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The Witches: The Graphic Novel

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Roald Dahl's darkly funny masterpiece, The Witches, now available as a graphic novel from Eisner Award-winning artist Pénélope Bagieu! Witches are real, and they are very, very dangerous. They wear ordinary clothes and have ordinary jobs, living in ordinary towns all across the world -- and there's nothing they despise more than children. When an eight-year-old boy and his Roald Dahl's darkly funny masterpiece, The Witches, now available as a graphic novel from Eisner Award-winning artist Pénélope Bagieu! Witches are real, and they are very, very dangerous. They wear ordinary clothes and have ordinary jobs, living in ordinary towns all across the world -- and there's nothing they despise more than children. When an eight-year-old boy and his grandmother come face-to-face with the Grand High Witch herself, they may be the only ones who can stop the witches' latest plot to stamp out every last child in the country! This full-color graphic novel edition of Roald Dahl's The Witches, adapted and illustrated by Eisner Award winner Pénélope Bagieu, is the first-ever Dahl story to appear in this format. Graphic novel readers and Roald Dahl fans alike will relish this dynamic new take on a uniquely funny tale.


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Roald Dahl's darkly funny masterpiece, The Witches, now available as a graphic novel from Eisner Award-winning artist Pénélope Bagieu! Witches are real, and they are very, very dangerous. They wear ordinary clothes and have ordinary jobs, living in ordinary towns all across the world -- and there's nothing they despise more than children. When an eight-year-old boy and his Roald Dahl's darkly funny masterpiece, The Witches, now available as a graphic novel from Eisner Award-winning artist Pénélope Bagieu! Witches are real, and they are very, very dangerous. They wear ordinary clothes and have ordinary jobs, living in ordinary towns all across the world -- and there's nothing they despise more than children. When an eight-year-old boy and his grandmother come face-to-face with the Grand High Witch herself, they may be the only ones who can stop the witches' latest plot to stamp out every last child in the country! This full-color graphic novel edition of Roald Dahl's The Witches, adapted and illustrated by Eisner Award winner Pénélope Bagieu, is the first-ever Dahl story to appear in this format. Graphic novel readers and Roald Dahl fans alike will relish this dynamic new take on a uniquely funny tale.

30 review for The Witches: The Graphic Novel

  1. 5 out of 5

    Chessa

    I love The Witches - the original book, the movie from the 90’s - and now this graphic novel adaptation! The art was really fun and fresh - kind of a child-like, quirky quality that I think will appeal to kids especially (particularly love how Grandmama is drawn!). The author did a great job of incorporating minor updates that helps the material feel more contemporary. Recommended for long-time Dahl fans, but a fun way to introduce a whole new audience to his work!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Ms. Yingling

