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Great Expectations: Manga Classics Paperback – March 1, 2015
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About the Author
Charles John Huffam Dickens was an English writer and social critic. He created some of the world's best-known fictional characters and is regarded by many as the greatest novelist of the Victorian era.
Crystal S. Chan is an award-winning author and television screen play writer. She holds a degree in language and literature. Crystal is a huge fan of authors such as Jane Austen and she is equally passionate about Sailor Moon. Her passion for classic literature combined with her love of the comics medium allows her to strike a solid balance between preserving the depth of the original content while adapting the language for a younger generation.
Nokman Poon says her greatest passion for drawing comics comes from the globally popular video game Street Fighter. She says she was inspired to become an artist through the art of her beloved fighting game. When she wasn’t playing the game, she would draw her favorite characters in fight scenes in order to quench her thirst of the exciting gameplay. Her years of training in comic of the fighting game genre gives her drawing a touch of firmness and crisp that rivals a male artist. Nokman enjoys sampling cuisine from all over the world. She admits that recently she has become addicted to playing mobile games during her leisure time.
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Manga is unique - it is intended to be read starting from what we westerners would call the “back” of the book. Reading then proceeds toward the “front”. At first this may seem a bit discomforting, but it quickly becomes second nature and the story moves along. At 312 pages, this book is almost three times as long as most graphic novels - echoing the nature of Dickens work. But the artwork (except for the covers, all artwork is black and white in my e-book copy) makes the story understandable and enjoyable to one who has long ago forgotten the plot and themes developed in Dickens classic work.
The Dickens story was published with two distinct endings. The latter being adapted after early readers expressed a specific dissatisfaction with the earlier version. Neither ending is depicted in this book. A quick search of the Internet provided summaries of both endings - the omission of either or both does not seem to hinder the story, but it might have been fun to see them both included for the readers’ benefit, allowing him or her to choose the prefered ending.
For those looking for a new and enjoyable way to enjoy classic stories, Manga may provide one means to do so. You do lose the author’s original insight and nuances - but … this reader enjoyed the new journey through the old material, perhaps others will as well.
This review is based on a free electronic copy provided by the publisher for the purpose of creating this review. The opinions expressed are my own.
This novel has all gothic elements of Christmas Carol without delivering and end with a real hope of a better future for the main character. Little Pip is redeemed from penury thanks to a good deed he did to a convict, but fails to see past appearances and as a poor judge of character fails at understanding what is really best for him beyond nice clothes, gentlemanly manners and a life of general comfort. He thus loses what was probably his only real chance at genuine mutual love to an illusion, the infatuation for a girl who has been brought up not to believe in love and to deceive men to her personal benefit by the very grotesque character of Miss Havisham, an old lady clad in white who had her heart broken by a rake as a young lady. The connections between the characters are revealed during the novel, but Pip fails to see the truth until it is presented to him on a gilded plate, thus putting his life in danger more than once. His last meeting with Estella has the bitter-sweet taste of the realisation of precious things lost forever and I am grateful that this manga does not make any attempt to let the reader believe there can be anything other than forgiveness, but not a second chance, in Pip's and Estella's future.
In conclusion, if you are already familiar with this novel, you will enjoy the artwork and script, if you are not, make sure you are ready for a tale with no real happily ever after, at least for the main character.
Charles Dickens classic novel, Great Expectations, is reformatted into a manga. The result is an excellent way to convince teens to read a classic tale.
Great Expectations is the story of Pip, a pleasant helpful child, who is thrown into high society in the early 1800s. Young Pip is randomly called to entertain and assist rich, old and crazy Miss Havisham. There he falls in love with her stepdaughter, Estella, and even more with the idea of being a gentleman. Once old enough Pip becomes an apprentice blacksmith under his brother-in-law. But greater adventures await Pip as he receives news that an anonymous benefactor is paying for him to become a London gentleman. He has Great Expectations now.
Personally I have tried slogging through the original 500 page novel and never made it even 10% in. This graphic novel makes reading the plot entertaining and faster though it is also over 300 pages long. The artwork makes keeping the multitude of characters easily recognized.
I chose this version of Great Expectations because I have great memories of reading Classics Illustrated comics when I was a child. This manga gives the exact same feeling of making a great story accessible to modern readers. Great Expectations, the manga, is highly recommended for students who want more entertainment and enjoyment than simply reading the wiki. It is also recommended for adult readers who have always been curious about Dickens' story but don't want to invest 10+ hours to read the book.
Thanks to the publisher, Udon, and netgalley for a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.
Most recent customer reviews
I’m going to be honest: I really really don’t like Charles Dickens. There, I’ve said it.Read more