The Hound of the Baskervilles (Usborne Graphic Classics)

The Hound of the Baskervilles (Usborne Graphic Classics)

After reading all of the comic adaptations of The Hound of the Baskervilles I could find — nine of them, all told — for an upcoming article in Sherlock Holmes magazine, I was beginning to despair at finding a classic, faithful presentation. So many of them were “punched up”, made more dramatic in ways that didn’t serve the story.

SelfMadeHero had a faithful adaptation, to go with its other Sherlock Holmes graphic novels, but it’s hard to find in print now, and people have issues with the size of Holmes’ chin. The 1975 Marvel Preview magazine version is gorgeous, but even more difficult to find (and oddly paced due to a change in publishing plans). The MX Publishing translation of Petr Kopl’s work is amusing and funny but exaggerated and altered, with mashup overtones.

This is the most famous Sherlock Holmes story! Shouldn’t there be a good graphic novel version to recommend? Finally, I found it. The Hound of the Baskervilles (Usborne Graphic Classics) came out in 2018, adapted by Russell Punter and illustrated by Andrea da Rold. Long-time comic artist Mike Collins is credited as a consultant, and I suspect that’s why the storytelling works so well. Best of all, it’s under $10 for a faithful version that’s a pleasure to read.

The Hound of the Baskervilles (Usborne Graphic Classics)

The language is streamlined, but not so much that it loses all flavor. The characters are expressive (although Sir Henry and Holmes are a bit close in resemblance). There’s a slight change of the ending, to make what happens more clear to a younger audience, but nothing out of keeping with the original story’s intent.

It’s a very readable version, with attractive art that balances drama and characterization, and all the key moments included. This version is an excellent choice, particularly for younger readers. (The publisher recommends it for grades 4-8.)

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