Graphic Classics, Volume 8: Mark Twain


Graphic Classics: Mark Twain is revised, with an all-new comics adaptation of "Tom Sawyer Abroad" by Tom Pomplun and George Sellas. Returning from the first edition are "The Mysterious Stranger" by Rick Geary, "A Dog's Tale" by Lance Tooks, "The Celebrated Jumping Frog" by Kevin Atkinson and "The Carnival of Crime in Connecticut" by Antonella Caputo and Nick Miller. Also "Is He Living or Is He Dead?," "A Curious Pleasure Excursion" and eight women artists interpret Mark Twain's "Advice to Little Girls." With a ...

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Graphic Classics: Mark Twain is revised, with an all-new comics adaptation of "Tom Sawyer Abroad" by Tom Pomplun and George Sellas. Returning from the first edition are "The Mysterious Stranger" by Rick Geary, "A Dog's Tale" by Lance Tooks, "The Celebrated Jumping Frog" by Kevin Atkinson and "The Carnival of Crime in Connecticut" by Antonella Caputo and Nick Miller. Also "Is He Living or Is He Dead?," "A Curious Pleasure Excursion" and eight women artists interpret Mark Twain's "Advice to Little Girls." With a dramatic cover painting by George Sellas.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
With a terrific lineup of artists and unbeatable material, Pomplun has assembled a collection of Mark Twain's work that should delight graphic novel fans and anyone seeking to boost their general cultural knowledge. The stories collected here are, of necessity, taken from Twain's short works, and if not every single word has made it into these comics adaptations, there is still an abundance of the great man's rhetoric, which should satisfy all but the most exacting readers. The book begins with Twain's 70th birthday oration, delivered in 1905, and continues with one of Twain's later works, "The Mysterious Stranger," a dark morality tale set in 16th-century Austria. The mood lightens with "How I Was Sold in Newark" and "The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County." Other yarns include "A Ghost Story" and "A Dog's Tale." Interspersed are shorter pieces: "Ode to Stephen Dowling Bots, Dec'd" (excerpted from Huckleberry Finn), a short discussion of a 19th-century fraud entitled "P.T. Barnum and the Cardiff Giant" and a superbly tongue-in-cheek advertisement for "A Curious Pleasure Excursion," in which the public learns Twain has leased a comet and is ready to take patrons on a deluxe ride through outer space. With over 20 different artists interpreting Twain's work, illustrations range from discreet drawings accompanying a page full of text to boffo spreads where characters cavort through the tale. Particularly charming is the collection of images accompanying Twain's practical "Advice to Little Girls," recommendations as timely now as when they were written. (Jan.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
This new offering in the Graphic Classics series takes on the celebrated American humorist and short story writer, Mark Twain. A graphic presentation is done of fifteen short stories, as well as excerpts from speeches and essays. The offerings are split evenly between works presented in their original form and those that are adapted, but all are given a fresh, sometimes deliciously skewed look by the artists who interpret the works in a graphic format. There are many styles of art, varied fonts, and several formats to keep the reader's attention. The work of twenty-five artists is showcased with a brief introduction to each. Included are several well-known Twain stories, but even lesser-known tales are made more accessible and memorable through the use of the graphic format. Unexpected choices in the engaging illustrations force the reader to view even a familiar story in a new way. For example, A Dog's Tale is uniquely conveyed with the use of pop art, mixed media, photographs of cultural icons, and pen-and-ink drawings. The illustrations convey Twain's dark and often self-deprecating humor in a way that might otherwise be lost on young readers. In this case, a picture often really is worth a thousand words. This book is recommended both to make Twain's stories more palatable for teens who are required to read them as well as to serve as an excellent introduction to his work for young readers and adults. Other Graphic Classics cover Bram Stoker, Ambrose Bierce, the work of H. P. Lovecraft, and more. VOYA Codes 5Q 3P J S A/YA G (Hard to imagine it being any better written; Will appeal with pushing; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12;Adult-marketed book recommended for Young Adults; Graphic Novel Format). 2004, Eureka Productions, 144p., Trade pb. Ages 12 to Adult.
—Sherrie Williams
Library Journal
The eighth in the publisher's series of literary adaptations, this work includes a dozen short tales and anecdotes by Twain, the great American tale spinner and satirist. This is not much like the staid old "Classics Illustrated" comics but literature for the indie comics crowd-with art in a variety of styles, some quite exaggerated and cartoony. The book's most substantial piece is "The Mysterious Stranger," adapted by Rick Geary (Treasury of Victorian Murder), about an angel named Satan (nephew of the better-known one) and his questionable "aid" to residents of a small Austrian town. Some pieces are adapted to comics form; others present the original text with a few (sometimes superfluous) illustrations. One outstanding example of the latter type is "A Dog's Tale," illustrated by Lance Tooks, in which the text becomes part of the page design, and the role of the ill-treated dog is played by a black woman, making explicit another layer of the story's meaning. Not every piece here is a winner, though, and the earlier Edgar Allan Poe and H.G. Wells volumes include material that may be more familiar to most readers. Still, this is a worthy project, and this volume is recommended for teens and adults. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal

Gr 10 Up -This second edition of the out-of-print eighth volume in the series was revised to include stories omitted earlier, such as "Advice for Little Girls": "If your mother tells you to do a thing....It intimate that you will do as she bids you, and then afterward act quietly in the matter according to the dictates of your best judgment." This gem, illustrated by Shary Flenniken, shows a cheerful young girl quite successfully selling beer at the lemonade stand her mother set up for her. Each piece is illustrated by a different artist, ensuring eight original takes on the material. "Is He Living Or Is He Dead?," adapted and illustrated by Simon Gane, explores and manipulates the idea of society finding value in artists and poets only after they have labored in obscurity and died starving. The story seems fresh here, with period art used to good advantage. "The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County," adapted and illustrated by Kevin Atkinson, and the comics premiere of Tom Sawyer Abroad are also included. The latter is adapted by Pomplun and illustrated by George Sellas in a style well suited to the story. The book's colorful, kinetic covers (the interior art is black and white) are irresistible. The literature is accessible to readers of all abilities, leaving them wanting more.-Dana Cobern-Kullman, Luther Burbank Middle School, Bur-bank, CA

Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal
Adult/High School-From the troublemaking, steel-trap mind of Twain comes this collection of illustrated short stories, anecdotes, and epigrams. Interpreted in black and white by various artists, these adaptations vary greatly in artistic style, yet through it all Twain's unmistakable insight never waivers. Some of the pieces, such as the consistently enjoyable tragicomedies "The Mysterious Stranger" and "The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County," receive a traditional comic-book treatment. Other pieces have a more modern, even expressionistic feel. Twain's language can be florid, and many readers will have to refer to the dictionary for clarification. In addition, his work is complex (many of the pieces involve him having a discussion with some incarnation of himself) and can be challenging. The heartbreaking "A Dog's Tale," a story of animal innocence in the face of casual, human evil, is accompanied by sociopolitical iconography that requires a sophisticated audience. While illustrated adaptations of Twain's lesser-known works are not for every reader's taste, teens looking for an unusual introduction to the writer will certainly find this book engaging.-Douglas P. Davey, Halton Hills Public Libraries, Ontario, Canada Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780978791926
  • Publisher: Eureka Productions
  • Publication date: 11/1/2007
  • Series: Graphic Classics Series, #8
  • Edition description: 2nd Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 144
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 10.00 (h) x 0.50 (d)

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