From the Publisher
“Children are more ruthless about what they consider entertaining. They don't love books because they think they should. They love stories that deliver, and Classics Illustrated always had the goods. Looks like it still does.” NEWSWEEK
“Congress should create an amendment that demands every single school in America place Classics Illustrated in their curriculum.” DIAMOND GALLERIES SCOOP
“For those who may have grown up with the original Classics Illustrated, Papercutz's decision to resurrect the series will be welcome news.” OMNIVORACIOUS
“The remarkably detailed color illustrations open passages that words alone cannot convey. Recommended.” LIBRARY MEDIA CONNECTION
A legendary patriarch of American genre fiction, London (1876–1916) wove emotion and adventure into a wildly popular combo that flowers today throughout all media. The book's hero, effete gentleman-journalist Humphrey Van Weyden, must survive not just the amoral Pacific Ocean but its titular wolf: Wolf Larsen, the brilliant but "unmoral" captain of seal-hunting schooner The Ghost. First rescued by Larsen and then forced onto his crew, Van Weyden confronts philosophical debates, crew unrest, treacherous weather, and a beautiful castaway who's also a writer. While some other literary graphic adaptations modify the original, Reb's gets inside London's vision with detailed, period-inspired inks enhanced by varying monochrome. The artist's light/dark palette creates thrillingly dangerous ocean vistas. Moreover, the hypercivilized Van Weyden and the sonuvabitch Larsen come across as complex, asymptotic characters, each worthy of both scorn and admiration throughout their unlikely mentor/apprentice relationship. VERDICT This fine adaptation will make excellent fodder for book clubs as well as for armchair sailors owing to the complexity of the characters, their dilemmas, and their choices. With brutality and some oblique sexual content, this title is for teens and adults.—M.C.
School Library Journal
Gr 8 Up—Humphrey Van Weyden is a literary critic who, due to his large inheritance, has never had to work a day in his life. During a routine voyage, his ship is sunk and he is rescued by a vessel called Ghost, where he is forced into service by the ship's terrifying captain, Wolf Larsen. Throughout the course of his time aboard Ghost, the protagonist is challenged to grow physically and mentally. At the outset, Larsen appears to be nothing more than a frightening and unpredictable ship captain. Van Weyden soon learns that the man is an autodidact, who enjoys partaking in philosophical arguments and solving complex problems. Unfortunately, Larsen's cruel and abusive nature dominates his behavior, thus leading to death and destruction. This graphic novelization of London's classic makes it accessible to low-level and reluctant readers. The illustrations are drawn so as to emphasize the wild passion and tense tone of Van Weyden's various interactions and observations while on the vessel. Similar in style to popular superhero comics, the book's chapters are each assigned a monochromatic color theme, which greatly enhances the work's mood. For example, the chapter in which Larsen attempts to assault a young woman and Van Weyden intervenes is depicted in red tones emphasizing the tension, violence, and approaching climax. The detailed images give readers a clear understanding of the basic themes and storyline so that they may better focus their attention on comprehending the dialogue. This title would be an excellent addition to any library or classroom.—Annalise Ammer, City of Rochester Public Libraries, NY