Louis Undercover – Fanny Britt

Groundwood Logos SpineLouis Undercover by Fanny Britt

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Publisher
First Published: October 1st, 2017
Publisher: Groundwood Books
Recommended Age: 12+
Pacing: Normal
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Graphic Novel, Family, Alcoholism, Love


Louis’s dad cries — Louis knows this because he spies on him. His dad misses the happy times when their family was together, just as Louis does. But as it is, he and his little brother, Truffle, have to travel back and forth between their dad’s country house and their mom’s city apartment, where she tries to hide her own tears.

When Louis and Truffle go to their dad’s for two weeks during the summer, their father seems to have stopped drinking. And when Truffle has a close call from a bee sting, their mother turns up and the reunited foursome spend several wonderful days in New York — until they reach the end of the road, again.


LOUIS UNDERCOVER made it hard for me to breathe.

I was surprised by how much this affected me. After all, I have read plenty of books about children coping with their parents’ separation, especially if one of the two parents is in no condition to maintain a stable relationship. I’m familiar with this, but what I am not familiar with is feeling overwhelmed with emotions in such a deep way.

What sets Fanny Britt apart from many other writer and illustrator is her ability to translate images into words and vice versa beautifully and authentically. You see, when you read this story, you feel twice as many emotions, seeing that both the graphics and narration hit you hard in the heart.


I was especially invested in this story because alcoholics make me uncomfortable. Actually, I sometimes feel scared being next to an intoxicated person. There have often been men who drank too much in my life, and as a child, I was scared of their loud voices and raucous laughter that sounded unnatural to my ears.

This made me experience the storyline like I would the ocean: carefully, but from the bottom of my soul. I needed to know everything would be okay for Louis and his brother. I also needed to see hope. Fortunately, I was left whole.

LOUIS UNDERCOVER is profound, touching, poetic and hopeful.

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