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. E ARC provided by Edelweiss Plus I am not a fan of Dahl, which is odd considering that he started writing when I was a child. His work is odd, and not in a pleasant way. He may be the reason that so many British writers portray adults as inherently evil and cruel to children. Not only that, but Dahl was, by all accounts, not very nice (https://www.bbc.com/culture/article/2...). My library has a few books that were purchased before I got here; I haven't added any others, and had never read The Wit E ARC provided by Edelweiss Plus I am not a fan of Dahl, which is odd considering that he started writing when I was a child. His work is odd, and not in a pleasant way. He may be the reason that so many British writers portray adults as inherently evil and cruel to children. Not only that, but Dahl was, by all accounts, not very nice (https://www.bbc.com/culture/article/2...). My library has a few books that were purchased before I got here; I haven't added any others, and had never read The Witches (1983). Still not a huge fan, but I might get the graphic novel for my bloodthirsty readers who all want to snuggle up with a good murder. **Spoilers** A young boy goes to live with his eccentric, chain smoking grandmother after the death of his parents. He's used to being told bedtime stories, and so grandmother tells him one about the witches of the world who all hate children. They are bald, have weird fingers and toes, and odd eyes. When the grandmother becomes ill, the doctor visits and recommends a trip to the seaside for the cool air. Once there, the boy gets a present of two mice, but the hotel wants them to be kept in a cage. Since this interferes with training them to do circus tricks, the boy hunts around the hotel for a vacant space and finds an empty conference room. Soon, however, it is filled with women.. all wearing wigs and looking suspiciously like his grandmother's tales of witches. Sure enough, the Grand High Witch herself is there, and unveils her plan to turn all of the children in the world into mice while they are at school so that the teachers kill them. She has the serum developed, and needs to witches to set up candy shops to distribute the potion. She turns a girl into a mouse before their eyes, and turns the boy as well. The two children manage to get back to the grandmother, and they plan to snatch a bottle of potion, does the witches, and avert disaster by having them turn into mice. It's a plan fraught with peril, but they are successful. Returning home, the boy decides to stay a mouse, since his grandmother is 83 to his 8, and he will live about as long as she does if he remains in mouse form. Strengths: The drawings are excellently creepy, even though they don't bear any resemblance to Quentin Blake's illustrations at all. The grandmother is very supportive of her grandson, and clearly loves him. She is quite the character. The story moves quickly, and the adaptation manages to describe things in enough detail that it's all easy to understand. Weaknesses: This has some fairly gross and disturbing moments, with the boy in mouse form getting his tail hacked off in the kitchen, the witches turning into mice, and the head witch revealing her true form. What I really think: So disturbing, and not in any sort of instructive way. There's no allegorical, moral lesson, and the fact that the boy wanted to stay a mouse so he would die when his grandmother did... just not my idea of a pleasant read. Others will enjoy this foray into Dahl's dark world, but I think I developed a new frown line or two reading this.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Krysta

    Source: ARC from Edelweiss The Witches: The Graphic Novel is a compelling adaptation of Roald Dahl’s classic novel. It embraces the slightly scary, but also funny, tone of the original, delivering a book that is sure to enthrall readers with its brave heroes and their quirky adventures. Readers who may not have picked up a Roald Dahl work on their own may be inspired to see what else he has written after being introduced to his imagination with this beautifully-illustrated adaptation. One of the a Source: ARC from Edelweiss The Witches: The Graphic Novel is a compelling adaptation of Roald Dahl’s classic novel. It embraces the slightly scary, but also funny, tone of the original, delivering a book that is sure to enthrall readers with its brave heroes and their quirky adventures. Readers who may not have picked up a Roald Dahl work on their own may be inspired to see what else he has written after being introduced to his imagination with this beautifully-illustrated adaptation. One of the aspects of The Witches I have always loved is the relationship between the boy and his grandmother. Many children’s books, of course, simply dispose of the parents altogether, so that the kid protagonists can experience danger and excitement unimpeded. Even the stories with adult authority figures, however, may not focus on grandparents. That Dahl chooses to feature a grandmother is therefore very special–and what a grandmother she is! She clearly loves her grandson dearly, but she does not coddle him, instead warning him of the perils of witches (and thereby possibly scarring him for life), and then allowing him to fight the witches because he believes it is right. She deftly balances her desire to care for him with her knowledge that she has to allow him room to grow. The grandmother, however, is not merely wise and lovable–she is also hilarious! The Witches is actually rather a creepy book–the titular characters really will do anything to rid the world of children and Dahl does not let his characters get away easily. So it is important that the story adds a bit of levity through the grandmother. She keeps the book from becoming too overwhelming for readers, allowing them to see that, even though there are scary things out in the world, there is also love, and laughter, and fun. She really is the heart of the story. Pénélope Bagieu’s illustrations are a good fit for Dahl’s story. The color palette is eye-catching and the art style is one that will likely appeal to children, while also maintaining a bit of that quirky edge readers may associate with Dahl. The panels expertly and smoothly guide readers through the story; this is no clunky adaptation, but a work that feels like it could have been written as a graphic novel from the start. Even readers who are not usually attracted to graphic novel adaptations of classic novels may inadvertently be lured in by this one. The Witches: The Graphic Novel expertly captures the spirit of Dahl’s story and transforms it into a new medium sure to attract a new contemporary audience. Fans of Dahl’s work will want to check this one out, but it stands on its own and will likely find its own readership, as well.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Mrs. Mazzola

