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Asterix the Gaul: Album #1 Hardcover – September 1, 2004

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Asterix the Gaul: Album #1 + Asterix and the Golden Sickle: Album #2 + Asterix and the Goths: Album #3
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Product Details

  • Series: Asterix (Book 1)
  • Hardcover: 48 pages
  • Publisher: Orion (September 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0752866044
  • ISBN-13: 978-0752866048
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 11.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (49 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #447,938 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


As for the English adaptations of Asterix, they represent a real triumph of the translator's art. Anthea Bell and Derek Hockridge have finessed every allusion and tweaked every joke, so that their cascading English verbal wit seems to come straight from the heart of the original books -- Boyd Tonkin THE INDEPENDENT A cartoon drawn with such supreme artistry, and a text layered with such glorious wordplay, satire and historical and political allusion that no reader should ever feel like they've outgrown it...It is absurd that these wonderful books were ever out of print, and it's great to have them back -- Andrew Mueller TIME OUT If you're new to the indomitable Gauls, our favourite is Asterix in Britain, for its wry wit lampooning the Brits IRELAND ON SUNDAY There are plenty of Latin quips and snippets of Roman history, but enough low puns to make the stories as enjoyable as ever EVENING STANDARD

Language Notes

Text: English (translation) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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I will recommend this to anyone who likes reading Asterix comic books.
This is the first book in a series about Asterix, his funny friend Obelix, and the wise druid, Getafix.
Rachael Stefanussen
The illustrations are superb, the stories are witty and funny, and the characters are memorable.
E. Strickenburg

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

76 of 77 people found the following review helpful By John Campbell on July 29, 2004
Format: Hardcover
The appeal of the Asterix books is universal, and timeless. For children there are terrific stories well told, and dazzling illustrations. For adults - the real audience - there are Rene Goscinny's wonderful jokes and marvellous puns, interspersed with quotations from classical authors, The Bible, Napoleon, Shakespeare and many many more. And Albert Uderzo's illustrations are often simply breathtaking. So, many of the visual ideas in 'Asterix and Cleopatra' come from the movie 'Cleopatra' with Elizabeth Taylor and Rex Harrison. In 'Asterix the Legionary' the pirates' ship is sunk by Asterix and Obelix (again). The image of the pirates on a raft in mid ocean is derived from a 19th Century French Romantic painting, now in the Louvre, 'The Raft of the Medusa' by Gericault. In the French version the pirate captain says to the reader 'Je suis meduse' ('I'm stunned'). In English this is rendered equally cleverly as 'We've been framed, by Jericho.'

Ah, the translations. Asterix owes his success in the English-speaking world to the brilliance of the translators, Anthea Bell and Derek Hockridge. They've been responsible for all the Asterix books since 'Asterix the Gaul' first appeared in English in 1969, an astonishing record of continuity. So true is their work to the spirit of the French originals, that it's as though Goscinny and Uderzo had produced the books in English in the first place. Some of the jokes are arguably better in English than in French, especially the names.

24 books were written by Rene Goscinny and illustrated by Albert Uderzo. Then in 1977 Goscinny died at the tragically early age of 51. Uderzo has since produced seven more books on his own, as well as some collections of other material, and they're very good. But Rene Goscinny's genius is sorely missed.
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26 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Angelo Akrobrat on June 26, 2000
Format: Paperback
This is the premier of the world-renowned Asterix series - one of the most humorous, most colorful series of comics that made and continues to make millions of children and adults smile. In this tale the reader is introduced to Asterix, his friends and their strange, yet lovable little village. The reader gets to meet the revered druid, aptly named "Getafix" and the bustling, burly chieftain, "Vitalstatistix." The story gives a lot of background to the entire comic series, including the nature of the magic potion and the reason why Obelix isn't allowed to touch it. The reader also learns about the Roman dilemma, which revolves around the little, indomitable Gaulish village.
This specific episode begins with the Romans sending a spy in to the village to discover their secret source of strength. Very soon, the Romans kidnap Getafix in the hopes that they could cajole the potion's formula out of him. However, the Romans are lined up to pay dearly because nobody lays one over on the Gauls without receiving a serious pounding on the skull!
Most Asterix titles are aimed at a teen/adult audience and they cleverly integrate many historical events in to their plots. There is also a deeper satirical presence throughout these books, and for that reason I feel that children under the age of 12 or so would not quite appreciate the humor. The violence is more along the lines of black eyes, dented armor and missing teeth, and hence should not worry a parent too much. This is one of the best Asterix comics, and since it started the chain reaction, this is the one to get FIRST!
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Jedidiah Palosaari VINE VOICE on March 27, 2002
Format: Paperback
Someplace growing up I ran into the Asterix titles, with a four volume set beginning with Asterix the Gaul. As a child I enjoyed the antics; as an adult I enjoy the puns and historical allusions. It continually amazes me to realize that this is originally a French production, and yet translated into English and some 20 other languages, and the puns *still* translate! That's not easy to do. And while later episodes decline in quality and are suitable more for children, stories like Asterix the Gaul are great for children of 30 years too.
The very names provide example of brilliant use of dialogue. Asterix- a small, seeming addition. Obelisk, who delivers menhirs. Getafix, the Druid. (Remember, this series began in the 60's.) Cacaphonix, the Bard, and Vitalstatistix, the chief. In the same vein, the authors use contemporary differences between cultures and play them upon the ancient Gaulish-Roman dispute. This is about the only place one can find swearing in Latin- "ipso facto", "sic", etc. Or the taking of Toutanis' name in vain.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Gary Selikow on May 20, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Asterix The Gaul was first published in French in 1961 and in English only in 1969.
The first of the Asterix books , it is a very clever and witty piece of work on the Roman occupation of Gaul in 50 BC-with a fair amount of Latin quips in too -read Asterix and you'll soon become familiar with 'Quid' , 'Vae victo , vae victus' and 'Morituri te salutant'.
It begins with the familiar scene of well thumped Roman legionnaires reporting their defeat to an incensed Roman centurion (in this case Crismus Bonus) who then hatches a plan to deal with the Gauls which our heroes always in the end foil.

It also includes such recurring themes as Cacofonix and his hated singing , the magic potion (and why Obelix cannot have any ) and a guest appearance by Julius Caesar.It ends as always without he Gauls feasting their heroes 'under a starry sky...victorious over their enemies , thanks to magic the protection of the gods and low cunning'.

Unlike all of its successors in this book , Obelix does not even offer to accompany Asterix on his adventure (which is so unlike the Obelix we know from all of the other Asterix books).
There are some gaps in the dialogue and there is unusually not one woman or girl in the first book . drawbacks which will be made up for in the other Asterix books.

Nevertheless it is a great start to your Asterix collection and an amusing little book.
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