Saturday, April 20, 2019

Cartoon Saturday

Terciero, Rey and Indigo, Bre (Illustrations)
Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy: A Graphic Novel: A Modern Retelling of Little Women
February 5th 2019 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

The March family lives in a brownstone in the city. Their mother is a harried hospital nurse, and their father is fighting overseas. Things are economically tough, and each girl has their own wishes for Christmas that don't come true. Jo, whose biological father left when she was a baby but who was adopted by Robert March when he married her mother, what great literature. Meg, the oldest, wants the latest fashion. Beth, the quiet musician, wants her own guitar, and bratty Amy just wants everything. When wealthy neighbor Mr. Marquez invites them to share Christmas dinner with him, they meet his grandson, Laurie. There are triumphs and tragedies along the way that echo the ones in Alcott's book but are modernized. Several things do change, such as the trajectory of Beth's disease and of Meg's romance, and a surprise announcement from Jo.
Strengths: The events are convincingly updated with added diversity. The characters stay fairly true to form. The illustrations are quite nice, and the colors are good. There are some e mails and journal entries that help explain some more complicated events, like how the family was created. It remains, as always, a good tale of sisterhood and finding yourself in the face of adversity.
Weaknesses: Readers who love the original won't necessarily like some of the updates, but since few people under the age of 50 have read the original, it's not really a concern.
What I really think: I didn't buy Schaefer's 2017 Littler Women: A Modern Retelling  and Baratz-Logstead's 2012 Little Women and Me doesn't circulate too well (although it is SUPER clever and fun). The Anne of Green Gables graphic novel I have goes out occasionally, but it's a paperback and doesn't have this look to it. If your library can't keep Telgemeier and Jamieson books on the shelf, this would be a good purchase, but I don't think it will necessarily encourage readers to pick up the original. I prefer updates to original stories that are more along the lines of Jason Henderson's Young Captain Nemo--  more reimaginings than retellings.

1 comment:

  1. After reading your thoughts about this book, I checked to see if the NYPL has it and most of the copies in the different branches are checked out - which is heartening to see. And I put a hold on it while I was there. I wish kids would read the original, too, but the interest just doesn't seem to be there nowadays.