Most of you will probably be familiar with the plot line and don’t need summary, but if you do, read on.
Macbeth is a decorated war hero, fighting in wars for the king of Scotland, Duncan. After one such battle, three witches appear to Macbeth and his friend Banquo, promising titles and even the crown in Macbeth’s future. Lady Macbeth doesn’t want to leave things up to chance, so she convinces Macbeth to murder Duncan in his sleep as he stays the night in their castle. The king’s sons flee, afraid for their own safety, and Macbeth is made king. He is driven mad by keeping his crown and destroying anyone who could take it away from him, plunging the kingdom into terror. A force led by Macduff, another noblemen, gather strength from other nobles and even the King of England in the hopes of unseating Macbeth.
Vol 1: Shadows, illustrated by Scott Hampton, P. Craig Russell, Walter Simonson, Coleen Doran, and Glenn Fabry
When we first meet Shadow, he is at the end of a three year prison sentence for armed robbery. He's just about to get out when his wife is killed in a car accident, along with his best friend, who was going to give Shadow a job when he got out. Lifeless, penniless, and jobless, Shadow is reluctantly recruited by Mr. Wednesday, a peculiar man with one eye and a penchant for some supernatural business. Mr. Wednesday and Shadow encounter several larger-than-life beings who claim to be from various pantheons from around the world, brought to America by immigrants for centuries. Shadow is abducted a few times by some other powerful beings working against Mr. Wednesday, but he always manages to escape or be set free with only a few bruises. After one of these occasions, Shadow comes to work at a mortuary in Cairo, Illinois, for Mr. Ibis and Mr. Jacquel. This volume concludes just as Shadow and Mr. Wednesday reconnect, and the real work is about to begin.
Adapted by Brian Herbert & Kevin J. Anderson, illustrated by Raúl Allén and Patricia Martín
The Atreides family is preparing to leave their home on lush Caladan and make a new one on the desert planet of Arrakis. Paul, the son of Duke Leto, is put to a test just before he leaves, and he just might be a man of prophecy the Bene Gesserit have been waiting generations for. Paul's mother, Jessica, has been training him in their ways in the hopes he can fulfill their hopes for his future. But first, the Atreides must adjust to their new life on Arrakis, and the previous owners may not have given it up so easily. Booby traps, political intrigue, and betrayal are around every corner in this hostile world. To compound things, Duke Leto needs to figure out the spice mining operation, complete with its destructive sand worms threatening crew and equipment, while trying to broker a piece with the local Fremen who survive in the harsh desert climate.
Illustrated by Tim Foley
Dan Rather's original prose book, What Unites Us, is a collection of essays, musings and observations with lots of autobiographical details, about American history and political climate. This graphic novel adapts many of the essays from the prose version. The historical events are not told in any sort of chronological order. Instead, Rather uses his perspective on key historical moments to illustrate bigger ideologies; things like "courage", or "patriotism." Rather attempts to explain what is special about America, what brings us together as a nation, but also what has worked to separate us, especially partisan bickering and political turmoil.
Adapted and colored by John Ira Jennings, illustrated by David Brame, lettered by Damian Duffy
Chioma is a Chicago cop visiting her grandmother and grand aunt in Nigeria. It rains for three days, and a little boy with his scull bashed in stands on the doorstep. Chioma opens the door, and the little boy touches her hand, sizzling her flesh, and declares, “tag, you’re it!” She is it, indeed. The elders all become fearful for Chioma; lizards start stalking her everywhere she goes; shadows eerily creep behind her, just out of sight. Then, one night, Chioma is attacked by supernatural forces and undergoes a transformation unlike anything she could have imagined.
This is a manga adaptation of the classic novel. Adapted by Crystal Chan, illustrated by Kuma Chan.
Anne Shirley, a precocious orphan girl, was sent to the Cuthberts’ home of Green Gables by accident. the Cuthberts, siblings Marilla and Matthew were hoping to adopt a boy to help around the farm, but they got Anne instead, a girl full of imagination and spunk. After hearing of the life she could have if adopted by another family, Marilla decides to let Anne stay. Anne starts at school and befriends a neighbor girl named Diana, and even has her own enemy in Gilbert Blythe. Anne tries exceptionally hard to make Marilla happy, despite her lack of proper upbringing. She also grows close to Matthew, who likes her imaginative stories very much.
Adapted by Damian Duffy, illustrated by John Jennings
Lauren is a teenager living in a walled-in community in the middle of a dystopian LA basin. Society has collapsed, and the outside world is full of scavengers, prostitutes, drug addicts, murderers, and violent criminals. Police could come and investigate, but it costs money. Lauren also “suffers” from hypersensitivity - she can feel the pain, or pleasure, of others. After a night of unrest forces Lauren from her home, she decides to travel north where water isn’t as expensive and there might be some work. She also plans on founding a community dedicated to Earthseed, her belief in a God as Change, amongst other ideologies. Along the road, Lauren picks up strangers who travel together for safety, but may one day believe in Earthseed.
Adapted by Damian Duffy, illustrated by John Jennings
Dana and her husband Kevin are unpacking into their new home in 1970s Los Angeles. Suddenly, she is inexplicably transported to pre-Civil War south and saves a young boy who is drowning in a river. She returns to her home shortly after and has no way of explaining to Kevin why she is soaking wet. A short while later, she is transported again to the boy's bedroom, where he is setting fire to his drapes. Through talking with the boy, she realizes that he is part of her ancestry, as the slave owner who fathered her great-grandmother. Dana is transported back and forth several times, with Kevin hurriedly coming with her on one occasion. They realize that Dana is taken back any time Rufus' life is in danger, and she is returned home when her life is in danger. Through many trips to Rufus' plantation and discussion with slaves and slave owners, Dana becomes a part of life, with all the horrors that slavery possess. She is beaten on several occasions, nurses other beaten slaves back to health, helps Rufus in obtaining the slave woman he desires, and tries to teach the children how to read.
Illustrated and adapted by Fabio Moon and Gabriel Bá
Here's an adaptation from the guys who brought you Two Brothers, a highly reviewed book you should definitely get. How to Talk to Girls is also highly reviewed, so I won't gush very long.
While walking down the street, Enn and Vic are invited in to a house party. All of the party-goers are ladies, and all are surreally beautiful. Vic, being the sociable, friendly type, accepts on both of their behaves, which makes Enn increasingly nervous. He's never been that great at talking to girls, but maybe this is the time to practice this. Both teens discover more than they had originally intended.
Illustrated and adapted by Rafael Albuquerque
The Neil Gaiman Library is a series of graphic novels by Dark Horse Comics that partners fantastic artists who adapt a short story by Gaiman. Every Comic Con, I see a shelf full of new ones and I scoop them all up. Gaiman has appeal to comicbook readers thanks to his creation of The Sandman, and he also appeals to novel readers thanks to Coraline, American Gods, Stardust, The Graveyard Book (which was adapted into a fantastic graphic novel), and many others. The books in this series are that same blend of gothic and fantasy that readers enjoy from Gaiman's other works, and they showcase art by some fantastic creators.
Fans may know Albuquerque from his run of various characters in the DC franchise, but most recently, Albuquerque has been tapped to work on a Dark Horse art book for The Witcher 3, an increasingly popular video game.
I've been reading Manga and comicbooks for years. Now, it's time to share my knowledge with you.
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