Title: Manga Classics: The Jungle Book
Author: Crystal S. Chan
I received this ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
I was a little hesitant beginning this manga because the story is well-know, so it has a lot to live up to.
We begin the story in nineteenth century India where two wolves stumble upon a human baby they later name Mowgli. Along with Mother and Father Wolf, Baloo, the sleep bear, takes responsibility for raising Mowgli. However, Shere Khan, the tiger, wants Mowgli for himself.
After Shere Khan tricks the pack into egging Akela on to fight and impossible hunt, Shere Khan takes control and banishes Mowgli. Mowgli then finds friends with the monkeys and is later captured by them. What will happen to Mowgli? Will he keep true to his promise of skinning Shere Khan?
The manga is then proceeded by a series of short stories about The White Seal, Rikki-Tiki-Tavi, and Toomai. I probably enjoyed Rikki-Tiki-Tavi the most out of the three, but the other two were quite bland for me. While the original does include these stories, I felt them to be out of place in this manga…if anything, probably better left without.
I wanted to love this and had higher expectations since I have been enjoying the other Manga Classics so much. However, this one just fell short for me. The ending of the story of Mowgli left me unfulfilled and wanting more. While the addition of the three animal stories rings true to the original, I felt them to be out of place in this manga, and actually detracting from the manga as a whole. With that said, I do think that this would be great for someone younger since it is comprised of a bunch of short stories.