Of course I read comic books as a child. I mostly stuck with the tame, humorous fare: Archie, Casper, Richie Rich, nothing too serious for an eight year old. But I, like all those who pass into adulthood, put off such childish things, or so I thought. For those who can’t decide between Middlemarch and an X-Men comic book, now you don’t have to.
Several classics have been adapted to the panel-based comic book style, making these works available to those who might otherwise avoid books with dense text and nothing to stimulate the visual sense. Passing through a bookstore near the start of the Well-Read Man project, I picked up a graphic novel version of Ray Bradbury’s Farenheit 451. Drawn by Tim Hamilton, this 150-page colorful implementation of Bradbury’s classic is an “authorized adaptation.” Bradbury blessed the genre, calling this edition a “further rejuvenation” of his original story.
Several books from this project have made the transition over to illustrations, including some of the most serious and non-comical works every written: The Jungle, The Metamorphosis, even The Origin of Species. In Japan, you can find a manga version of the Bible that churches actually use for evangelical purposes. Oh brave new world that has such comics in it!