Comic Classics Great Expectations


Jack Noel retells Charles Dickens’ classic story in Comic Classics Great Expectations. Once more we are led to the Thames Marshes, to face the harsh hand of Mrs Joe Gargery and the terrifying appearance of Magwitch.

When Pip is invited to play with Estella, he sees himself and thereafter the forge, in a different light. Furthermore, a fund to educate him in the ways of a gentleman appears to come from Estella’s ward, the haunted Miss Havisham, or has it?

The anecdotal illustrations elevate Charles Dickens’ story, making it more accessible and inviting us to consider and infer. Great Expectations is a rare title where we are invested in our hero, who, at various points, lets us down. Thoughtfully, Jack Noel reminds us of this, yet also helps us understand Pip’s motivation. Therefore, we feel sympathetic albeit helpless to his actions, responses and understanding.

The illustrations are superb for they offer atmosphere, setting and character imaginatively and fittingly, e.g., in depictions of Estella. The limited colour palette of newsprint tones, interspersed with a tangerine, is employed empathetically.

Comic Classics Great Expectations is an informed, respectful, witty and fulfilling interpretation. Bookwagon is delighted to recommend this book to our readers.


Comic Classics Great Expectations

An Old Book by Charles Dickens with new doodles by Jack Noel


Alongside anecdotal illustrations Jack Noel presents, Comic Classics Great Expectations. While the story is an historical, layered classic, the illustrator’s approach is respectful and thorough. Once more we are taken to the Thames Marshes and feel Magwitch’s cry, ‘Hold still you little devil or I’ll cut your throat! Thereafter we realise Pip’s fallibility for Estella and within his change of fortune. While Pip’s desertion of Joe Gargery from their early bond has always struck me as harsh, reading this revival, anew, I realise how Joe forged (pun, sorry) a new life. Thereafter, their relationship appears restored.
I read this title a couple of times for it offers a new appreciation of the story. Furthermore, I realised fundamental truths in the story again, including the damage done to so many through Miss Havisham’s revenge.
Jack Noel’s asides and interventions take nothing away from the story; in fact they’re a ‘relief’ in some way, a pleasing extension. In addition his illustrations realise the characters really satisfyingly.
Like Jane, the Fox & Me which revisits a classic, this interpretation is a delight. Bookwagon looks forward to more titles in this series.


There are no reviews yet.

Be the first to review “Comic Classics Great Expectations”

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may also like…