Léonid T. 2, La Horde, by Frédéric Brrémaud & Stefano Turconi – Book Review by Fred Patten
by Pup Matthias
Submitted by Fred Patten, Furry’s favorite historian and reviewer.
Léonid. T. 2, La Horde, by Frédéric Brrémaud & Stefano Turconi.
Toulon, France, Soleil, May 2016, hardcover €10,95 (48 pages).
My thanks to Lex Nakashima, as usual for this French bande dessinée album.
Brrémaud is the author-artist of those French wordless “Love” animal albums that many fans collect, but in this case he is only the author. Turconi is the artist.
To repeat what I said about the first album, “The locale is the farming district of Deux-Sèvres, in central-west France. ‘Léonid is a cat, not yet an adult, but not a kitten, either. Just a young cat. He lives in a house in the district, in the midst of trees, pretty far from any city and close to a farm.’ Léonid is a young housecat, living with two other housecats (Hoa Mai, a Siamese, and Rosso, an elderly orange Pekinese) and a dog (Mirza, a toy terrier). His household is also the home of Atchi, a mouse constantly sneezing because he’s allergic to cat hairs. Léonid is allowed outside during the daytime to associate and play with the local feral cats; the female black-&-white Ba’on, and the males Bouboule (the fat one), Arsène (the nervous one), and an anonymous one (because he’s almost immediately killed). […] The Two Albinos is mostly the story of how Ba’on is kidnapped by the two albinos to be their slave, and how Léonid and Atchi, the sneezing mouse, venture outside to her rescue. They’re successful, but not really because Ba’on reveals that while she was in the albino cats’ power, they boasted that they are just the vanguard of ‘the horde’, ‘the avant-garde of the terror of Great Attila, our guide’ who will kill or enslave all the animals of the district. Léonid, Ba’on, Aichi, Hoa Mai, Rosso, and Mirza are left wondering what to do when Attila and his horde arrive?”
In t.2, the Horde arrives. The animals in Léonid’s house – three housecats, Mirza the toy terrier, and Atchi the mouse are enjoying their daily life. Old Rosso, who is suffering erratic memory loss, sleeps most of the time. Young Léonid goes out each day to associate with the local feral cats, Bouboule, Arsène, and especially the female Ba’on. They are under the dubious protection of Zeus and Apollo, the farmer’s two large, fierce guard dogs who watch over his small flock of sheep. Before the coming of the Horde’s bloody outliers, Zeus and Apollo would tear apart any cat they could catch; but after the animals’ adventures together against the Horde’s scouts led by the two sadistic albino cats, the neighborhood pets and the guard dogs have made common cause against Attila’s coming Horde.
The action begins when a family of cats – two parents and two young kittens – comes tearing into their neighborhood, barely ahead of the Horde. Zeus and Apollo are barely dissuaded from attacking them, and Léonid and the neighborhood cats put them up in the farmer’s barn when the Horde arrives, led by the two albino cats. They will kill any other cats, but they are especially looking for Ba’on and Léonid who escaped them earlier.
Léonid has to get back and forth from the barn to his house to organize a defense. It’s too risky to go above ground, so Atchi shows them some tunnels that friendly moles have dug. It helps, but it’s not enough. The solution is provided by the cat who seems to be the weakest.
T.2 has such a happy ending that I am not sure whether this has been only a two-album series or not. The subtitle is “The Adventures of a Cat”, so if it is to continue, Brrémaud & Turconi will have to move on to a new adventure. That should be easy; Léonid is an adventurous young cat.
Léonid is an enjoyable light adventure series, in easy French for the fan who isn’t fluent in it.
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