumstances. When the commission of the mural is passed on and the second artist is also murdered, foul play is suspected! Archie LeBrock and his faithful sidekick Roderick Ratzi are once more on the trail of crime in the steampunk city of Grandville.

This new installment in the Grandville series feels the most strained of the three books; it doesn’t fly along on its original, creative energy like the first 2 books, rather it plods
Mar 30, 2013 Otherwyrld rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: graphic-novel
Grandeville Bete Noire is the third (and probably final) part of this alternative history, steampunk, anthropomorphic graphic novel by Bryan Talbot.

In this story, the one-badger-army Detective Inspector Le Brock of Scotland Yard takes on big business in the form of Baron Krapaud. The Baron is Toad of Toad Hall dressed up as Ernest Blofeld (complete with pet - toad!), and he is quite clearly a villain in this work, as are his cohorts in business. This might make uncomfortable reading for those p
Okay, to be honest, I'd give the ebook version three stars. I had never tried a graphic novel on my Nook and I won't soon be repeating the experience. Other ebook readers may have better luck but the words were absolutely tiny on the screen and pixelated almost to a point past readability when enlarged. However, the story was an interesting one that pulled me in and almost made me forget my frustrations.
It's hard not to compare any graphic novel using animals as the main characters to the classi
I thoroughly enjoyed this third foray into DI Archibald LeBrock's world of anthropomorphic animals and alt-history steampunk noir. This time, an old friend requests LeBrock's help in solving a murder in Paris that has the Paris force stumped. This leads to a tangled web of millionaire industrialists and sinister plots.

Talbot really goes to town on the worst excesses of industrialists and capitalists in this volume, calling on real world examples, which he describes in the afterword, for those of
One of my Christmas gifts this year was Bryan Talbot’s Grandville: Bete Noir. It’s an amusing steampunk James Bond with a badger as the hero and a Wodehousian sidekick. This is volume three, in which Toad from Toad Hall tries to take over the French empire with automatons, dreadnoughts, and sneering villainy. A couple quick thoughts:

- The art is clean and lovely — Talbot’s usual style. He’s particularly good at drawing expressive reaction shots.
- I love the notion of the doughfaces–people–prot
Fantasy Literature
Grandville, Bete Noire, Bryan Talbot’s third steam-punk themed graphic novel, has the same lavish detail and striking use of color as the first two. English Badger D.I. Archie LeBrock is back, as rough-and-tumble as ever, and in this book we spend a bit more time with Quayle or “Q,” a brilliant inventor adept at stealth weapons, like a smoking pipe that is really a bomb. It’s a nice wink in the direction of Ian Fleming.

The plot is slimmer and more predictable than the first two, and a large part
Matti Karjalainen
Bryan Talbotin "Grandville Bete Noire" (Jonathan Cape, 2012) on kolmas osa rikoskomisario LeBrockin seikkailuista kertovassa tarinalinjassa; tällä kertaa LeBrock tovereineen tutkii taidemaalarin murhaa, ja joutuu taasen keskelle veristä ja sotkuista vyyhteä, joka johtaa suuria suunnittelevan teollisuuspampun portaille.

Steampunkahtavaan vaihtoehtotodellisuuteen sijoittuva sarjakuva on tottuun tapaan upeasti kuvitettu, eikä vauhdikkaassa ja toiminnallisessa tarinassakaan ole mitään vikaa, vaikka s
Lucie Paris
Nov 14, 2012 Lucie Paris rated it liked it
A very well designed graphic thriller, captivating and original.

The reader follow the adventures of a sort of Sherlock Holmes with the head of a raccoon equipped with gadgets worthy of James Bond in a race against evil.

Crimes galore on a background of the the French History of the Napoleonic era with touches of contemporary politics very well placed and very subtle.

A mixed retro and modern also with animals/characters dressed in period costume alongside robots and tanks in the streets of Paris.
Sheila Beaumont
This is the best entry so far in this awesome graphic-novel detective series. It incorporates so many of my favorite literary things: anthropomorphic talking animals, Sherlock Holmes & Watson, steampunk, alternate history, The Wind in the Willows, mystery & crime fiction, fantasy, and adventure.

The artwork is excellent, as is the storyline, and I loved the characters, especially Detective Inspector LeBrock of Scotland Yard and his loyal assistant, Detective Roderick Ratzi. The egotistica
Sep 15, 2012 Tintaglia rated it really liked it
Shelves: e-books, arcs, comics
Mi sono innamorata.
Il DI Archibald LeBrock è un John Luther procione e più rustico in una meravigliosa Parigi steampunk.
Cosa desiderare di più, se sia le meravigliose pagine che la trama avventurosa e intelligente (splendida l'esposizione sull'innocuità dell'arte astratta, sostenuta e diffusa dalle classi dirigenti per la sua impossibilità di generare significato politico - storia vera, a quanto pare) portano la firma di quel maestro che risponde al nome di Brian Talbot?
Che maestro si conferma,
Mikael Kuoppala
Jan 15, 2014 Mikael Kuoppala rated it really liked it
An impossible closed room murder in a bohemian artist community. Loving the concept; it fits perfectly with the peculiar victorian world of the Grandville series.

