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Get a Life (Monsieur Jean)

3.7  ·  Rating Details ·  195 Ratings  ·  33 Reviews

A celebration of the sophistication, wit and charm found only in the singular collaboration of French cartooning team

For twenty years, French cartoonists Philippe Dupuy and Charles Berberian have collaborated on every aspectsharing both the writing and drawingof their highly acclaimed Mr. Jean short stories, creating one of the most endearing, clever, and readable series

Hardcover, 144 pages
Published July 11th 2006 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (first published May 15th 2006)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 348)
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Sam Quixote
Sep 25, 2014 Sam Quixote rated it it was amazing
Comics for the most part are a collaborative medium usually with one person writing, another drawing, another inking, colouring, lettering, and so on. Rarely do you find two people who work on a comic and do both the writing and drawing together, but such is the case with Charles Berberian and Phillippe Dupuy. In fact, their drawing/writing styles are so similar, they’ve said that even they have a hard time figuring out who did what in their comics!

Get a Life collects the first of their acclaim
May 13, 2015 Raina rated it liked it
Amusing anecdotal snapshots of the life of a struggling artist and his dating, familial, friend, and professional life in Paris.
Enjoyed seeing Paris from the inside, and yay full-color. Also appreciated a few comics which featured his internal struggles with longterm friendships.
May 02, 2011 Christopher rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a wonderful surprise. Beautiful cartooning, and Jean is so human it hurts. Oh, and it is SUPER Frenchy. As in the book practically smells like brioche and expensive cigarettes.
Aug 31, 2012 Dominique rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Couldn't the main character have a worse, more pathetic, depressed life?
I sort of have a thing for those characters and still have some tolerance left for Graphic Novels and their depressed story-lines, so therefore I wanted to give this book my 5 stars and possibly move on the happier Graphic Novels.

The reason for the 5 star rating is:
The graphics are great, some parts are intriguing and hilarious, and the stories end after each chapter. I think a continuations story of a depressed being would
Jun 18, 2007 Andrew rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
this review first appeared on []

with a hour to kill while i waited for my tyre to be replaced and wheels aligned, i wandered into town to visit the library. they're renovating the library at the moment and that day the entire non-fiction floor was closed. this meant i had to browse the fiction section instead of the usual art and design sections. fortunately, the fiction section contains a small but rather well-maintained graphic novel shelf. so i ended up leaving t
Jan 13, 2012 Jennifer rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Where can I find more of the Monsieur Jean books? I loved the previous autobiographical book by the two artist collaborators and was pleased to find a copy of their fiction work. It's fun to see how their lives are intertwined with that of their fictional hero, a young French single guy who weaves through storylines about dealing with his landlady, dealing with insomnia, dealing with his friends, and dealing with dating. In my exploration of single life through reading, I rather loved getting th ...more
Sep 25, 2015 Erik rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: comics-other
Essentially a series of ordinary stories about an ordinary French man as he lives and works through his late twenties and early thirties. The stories are well told, but this is only a small collection of the Monsieur Jean comics and it didn’t do anything to make me want to pick up more. I did really like the art though, and it’s pretty impressive how Dupuy and Berberian seamlessly share both writing and drawing duties.
I'm new to the graphic novel genre, as I have only recently discovered they are not all about Japanese vampires battling evil and searching for large breasts.

Get A Life is something else all together. It has humor but it is small, gentle humor. It doesn't have thick plots, no deep pains or truths to exorcise.

It's just a French guy living a French life flanked by interchangeable attractive women and so-so friends. In fact, all the characters are so-so people, no heroes and few villains, very real
Aug 08, 2016 Dace rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An unexpected discovery that made me laugh and reminded me why I loved comics when I was a kid. I enjoyed the authors' humour. I guess at least with some episodes everyone can tolerate what made it even more enjoyable.
Diane Ramirez
Oct 10, 2008 Diane Ramirez rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'd never read any of the Get a Life stories before reading this collection, but shortly after diving in I realized that I adored them. Main character Jean is richly portrayed, with sometimes exasperating moments of weakness, or self-involvedness, or even ill-advised acts of kindness. He falls in and out of love at the drop of a hat, imagines horrible events for his adversary-of-the-moment, and tends to deal with his life by escaping into the castle in his mind. However, he is so likeable that h ...more
Jan 07, 2016 Bryanzk rated it it was amazing
Life is always miserable, but sometimes in a fun way...
Jeff Lanter
Monsieur Jean is a somewhat innocent and charming character. This French indie comic is somewhat sentimental and sweet, but it is also entertaining and worthwhile. Much like comics in the newspaper it frequently ends on some sort of punchline which I actually kind of liked. I was lucky enough to pick up a copy for $4 and it was totally worth the price of admission. While the graphic novel never gets as heavy as I like, I really had fun reading it and would recommend it to anyone that can get the ...more
Bill Davidson
Aug 31, 2012 Bill Davidson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I've got to admit that I didn't love this book as much after reading it a second time. I noticed a couple things that I had glossed over the first time. The racist rendering of black airline passengers in "A Trip to Lisbon" was disappointing. Equally disconcerting was the male characters' lack of patience with and verbal abuse of children.