    An interesting and revamped version of the classic Dahl story. I like that the story feels updated in the details and art, but still retains the same creepy, scary, horrifyingly funny quality of the original. Graphic novel adaptations do not circulate well in my library, so I will only purchase if excess funds are available. E ARC provided by Edelweiss+ and the publisher. All opinions are my own.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Liz

    A very entertaining, and sometimes heartwrenching, adaptation of my favorite Roald Dahl book. Absolutely love the art style and character designs!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Larakaa

    I read the German version. Very sweet!

  7. 4 out of 5

    Jeffrey Canino

    A fantastic graphic novel adaptation of Dahl's 1983 book about all of them witches and the chaos that unfolds when a boy (later, a mouse) attempts to thwart their plans for worldwide child rodent-ification. Bagieu's script makes subtle updates to the characters and dialogue of the original text in order to bring them into the 21st century, all while leaving intact Dahl's signature grim English charm. More importantly, her art fully renders the narrative her own. While Quentin Blake's original il A fantastic graphic novel adaptation of Dahl's 1983 book about all of them witches and the chaos that unfolds when a boy (later, a mouse) attempts to thwart their plans for worldwide child rodent-ification. Bagieu's script makes subtle updates to the characters and dialogue of the original text in order to bring them into the 21st century, all while leaving intact Dahl's signature grim English charm. More importantly, her art fully renders the narrative her own. While Quentin Blake's original illustrations seem some distant inspiration, Bagieu's loose, clear linework makes far more frightening and, just as often, amusing visual moments out of the story. Alternately endearing and grotesque character designs (her Grandmamma is a delightful stump of a human being, and her Grand High Witch is a snarling, angular beast) leave an enduring impression through their exaggeration, one that I do not envy the 2021 film adaptation for needing to top. In all, an enchanting flight of whimsy that argues there's no grandiose, genocidal evil that can't be foiled with the love and assistance of one's family and friends. Would that it were so simple. Out now from Scholastic!

  8. 4 out of 5

    David

    The artist Pénélope Bagieu turns out to be a great choice for this adaptation of Roald Dahl’s 1983 story. Some changes have been made with the addition of a new character, but it still sticks to the original structure of the story. Bagieu suits Dahl’s love of fantasy and the grotesque, but she also is able to translate the text into a different medium. We get glimpses of the fantasies of the lead character. Begieu uses the form to build suspense and takes advantage of the changes of perspective The artist Pénélope Bagieu turns out to be a great choice for this adaptation of Roald Dahl’s 1983 story. Some changes have been made with the addition of a new character, but it still sticks to the original structure of the story. Bagieu suits Dahl’s love of fantasy and the grotesque, but she also is able to translate the text into a different medium. We get glimpses of the fantasies of the lead character. Begieu uses the form to build suspense and takes advantage of the changes of perspective for the characters viewpoint. She also brings in the body language of the characters to comic or sinister effect. But she also is capable of handling the moments of tragedy and sadness within the story. Altogether this is an entertaining version of Dahl’s story for a whole new generation to delight in.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Kim Tyo-Dickerson