"Bête Noire" is an entertaining read, not quite as politically resonant as its predecessors, but clever in other ways. Talbot can take ridiculous concepts and execute them with such a perfect mix of unapologetic camp and pure style, he can communicate a commendable amount of substantial story without the reader getting distracted by all
Lesley Arrowsmith
Aug 31, 2013 Lesley Arrowsmith rated it really liked it
Lots of nice little jokes in the text and pictures, from Paddington Bear at the beginning to Jackson Pollo the cockerel abstract painter. In fact, there were lots of little painting jokes. And a wonderfully embarrassing dinner party for LeBrock.
Also, there's a good explanation for why LeBrock is quite so broken up about the death of the Divine Sarah in the previous book when he'd only known her for such a short time.
I do hope Bryan Talbot will return to the Grandville universe (hopefully with so
Apr 07, 2013 Andrew rated it really liked it
Bryan Talbot's Grandville series continues to improve with each installment. Bête Noire is easily the strongest of the first three episodes. The story is pure pulp, but inspired by a strong pedigree of British thriller authors such as Doyle, Fleming, and Christie. Talbot also fills the story and artwork with clever nods to comic art history and anthropomorphic-animal classics (such as The Wind in the Willows, to note this installment's most obvious reference). There is something special about ...more
Nicholas Whyte
May 24, 2013 Nicholas Whyte rated it really liked it
Shelves: sf, comics, hugo, 2013, 1305[return][return]another in Talbot's alternate history of Grandville, where most people are anthropomorphised animals and England is only now recovering from two hundred years of French rule after defeat at Waterloo. As well as taking us to the dark heart of political conspiracy, with overtones of Tintin (and also, frankly, Dangermouse), Talbot reflects art history too in his distorted gaze; he refers in an afterword to the CIA's funding of Abstract Expre ...more
Jun 23, 2013 Sunil rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2013
Talbot throws a bit of James Bond into his genre mishmash, as the story begins with Toad mwahahaha-ing in full Bond villain mode about his evil plan to take over the government with automata. Meanwhile, this book's case finds LeBrock investigating the mysterious murder of an artist. The romance in these books continues to be very cliché, but I thought this book had the strongest and most original story when it came to the villain's plan, which, as the Afterword points out, was inspired by ...more
Feb 12, 2013 A.M. rated it really liked it
These books are such a different thing... glossily beautiful to hold in your hand; the colours, the texture (yes, I find myself brushing my fingertips across a page occasionally) the anthropomorphic animals who rule the world - with dough faces as they rudely refer to us humans... it's wonderful. In this one he had many jokes - Paddington Bear drunk in the back ground with his little suitcase, the legless frog beggar, Nestor - captain haddock's butler from the tintin books made an appearance, ...more
Saruuh Kelsey
Dec 30, 2012 Saruuh Kelsey rated it it was amazing
As exciting and captivating as ever, Grandville Bete Noire, much like all of the Grandville books, was a book that I was incapable of putting down. Thrilling and fun and fast paced, I had to read it in one sitting.

With equal parts conspiracy, crime, heinous villains, beautiful settings, and bewilderingly-attractive badgers, this is a book, and a series, I'd recommend to anyone.

Can't wait for the next installment and to find out what will happen between Billie and LeBrock. Will they? Won't they?
Mar 24, 2016 Sarah rated it liked it
Picked this up because of attractive badger lady on the front. Did not know there were two books before this. Luckily, the first two must not be terribly essential. I'll probably go back and read them, though, because this was neat.

I was not a fan of the super-socialism, and of course you have all the rich guys being evil and corrupt (because anyone who has more than me must be evil, right?), but taken as fantasy I was able to work with it.

The idea of anthropomorphic animals solving crimes is p
Aug 04, 2013 Glennis rated it liked it
I read this for the Hugo ballot voting but I definitely want to find the previous volumes and read them. An alt universe with anthropomorphic animals and humans where the humans are second class citizens. The Victorian steampunk setting is fully developed and used throughout the book. LeBrock and his assistant go over to Paris to help with a murder investigation of an artist. I think what I liked the best was the afterword where the writer explained how a piece of history set this graphic novel ...more
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Talbot began his comics work in the underground comix scene of the late 1960s. In 1969 his first work appeared as illustrations in Mallorn, the British Tolkien Society magazine, followed in 1972 by a weekly strip in his college newspaper.

He continued in the scene after leaving college, producing Brainstorm Comix, the first three of which formed The Chester P. Hackenbush Trilogy (a character rework
More about Bryan Talbot...

Other Books in the Series

Grandville (4 books)
  • Grandville (Grandville #1)
  • Grandville Mon Amour (Grandville #2)
  • Grandville Noël (Grandville, #4)

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