Review by Booklist Review
*Starred Review* As the proliferation of recent Odyssey graphic novelizations approaches the record held by Shakespeare adaptations, it is perhaps appropriate that Hinds, the Bard's premiere sequential adapter, should produce the most lavish retelling of Homer yet. Showing great artistic evolution since his rough-and-tumble Beowulf (2007), Hinds lets the epic story take its time, with a slow build and pages that aren't afraid to alternate packed dialogue with titanic action. The sumptuous art, produced with grain, texture, and hue, evokes a time long past while detailing every line and drop of sweat on Odysseus' face and conveying the sheer grandeur of seeing a god rise out of the ocean. Teens may be baffled by the hero's commitment to the same pantheon of gods who heap trouble in his path, but they will not lose touch with the universal qualities of steadfastness that Odysseus still embodies. The mythic trials have seldom felt more grueling or genuine, and this makes a perfect pairing with Tim Mucci and Ben Caldwell's adaptation for a slightly younger audience from the All-Action Classics series, affording a chance to see how an archetypal story can function so powerfully at both the realistic and the stylized ends of the artistic spectrum. A grand example of Hinds' ability to combine historical adventure with human understanding.--Karp, Jesse Copyright 2010 Booklist
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review
One of the oldest and most often retold literary classics is faithfully recreated in watercolors and pastels. Hinds, who has previously adapted Beowulf and several Shakespeare plays in comics format, uses different translations as a basis for his adaptation, trimming the text but keeping all the events of Odysseus' journey home from the Trojan War. The adaptation is most impressive in its ability to convey the despair, anguish, and joy of the characters in a sudden, striking way that text alone can't, pulling these familiar figures out from a thousands-year-old story and presenting the reader with human faces. Hinds's watercolor landscapes of the Greek coast, islands, and mountains are another strong point. But seeing the characters as they exchange archaic dialogue emphasizes its stilted and unnatural quality. And in some sections, particularly in early exposition, the text is so plentiful it crowds out the art. Still, Hinds has created a work that both honors the epic's long tradition and helps readers see these characters in a new light. Ages 12-up. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Review by School Library Journal Review
Gr 7 Up-Taking a world-famous epic poem and adapting it into a graphic-novel format for modern readers is certainly an enormous endeavor. But since Hinds already performed the same feat quite admirably with Beowulf (Candlewick, 2007) he has proven himself more than capable of the task. To sum up the classic story: Odysseus tries to get home after the Trojan War, but many obstacles are thrown in his way, and many people, creatures, and gods try to stop him. His men are loyal on the one hand, yet bad at following critical orders on the other, which results in even more delays. Meanwhile, his faithful wife Penelope waits for him while fending off scores of impatient suitors. Luckily for Odysseus, he does have a few supporters, including the goddess Athena. Hinds's beautiful watercolors skillfully capture the rosy-fingered dawn, the wine-dark sea, the land of the dead, and many other settings and characters that will inspire readers. This adaptation goes far above and beyond the "highlights" coverage that other versions such as Tim Mucci's The Odyssey (Sterling, 2010) provide. Hinds's work will be a welcome addition for fans of Homer's original work and for newcomers to this classic story.-Andrea Lipinski, New York Public Library (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Horn Book Review
A graphic-novel adapter of The Merchant of Venice (rev. 7/08) turns his hand to an adventure that still towers over its descendants -- rather as Hinds's powerful jacket image of a vengeful Poseidon looms over the home-seeking voyager who was hounded around the Mediterranean by the sea god. Citing classic translations of The Odyssey as sources (from Chapman to Fagles, with a special nod to Fitzgerald) but using only a dozen or so actual quotes from their work, Hinds retells Homer's epic in pictures plus a judicious minimum of words, sticking to the original intricate, twenty-four-chapter order with its flashbacks, multiple narrators, bloody climax (the massacre of Penelope's suitors), and peaceful, god-decreed conclusion. Brief as the text of this graphic version is (many spreads are nearly wordless), it makes an accessible and effective complement to the dramatic pencil and watercolor art that explicates and interprets the story. A timeless long-ago past comes alive in these images of gods and heroes, monsters and enchantresses; of mayhem, lovemaking, and touching reunions -- all arrayed in frames whose shape, number, and palette expertly pace and propel the story. As introduction, outline, illustration, and visual translation, a worthy companion to its great predecessors. joanna rudge long (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
(c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Kirkus Book Review
King Lear, 2009, etc.) with this stunning graphic retelling of Homer's epic. Following Odysseus's journey to return home to his beloved wife,Penelope, readers are transported into a world that easily combines the realistic and the fantastic. Gods mingle with the mortals, and not heeding their warnings could lead to quick danger; being mere men, Odysseus and his crew often make hasty errors in judgment and must face challenging consequences. Lush watercolors move with fluid lines throughout this reimagining. The artist's use of color is especially striking: His battle scenes are ample, bloodily scarlet affairs, and Polyphemus's cave is a stifling orange; he depicts the underworld as a colorless, mirthless void, domestic spaces in warm tans, the all-encircling sea in a light Mediterranean blue and some of the far-away islands in almost tangibly growing greens. Don't confuse this hefty, respectful adaptation with some of the other recent ones; this one holds nothing back and is proudly, grittily realistic rather than cheerfully cartoonish. Big, bold, beautiful. (notes) (Graphic classic. YA)]] Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.