|3 out of 5 stars|
***Wanda's Summer Carnival of Children's Literature ***
This volume of Tintin is a 3-fer, containing 3 stories. I was unfamiliar with Red Rackham’s Treasure, a lovely escapist little adventure, but it does introduce the reader to Professor Cuthbert Calculus, a rather deaf and very absent-minded academic. Like Tintin, who is a reporter who never seems to report to any news franchise, Prof. Calculus doesn’t seem to have a university to answer to and can spend his time dowsing with a pendulum, in pursuit of whatever the Tintin bunch have on the go.
Where my nostalgia was engaged was the two remaining stories, The Seven Crystal Balls and Prisoners of the Sun. These two stories were serialized in a children’s magazine that I read in the 1970s and I remember being rather creeped out by some of the details (for example, a seemingly animated Peruvian mummy). I also seem to recall that each month’s offering would end on rather a cliffhanger, too, leaving the young readers to agonize until the next installment.
Reading it now, as an adult who has been to Peru, I can appreciate a lot of the artwork and the detail that I didn’t properly notice as a youngster. It’s obvious that Hergé had familiarity with and love for Peruvian culture. As a child, I loved the spitting llamas, poor old Captain Haddock being their chief target.
Another trip down memory lane.