Released: November 28th 2017
I received a copy of Grimms Manga Tales from NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Grimms Manga Tales is more or less, exactly what the title implies. It is a collection of Grimm fairy tales that have been converted in manga form, though there’s a decent amount of creative license being used throughout (the author made a point of making each story their own). The stories include: Little Red Riding Hood, Rapunzel, Hansel and Gretel, the Two Brothers, the Twelve Hunters, Snow White, the Frog King, Puss in Boots, and the Singing, Springing Lark.
I’ll admit I had some trouble getting into this novel. I don’t think it was the subject matter – I love Grimm’s stories, even when they’re retold by another author. Perhaps it was the specific changes being made that kept me from enjoying it as much as I would have liked (it did feel like many of the endings were significantly altered from their original ending, almost to the point that Disney has done).
While I had been aware of the originals of most of these, there were a few I was not aware of (and I think I enjoyed them a bit more too, so maybe not knowing about them helped), I had never heard of the Two Brothers, Puss in Boots (unless you count the reference in Shrek, which I’m betting you don’t) and the Singing, Springing Lark (though I did love the name of that one right away).
I think out of the ones I had been aware of previously, the first one, Little Red Riding Hood was probably my favorite. I think I would have liked it more had it been stretched out more; into a novella or novel instead of simply a short story. My saying that makes me realize I had felt all the stories were too rushed, even though I never felt that way during the originals. Perhaps this is due to the writing style or the medium?
While I did enjoy some of the stories, on the whole I felt that these could have used some more work. I did greatly enjoy the artwork however, it’s beautifully rendered and perfectly reminiscent of the manga style, which is exactly what one would hope for.