Synopses & Reviews
and#147;Someone must have been slandering Joseph K, because one morning, without having done anything wrong, he was suddenly arrested.and#8221; The Trial is a graphic adaptation of Franz Kafkaand#8217;s famous novel, illustrated by one of Franceand#8217;s leading graphic artists, Chantal Montellier. Montellier brilliantly captures both the menace and the humor of Kafkaand#8217;s utterly unique masterwork. This darkly humorous tale follows Joseph K, who is arrested one morning for unexplained reasons and forced to struggle against an absurd judicial process. K finds himself thrown from one disorientating encounter to the next as he becomes increasingly desperate to prove his innocence in the face of unknown charges. In its stark portrayal of an authoritarian bureaucracy trampling over the lives of its estranged citizens, The Trial is as relevant today as ever.
"In Kafka's famed story, bank clerk Joseph K is arrested for a crime that didn't take place and put on a trial that never occurs. This faithful graphic novel adaptation depicts not just the comical, nightmarish and absurdist themes explored by Kafka but also his gravitation to and mistrust of women. Artist Montellier's heavy shadows cast The Trial in a dark world framed with detailed embellishments that spill out of panels, creating a dreamlike (albeit a nightmare) quality. The surreal feeling of the story, and Kafka's absurdist view of reality, make this adaptation a dense read, full of strange imagery and, overall, a bit overwhelming. Although a clear, visual rendering of the feeling kafkaesque, a new, grotesque element is added with every scene, making it difficult to digest the events of the plot. Likely good supplemental reading to Kafka's actual novel, this graphic novel may serve as a useful entry point to his writing for teachers and librarians." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
andldquo;Hineandrsquo;s script neither shrinks from nor winks at the taleandrsquo;s over-the-top melodrama, and Staffordandrsquo;s elaborately cursive and pointy drawing style, awash in darkness and saturated colors, expresses it near perfectly.andrdquo;
andldquo;Although his visage inspired Batmanandrsquo;s most splendiferous villain, the Joker, Gwynplaineandrsquo;s commonsense polemics still resonate, whether in Occupy protests or speeches by Elizabeth Warren.andrdquo;
The Man Who Laughs (first published in 1869) is Victor Hugoandrsquo;s scathing indictment of the injustice and inequality within Britainandrsquo;s political system. It is the story of Gwynplaine, the two-year-old heir to a rebel lord, who is abducted upon the orders of a vindictive monarch, and whose face is mutilated into a permanent grisly grin, then abandoned. After years of living in poverty, Gwynplaine is reintroduced to the aristocratic life and resolves to become the voice of the voicelessandmdash;whether he is heard or not. Author David Hine and artist Mark Stafford introduce Hugoandrsquo;s classic to a new generation of fans in this graphic-novel adaptation of abduction, mutilation, loss, and prejudice.
About the Author
Victor Hugo (1802andndash;1885) was one of the most prominent French writers and political figures of the 19th century. David Hine has worked in comics since the 1980s, and has written Batman for DC Comics, as well as Spider-Man and X-Men for Marvel Comics. He lives in London. Mark Stafford is a cartoonist-in-residence at the Cartoon Museum in London. He has collaborated with Costa awardandndash;winning Bryan Talbot on Cherubs!
He lives in London.