    Loved reading this new Scholastic Graphix title via Edelweiss+ digital reading copy, pages flying, on Roald Dahl Day, 13 September 2020 no less! My son raced through it this morning and we can't wait to get our hands on a hard copy! Utterly delightful interpretation of the Roald Dahl classic with vibrant, hilarious characterization in line, form, color - Bagieu has a marvelous comics style that is unique yet has echoes of Seuss and the original Quentin Blake drawings - and some new twists on the Loved reading this new Scholastic Graphix title via Edelweiss+ digital reading copy, pages flying, on Roald Dahl Day, 13 September 2020 no less! My son raced through it this morning and we can't wait to get our hands on a hard copy! Utterly delightful interpretation of the Roald Dahl classic with vibrant, hilarious characterization in line, form, color - Bagieu has a marvelous comics style that is unique yet has echoes of Seuss and the original Quentin Blake drawings - and some new twists on the beloved story that has enthralled and horrified children for so many years. Every school librarian should order multiple copies, G3 and up. My teens are going to love it as well.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Pam

    Graphic Novel I received an electronic ARC from Scholastic, Inc. through NetGalley. Bagieu captures the spirit, eeriness, love and humor of Dahl's novel in this retelling. Readers are drawn in by the text and the highly detailed drawings. They'll cheer for a young boy coming out of grief for his parents and still outwitting an entire country's witches. The graphics bring out the characters' emotions and move the story forward. A delight to introduce readers to Dahl's work in this style.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Emily

    The Witches: The Graphic Novel was fun and kids will enjoy it. However, the grandma smokes often (one of the kids did scold her for this) and the interior artwork wasn't as bright as the cover. Also, it ended rather abruptly, leaving me wondering if there will be a second book (or did I just not remember Dahl's ending?) But kids will like it.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Steph

    What a blasssst! So nostalgic to be reading The Witches again- but this time in a perfectly-creepy but absolutely-lovable graphic novel format. Hoping Roald Dahl’s books all re-emerge in this way! So, so good!!!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Sara

    I love Roald Dahl. The Witches with Angelica Houston is both fantastic and terrifying. And, I adore a good graphic novel. This was a perfect mix of a favorite traditional story, compelling art, and well paced graphics and text. Sooooo cute.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Anne

    A great adaptation. I really enjoyed the way the text was updated for the current generation of kids and the art was fantastic as well. Recommended for ages 8 and up. Maybe 10+ for more sensitive readers.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Tina

    Excellent version! I have been waiting to read this graphic novel for ages and it definitely did not disappoint! I remember reading the book and watching the movie when I was little and I was traumatized but fascinated, this is a much less traumatic version haha.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Josh Newhouse

    Perfect adaptation. And I loved Brunela? No name but a great update!

  17. 4 out of 5

    Bonnie Grover

    I loved the illustrations in this graphic novel remake of Roald Dahl’s The Witches. I hope there are more books to come.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Andréa

    Note: I accessed a digital review copy of this book through Edelweiss.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Jody

    Read the e-galley version and the word bubbles weren't complete so it was a bit hard to follow. Funny, kinda scary illustrations when it comes to the witches. Made me want to watch the movie again.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Tam I

    Read an ARC Excellent graphic adaptation of this book.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Myos

    AWESOME graphic novel/adaptation based on Roald Dahl's novel: smart, funny, scary, silly! For all ages, 7 and older! :)

  22. 4 out of 5

    Ruby Lee

    Very true to the book, complete with the sassy Grandmother!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Clay

    Terrific graphic adaption of Roald Dahl's "The Witches" as only the author of "Brazen: Rebel Ladies Who Rocked the World" could do it. Loved the lilac-haired, cigar-smoking Grandmother. Recommended.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Melissa

    honestly loved this

  25. 4 out of 5

    Beth

    ARC provided by Scholastic.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Katie Reilley

    This graphic novel version of Dahl’s The Witches did not disappoint! (Mostly) true to the original story, this version will bring a new generation of readers all the shivers as the classic.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Lindsey Pierz

    So wonderful to see a beloved favorite of my childhood turned into a graphic novel!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Roxane Barbey

    A lovely adaptation. The grandma was fantastic!

  29. 4 out of 5

    mytaakeonit

    Love the art style. The chain-smoking grandmother is my favorite character! lol

  30. 4 out of 5

    Robin

    Still prefer the Quentin Blake illustrations

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