Alan Bennett's brilliant adaptation of Wind In The Willows by Kenneth Graham, one of the all-time great animal stories and a true classic of children's literature.
Alan Bennett first appeared on the stage in 1960 as one of the authors and performers of the revue 'Beyond the Fringe'. His stage plays include Forty Years On, Getting On, Habeas Corpus, The Old Country and The Lady in the Van, and he has written many television plays, notably A Day Out, Sunset Across the Bay, A Woman of No Importance and the series of monologues Talking Heads. An adaptation of his television play, An Englishman Abroad, was paired with A Question of Attribution in the double-bill Single Spies, first produced at the National Theatre in 1988. This was followed in 1990 by his adaptation of The Wind in the Willows and in 1991 by The Madness of George III. Alan Bennett is the author of the best-selling biography Writing Home, and the short novels The Clothes They Stood Up In, Father Father Burning Bright, The Lady in the Van and The L
Gr 3-5-Stout-hearted Dorothy, dashing but naive D'Artagnan, and feckless Toad are introduced to young graphic-novel enthusiasts. Each book is a serviceable representation of the original work, hitting all relevant plot points in a somewhat rigidly paced 70 to 100 pages. Occasional anachronisms are jarring (D'Artagnan asks, "Are you okay?"). Unfortunately, the pages in Oz suffer from serious overcrowding: detail-heavy panels are arranged in an overlapping layout with no gutters between panels, making the book visually dense. Colors glare and characters appear stiff. Eric Shanower's graphic-novel edition of the same book (Marvel Classics) is easier on the eyes. Musketeers is drawn in a sharper-edged but still goofy style that emphasizes the humor in every scene. Willows is illustrated in an exaggerated cartoon style, with pop-eyed, loose-limbed characters that are a sharp contrast to depictions in other recent illustrated editions by artists such as Robert Ingpen, Luanne Rice, and Inga Moore. No library should be without these classics, but these adaptations may not be the best ones to choose.-Paula Willey, Baltimore County Public Library, Towson, MD (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Originally published in France in 1996, this edition collects the four corresponding English-language volumes that were first issued between 1997 and 2002 by NBM. Plessix's style has been called "detailed impressionism," and the limpid watercolors of his lavish adaptation give that "Somewhere Else" quality to the classic story--2008 is the 100th anniversary of Graham's novel. So many adaptations have so little space to work in that they seem more like CliffsNotes versions. But Plessix has truly adapted the tale with most of the narrative details intact--and a few new twists at the end. And while the anthropomorphic animal characters have a cute, cartoony quality, the overall effect of a timeless, golden world is not thereby disrupted; all the looniness and love of nature from the original come through beautifully. Somehow the world of Mole and his friends suggests an animal Hobbiton in a Ring-less alternative universe, where talking animals and humans coexist amid a gloriously bucolic world of water, woods, and fields based on preindustrial rural England. Unfortunately, the pages are a little too small to showcase the details of Plessix's lush art as it deserves. For all ages.--M.C. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.
Michael Hague illustrates three collections of time-proven tales. Originally published in 1910, Old Mother West Wind by Thornton W. Burgess introduces a group of enchanting woodland creatures, the Merry Little Breezes, Reddy Fox and Tommy Trout among them, to a new generation of readers. Michael Hague's Favorite Hans Christian Andersen Fairy Tales offers nine classic stories including The Snow Queen, Thumbelina and The Little Mermaid, all adapted by Jane Woodward. And lastly, Hague portrays the lush habitat of Toad, Mole, Rat and Badger in Kenneth Grahame's The Wind in the Willows. The handsomely designed oversize volumes present Hague's artwork in framed spreads and spot illustrations, just right for lap reading. (Apr.) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.