However, despite these faults, I still enjoyed it. Love the artwork, the character development, and the stories. I look forward to reading more.
Yossi Gremillion
Apr 30, 2016 Yossi Gremillion rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Jul 15, 2014 Julie rated it liked it
This isn't a bad book, but it's a really disjointed one; if there's a story arc, I guess I missed it. There are some really funny moments, but overall it was so unmemorable that I read it today without ever being 100% sure that I had finished it once before. (Gave it three stars last time, apparently, and I still agree with that.)
Apr 06, 2010 Damon rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pretty good. Frenchy. Though in a similar vein, I don't think this is as good as Michel Rabagliati's "Paul" books (but maybe that's too simple of a comparison?) but it's entertaining enough. Not one you'll be hurrying home to get back to, but also not something you're likely to put down and not pick back up.
Jul 27, 2014 Smoothw rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: comics
Liked it a lot even though my copy was aa ARC with seemingly xeroxed art. Charming taless of an aimless? 20-something author, but different than most american indie comics with the same subject matter since it's French and the main protaganist isn't living in utter poverty. The art is also very charming.
Apr 30, 2013 Chris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another Monsieur Jean GN I was gifted. This one had a bit more meat to it in terms of story, and I really liked it. The little one-shot stories about the battle between Jean and his concierge were funny, and the bulk stories were great too. Definitely interested in reading more.
Jeff Raymond
A series of small stories about a French comic character. Whether a lot of this was lost in translation, or whether it just wasn't really good, I couldn't tell you. It certainly had its moments, but I ultimately couldn't connect with anything here.
Jun 15, 2008 Frank rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
After I finished Michel Rabagliati's books, my buddy the librarian recommended this one, along with another graphic novel by the same pair of French comics artists. It was a fast read, pleasant and entertaining but not particularly consequential.
Mark Feltskog
Sep 24, 2011 Mark Feltskog rated it really liked it
Shelves: graphic-novels
Dry, Gallic wit, quite clever with fine artwork, this is not exactly my cup of tea. I started out giving it three stars knowing that, by objective critical measure, this is probably a five star book, just, again, not for me.
Gordon McAlpin
Sep 10, 2010 Gordon McAlpin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Monsieur Jean books are impossibly well-drawn. I could stare at their pages for hours. While the stories have a certain thinness to them, they're still so damned warm that endearing that I can't help but adore them.
Jun 25, 2008 Tom rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book read so smooth. I became an instant fan. I do love a good breezy turn at european comics.

Now if only D&Q could get the rights to print Corto Maltese and Moebius in the US, I'd be a happy cartoonist.
Nov 20, 2007 Paul rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Dupuy and Berberian's collection of their "Monsieur Jean" works...the tales of an average guy leading an average life in France. A big nose. A few women. And all the empathy in the world. It's the best that comics get.
Jun 09, 2011 Peacegal rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition

Should have been called Get a Life Script. Too many relationships and too many babies.
Hank Stuever
Jul 08, 2013 Hank Stuever rated it liked it
Doesn't quite hold up the way I remembered my first readings of the "Monsieur Jean" comics, but still delightful in drips and drabs and, vicariously, soooo French.
Jun 20, 2008 Nicole rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: graphicnovel
entertaining look at the life of cynical, but not bitter, single french writer. i wanted more story development, but i'd definitely read a second volume.
Lars Guthrie
Reservedly comic comics about a French writer who has a hard time with commitment. Breezy and light, but with nice recurring themes and plot lines.
Mar 07, 2010 Lesliemae marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
I read graphic novels in the midst of writing hard essays, it seems to rebalance my chi.
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Other Books in the Series

Monsieur Jean (9 books)
  • Monsieur Jean:  L'amour, La Concierge (Monsieur Jean, #1)
  • Monsieur Jean: Les nuits les plus blanches (Monsieur Jean, #2)
  • Monsieur Jean: Les femmes et les enfants d'abord (Monsieur Jean, #3)
  • Monsieur Jean: Vivons Heureux Sans En Avoir L'air (Monsieur Jean, #4)
  • Monsieur Jean: Comme s'il en pleuvait (Monsieur Jean, #5)
  • Monsieur Jean: Inventaire Avant Travaux (Monsieur Jean, #6)
  • Monsieur Jean: Un Certain Équilibre (Monsieur Jean, #7)
  • La Théorie des gens seuls (Monsieur Jean)

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