Monday, March 6, 2017

Manga Classics: Great Expectations - A Review

Manga Classics
Great Expectations

great expectations.jpg

Author: Charles Dickens
Adapter: Crystal S. Chan
Artist: Nokman Poon

A Review

In high school, Great Expectations was barely readable by this reviewer. This Manga edition stood out and made the story both readable and enjoyable.

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.

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