The Graphic Canon, Vol. 2

Russ Kick, Author
Edited by Russ Kick. Seven Stories, $34.95 (512p) ISBN 978-1-60980-378-0
Reviewed on: 10/01/2012
Release date: 10/02/2012
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Comprising original graphic versions of classic literature, from Coleridge’s “Kubla Khan” to Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray, this is the second volume of a must-have anthology for those who wish to lose themselves utterly in visual narrative adaptations of the works of the Western canon. Featuring spectacular graphic adaptations of some of the 19th century’s most famous works, contributors include Maxon Crumb, John Porcellino, and Megan Kelso. Each selection is prefaced with a short introduction to provide context, and a rationale is included for the marriage of a particular writer with a particular artist. And editor Kick certainly gets it right. Porcellino’s simple drawings are perfect for Thoreau’s Walden. Eran Cantrell’s silhouetted illustrations for Carroll’s “Jabberwocky” are positively stunning. And what PMurphy does with Wordsworth’s “I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud” is marvelously original. Apart from containing insightful introductions and wonderful artwork, these selections have a not-to-be-underestimated pedagogical value that educators will no doubt find invaluable in bringing classic works of literature to a 21st-century audience immersed in visual culture. (Oct.)
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