Merchant of Venice (Graphic Novel)
by Garath Hinds
Following his uber-impressive and successful Beowulf Hinds has decided to tackle one of Shakespeare more thorny plays. His tact is most interesting; as the verbiage begins in modern language and gradually returns to the Bard’s original word. This is a clever device that drags the reader in whether well versed in Shakespeare or not.
As one would expect from Hinds this book is lovingly and lushly illustrated. It gives a great feeling of modern Venice with a strong hint to its long lost past. I would highly recommend reading the afterword by the author himself. He makes a very good case for his approaching this particular play; which on the face of it seems to be highly anti-semitic.
Might slight worry with this impressive piece is that it makes this play even more accessible to those who seek to justify their Jew-hatred. This type frequently cite historical references to justify their idiocy; let us hope this does not join their pantheon of citations. Truth be told I do not honestly think that Shakespeare set out to write a rant against Jews. The piece is far deeper than that.
On face value the tale of Portia and her many suitors as brilliant portrayed by the talented Hinds. This is an impressive piece of work no matter what you might think of the basic subject matter.