This is a literary graphic novel, in french.
Review taken from the Guardian:
Thompson's epic tale – set in a timeless Middle East that fuses exotic legend with grim modernity – follows the fortunes of Dodola, an Arab girl sold into child marriage by her illiterate parents. Taught to read and write by her well-meaning husband, Dodola hones a love of numbers and narrative which helps her survive her subsequent adventures. "Adventures" is the operative word: Dodola is catapulted from one melodramatic trial to the next...some of the most thrilling action sequences I've seen in comics for years). At heart, however, Habibi is a love story between Dodola and Zam, a black slave she adopts as an infant and to whom she is mother, sister and inamorata.
Visually, the book is a feast. It has the cinematic brio of Will Eisner, a feverish, symbolic vision reminiscent of David B's Epileptic, and a keen traveller's eye worthy of Sacco (who's thanked in the acknowledgments for having "guided this book to completion"). Huge Miltonic angels, fearsome djinn, boisterously crowded towns and rivers teeming with garbage are woven together in a grand tapestry of brushwork, interlaced with recurring motifs of vapour, blood, rain and the fluid morphings of Semitic script. Thompson clearly adores the beauty of Arabic calligraphy and is enthralled by the landscape and people of the Arab world.