Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Pride and Prejudice: the graphic novel

I found this by chance at my local library, and picked it up because I have read and enjoyed Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. I'm not quite sure what to make of it, though. I have complaints about it, but I also have praise for it. I think I'll share the praise first.

This graphic novel portrays Austen's Pride and Prejudice very beautifully. Of course they had to do major editing to turn a 320 page novel into a 120 page graphic novel, but they didn't lose much in the editing. Nancy Butler and Hugo Petrus, the two who adapted Pride and Prejudice to a graphic novel, obviously used great care when sorting through what is absolutely necessary to the story.

The graphic novel is of course faster paced than the original novel, which would be an upside for anyone who is curious to read Pride and Prejudice but who get bogged down in Austen's writing. I don't mean to suggest that reading the graphic novel is the same as reading Austen's own Pride and Prejudice, but if someone just wants to know the meat of the story and/or wants some lighter reading than Austen's writing, this graphic novel is an excellent choice.

As I said, I do have some complaints: the artwork and the cover. Just looking at the cover of the book I took it for a book about Austen's Pride and Prejudice, rather than a retelling. The artwork is not the same as that in the book, which I found to be further misleading.

To begin with I did not like the artwork inside the book. It distracted me from the story, and I briefly considered returning the book without finishing it. I'm glad I stuck with it, however, because it grew on me. I still think that another style of drawing might be better suited to portray Pride and Prejudice (please don't ask me to expound), but I've decided that this isn't so bad after all.

Despite my complaints, this is a good graphic novel. Whether you've already read Austen's Pride and Prejudice, I recommend it. :)

2 comments:

Debra She Who Seeks said...

The idea of making graphic novels from the classics is intriguing. Hopefully it might encourage people to read the originals? It's funny that the cover is made to look like a modern magazine!

Sarita Rucker said...

I can tell you that it's convinced me to reread the original. I showed it to my mom, and now she's going crazy over Pride and Prejudice with me. We're trying to get my brother in on the fun...

And I hadn't quite realized that the cover looks like a magazine, but you're right. Thanks for commenting on that! :)

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