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Manga Classics: The Jungle Book by Rudyard…

Manga Classics: The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling

by Crystal S. Chan

Other authors: Choy (Artist)

Series: Manga Classics

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***This book was reviewed for Udon Entertainment

The Manga Classics version of Kipling’s The Jungle Book brought to life beloved childhood stories, and introduced me to a few I was unfamiliar with. There are seven 'books’, three of which centre around Mowgli, the wolf boy, and his rivalry with Shere Khan the tiger.

The remaining four are all independent, stand-alone stories. Kotick follows a young white seal on his adventures searching for a place where his people can be safe from human hunting. Riki Tiki Tavi, my favourite, is the tale of the titular mongoose who is rescued by a human family, and subsequently saves them in turn, when deadly cobras attack. Toomai was new to me. It is the tale of a young elephant keeper who witnessed the elephants’ dance, something no man had done before. Her Majesty’s Servants is another that's new to me. It is about life in a military camp, from the perspective of the animals involved.

In most of the stories that had people, I found the animal art lacking. The humans were typical manga quality, which I love. The exception was Riki Tiki Tavi, but there the main character was Riki, a mongoose, rather than a human. I thoroughly enjoyed seeing the (mostly) familiar stories drawn out. At the end, there is an explanation regarding translating the book to manga, stylistic and naming choices, and a neat synchronicity anecdote about Riki Tiki and a kitty-cat.

📚📚📚📚 Recommended for those who enjoy The Jungle Book and for introducing new readers to the material. ( )
  PardaMustang | Nov 20, 2017 |
I was so thrilled when I saw a new Manga Classics was out! I love this series and have read them all. Jungle Book excited me as 1) I've read the original and 2) these are short stories, something the series has not done before. The art is just as magnificent as on previous volumes and the author notes on adapting the original at the back are as illuminating as ever. This series stay as close to the originals as possible only adding artistic license where necessary to adapting a printed word novel to an illustrated manga format. The Jungle Book succeeds and presents a well-told version of the original seven stories: 4 featuring Mowgli and three others. The Mowgli stories aren't exactly chronological but they flow nicely told together and of the three stand-alone stories Rikki-Tikki-Tavi is my favourite as it is in the original. Be warned though that this (and others in the series) are sourced from the original material, not anything like its Disney counterpart. I don't think the short story format works as well in manga as it does in text so this is not my favourite of all the books (Great Expectations and Scarlet Letter probably are) but this is well done, nevertheless, and will encourage readers to pick up Kipling's classic if they have not already. ( )
  ElizaJane | Jun 2, 2017 |
3.75 Stars
Kudos for following along the general storyline of the original work! I love seeing classics retold in a new way to encourage readers to seek these stories out, especially in such a different way. The illustrations are fun and enchanting and vary from the other artwork in this series. It's all good, but The Jungle Book has more animals and less people as characters. The setting is completely unique too. I was fascinated by the white seal and mongoose stories. Looking forward to the next Manga Classics release.

Net Galley Feedback ( )
  LibStaff2 | Mar 19, 2017 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Chan, Crystal S.Authorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
ChoyArtistsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed

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