Title: Anne of Green Gables
Author: Mariah Marsden
Illustrator: Brenna Thummler
Genre: Middle grade, graphic novel
Release Date: October 24, 2017
Publisher: Andrews McMeel
My Rating: ★★★★☆
Thank you to the publisher for sending me an ARC via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
Ever since my mom read Lucy Maud Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables to me as a small child, Anne has been a favorite of mine. I adored the book, watched the movies, and immersed myself in the recent Neflix series, Anne With an E. And really, what’s not to like? L.M.’s Anne is strong, spunky, and utterly hilarious. She’s a young female character who breaks the mold and shows girls that it’s okay (or even super great) to have a wild imagination and speak your mind.
I can see why some might be a tad hesitant to read this graphic novel adaptation, seeing as new versions of books sometimes don’t live up to the originals; however, I, for one, am so glad that I read this adaptation, for it truly is a wonderful retelling of the classic.
The writer, Mariah Marsden, stays very faithful to how I remember the original storyline. (Although it has been a while since I’ve read Anne of Green Gables.) She does a fantastic job of working with the artist to transport the reader into Anne’s world. My only complaint writing-wise is that some parts of the book (mainly transitions) felt rushed. I felt like it could have been longer, especially considering how quick of a read it is.
Brenna Thummler’s illustrations are magnificent. The style and the colors feel spot-on;, and the characters and settings are just how I imagined them to be. The drawings are simplistic, yet still completely gorgeous. I especially adored Thummler’s beautiful landscapes. I found the characters’ eyes to be sort of creepy—they looked empty, more like doll eyes than the eyes of a real person—but other than that, I have nothing but praise for the artwork.
The quick and easy-to-read graphic novel format makes this book a great introduction to Anne’s story, especially for reluctant young readers who may be intimidated by the original. I feel confident that my tween siblings will enjoy this book, and I will definitely be recommending it to them. (Including my 11-year-old brother who only wants to read comics and sports books.) That said, I am in no way a reluctant reader, and I still loved this adaptation despite having read the original; it was so much fun to read this fresh take on one of my favorite childhood books.
All in all, Marsden and Thummler did a fantastic job creating a graphic novel adaptation of a beloved story that is sure to please kindred spirits new and old alike.