Monday, August 13, 2018

The Scarlet Letter Manga Classics

The Scarlet Letter
Manga Classics
by Nathaniel Hawthorne, SunNeko Lee, Crystal S Chan, Stacy King
Udon Entertainment
Comics & Graphic Novels, Teens & YA
Pub Date 18 Mar 2015
EDITION Paperback
ISBN 9781927925331
PRICE $19.99 (USD)

Nathaniel Hawthorne's powerful tale of forbidden love, shame and revenge comes to life in Manga Classics: The Scarlet Letter. When Hester Prynne bears an illegitimate child she is introduced to the ugliness, complexity, and ultimately the strength of the human spirit. Though set in a Puritan community during the Colonial American period, the moral dilemmas of personal responsibility and consuming emotions of guilt, anger, loyalty, and revenge are timeless.

This manga retelling of Hawthorn’s classic American novel is faithfully adapted by Crystal S. Chan and features stunning artwork by SunNeko Lee which will give old and new readers alike a fresh insight into this tragic saga of Puritan America.

My Thoughts

If you're searching for alternate ways to read classic literature, you may wish to try Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter in graphic novel format. 

There are many things I appreciate about this manga interpretation of this tragic story. The beginning includes a guide on the traditional manga format, in which the pages are read from right to left.

I love the way the story is condensed and yet remains faithful to the original. There's an informative authors’ note at the end that explains the adaptation and discusses the metaphors within the original story as artistic choices.

The backgrounds and backdrops displayed are well done and each image is vivid. The story is rendered in black and white with a bold pop of red for the Scarlet A and the fonts are easy to read. 

The pages are engrossing because of the depth of detail in creating the scenes and expressions. I especially like how faces are enlarged in the frame so the expression pops out more at viewers. 

You can envision their shame and see there was no inner solitude for those tormented by those advocating a greater purity. You can also see how the crowd's mentality was frightening and may have influenced behavior, especially during that era of Puritan America. 

I received a copy of this graphic novel from Net Galley for an honest review.

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