Review by Booklist Review
Of the half-dozen series acclaimed writer Moore created when he returned to mainstream comics in the late 1990s, the most impressive is the high-concept League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, which posits that the fictional nineteenth-century figures Allan Quartermain (of Rider Haggard's She), Captain Nemo, Dr.ekyll and Mr. Hyde, the Invisible Man, and Mina Harker (heroine of Dracula) banded together as a sort of Victorian superhero team. In the second collection of their exploits, they defend England from an invasion of Martians a la Wells' War of the Worlds. As befits a rousing adventure of their era, a traitor rears his ugly head, and a sinister figure reveals unexpected sentimentality; less traditional are some highly anachronistic violence and sex. This is Moore doing what he does best, freshly and imaginatively revitalizing moribund genres. He is aided in this case by O'Neill's angular, thin-line art, which evokes period book illustrations without copying them. Forget last summer's execrable League movie; in this case, the film wasn't just inferior to the book--it was an insult to it. --Gordon Flagg Copyright 2004 Booklist
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review
Acclaimed comics author Moore (Watchmen) has combined his love of 19th-century adventure literature with an imaginative mastery of its 20th-century corollary, the superhero comic book. This delightful work features a grand collection of signature 19th-century fictional adventurers, covertly brought together to defend the empire. The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen comprises such characters as Minna Murray (formerly Harker), from Bram Stoker's Dracula; Robert Louis Stevenson's Dr. Jekyll (and his monstrous alter ego, Mr. Hyde); and Jules Verne's Captain Nemo, restored to the dark, grim-visaged Sikh Verne originally intended. There's also Hawley Griffin, the imperceptible hero of H.G. Well's The Invisible Man, and Allan Quartermain, the daring adventurer of King Solomon's Mines and other classic yarns by H. Rider Haggard. It's 1898, and these troubled adventurers are spread around the globe, in the midst of one pickle or another. Quartermain is found near death, delirious in a Cairo opium den; the perverse Griffin is captured terrorizing an all-girls school (leaving behind a series of mysterious pregnancies); and the gruesome Mr. Hyde is rescued from the mob set to kill him at the end of Stevenson's classic novel. This collection of flawed and gloomy heroes is recruited to fight a criminal mastermind (a notorious 19th-century literary villain) intent on firebombing the East End of London. The book also includes "Allan and the Sundered Veil," a rip-snorting, prose time-travel story starring Quartermain and written in the manner of the 19th-century "penny dreadful." Moore and O'Neill have created a Victorian era Fantastic Four, a beautifully illustrated reprise of 19th-century literary derring-do packed with period detail, great humor and rousing adventure. (Feb.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Review by Library Journal Review
According to Publishers Weekly, Volume 1 of this literary megacrossover series was the best-selling graphic novel of 2003; interest in this second volume is likely to be high, then. When H.G. Wells's "Martians" from The War of the Worlds invade Victorian England, Mycroft Holmes (Sherlock's brother) summons his team of operatives for help. While Captain Nemo and Mr. Hyde defend London, Mina Murray (Mina Harker from Dracula) and adventurer Allan Quatermain go in search of a mysterious doctor who holds the key to the world's survival. But the Invisible Man (appropriately, perhaps) disappears. The story is less exciting and action-packed as might be expected, but it does take the characters in interesting directions. Moore's writing is intelligent, and the book, especially a long text travelog at the end, includes an astonishing array of further literary references, which may inspire some readers to seek out the original works. O'Neill's artwork is angular, moody, and sometimes grotesque, with impressive panoramic scenes of combat and destruction. Though not quite as enjoyable as the first book (but close), this is recommended for all libraries. Some surprisingly explicit sex and violence will limit it to adult collections. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.