Review: Manga Classics: Pride & Prejudice by Stacy King

21433253Manga Classics: Pride & Prejudice
By: Stacy King, Po Tse (Illustrator), and Jane Austen
Publisher: Udon Entertainment
Published: Aug. 19, 2014
Genre: Manga

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Beloved by millions the world over, Pride & Prejudice is delightfully transformed in this bold, new manga adaptation. All of the joy, heartache, and romance of Jane Austen’s original, perfectly illuminated by the sumptuous art of manga-ka Po Tse, and faithfully adapted by Stacy E. King.

When Elizabeth Bennet first meets eligible bachelor Fitzwilliam Darcy, she thinks him arrogant and conceited, while he struggles to remain indifferent to her good looks and lively mind. When she later discovers that Darcy has involved himself in the troubled relationship between his friend Bingley and her beloved sister Jane, she is determined to dislike him more than ever. In the sparkling comedy of manners that follows, Jane Austen shows the folly of judging by first impressions and superbly evokes the friendships, gossip and snobberies of provincial middle-class life.

I must admit that I’ve never read Pride and Prejudice. I’m not one for classics. Maybe it’s because I’ve been turned off by the fact that they were forced on me in school. Who knows, so I’ve never really had any desire to read P&P. However, I love reading manga, and when I saw this, I thought it was a perfect opportunity to see what everyone is talking about without bogging myself down in a massive book. You know, kind of like cliffnotes but comic book style.

I must say that I don’t think I’d have enjoyed the original story. Just the fact alone that not a lot progresses in this manga, I couldn’t imagine drawing it out for hundreds of pages. I think the manga does a great job summing up the story in entertaining illustrations. The artwork is great and has the feel of a historical classic while still keeping true to the manga feel.

Maybe it’s just me but I was not a Darcy fan. Heck, I wasn’t even a Elizabeth fan. So, the story itself didn’t really do it for me. The first day Darcy meets Elizabeth he goes off about how she’s a country bumpkin, who’s only out to get money, and how his friend had already set his sights on the prettiest one of the sisters. However, after giving this beautiful speech, to which Elizabeth overhears, he ends up having a change of heart the next time they meet. Now she’s the more beautiful woman he’s ever met and he chases her throughout the rest of the book. Meanwhile, after hearing such awful things about her, she pines away for him at first. Then decides he finds himself above her, and then she loathes him and tries to find another husband. I get that the story is called Pride and Prejudice for a reason but it all just seemed silly to me. I definitely could not have read the original novel.

I think this is a great novel for those who’ve read the classic, to see the characters come to life. However, it’s also great for people who haven’t read the book. It gives us an idea of what the book is about without overwhelming us with a huge book.

ppI just thought this was funny because she always talks about how ornery he is and the fact that him being betrothed to someone who is meek and sickly would be a huge contrast to his character.


5 Thoughts on “Review: Manga Classics: Pride & Prejudice by Stacy King

  1. I am with you, I have never read and though I should, I probably won’t in the future.

  2. I wasn’t a huge fan of the story either (I read the book, not the comic). Overall, I liked the classic, but it’s definitely not one of my favorites.

    • I can appreciate it for setting the pace for romance novels out today. But I just didn’t really care for the characters. Maybe the book is different than the manga?

  3. I would have never thought of turning P&P into a manga adaptation. I think that is rather creative and an interesting way to tell the story. The one illustration you posted totally cracks me up! I think I’d get a lot of laughs from reading this version.

    P&P is one of my favorite books. Not everyone likes it or has read it, obviously, and that is just fine. I would say though, that in the original work there is quite a bit of time and a lot of things that go on in-between Elizabeth and Darcy meeting, so in this variation it sounds like you’re missing all of that and just jumping from one spot to another, which would change how you perceive the story. P&P is actually not a long story. I think it’s not even 300 pages. It isn’t for everyone though, so I think this one worked enough for you.

    I really enjoyed your review! That pict still cracks me up…

    • Great point, Tressa. It is true that Manga adaptations do tend to shorten the story some. I just couldn’t get behind Darcy. Maybe he’s portrayed differently in the story vs the manga?

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