"All that glisters is not gold."
Antonio needs to borrow a huge sum of money to help out his friend Bassanio. Shylock, a rich banker, agrees to lend him the money -- but if Antonio can't pay it back on time, the consequences will be terrible.
Meanwhile, Bassanio is in love with the beautiful Portia -- and he's not the only one . . .
Here is one of Shakespeare's most famous plays, vividly and faithfully retold in graphic novel format.
Antonio, the merchant of Venice, owes a large debt to Shylock, the moneylender. Worse, Antonio faces death if he fails to repay the money. When his merchant ships are lost at sea, Antonio's wealth is lost along with them, and Shylock demands a pound of Antonio's flesh to satisfy the unpaid debt. Antonio pleads his case in a court of law, where he is brilliantly defended by Portia, the clever young wife of his dear friend Bassanio.
"The quality of mercy is not strained."
Graphic Classics available from Barron's
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
• Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
• Gulliver's Travels
• The Hunchback of Notre Dame
• Jane Eyre
• Journey to the Center of the Earth
• Julius Caesar
• The Last of the Mohicans
• The Man in the Iron Mask
• The Merchant of Venice
• Moby Dick
• The Odyssey
• Oliver Twist
• Romeo and Juliet
• A Tale of Two Cities
• The Three Musketeers
• Treasure Island
• 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
• Wuthering Heights
.Gr 4 6—Two more entries in Barron's series, not to be confused with Eureka's series of the same name. The stories are encapsulated in two-page units of plot and circumstance for easy consumption. Captions explain the events, pictures help to differentiate among the characters, and the volumes are rife with footnotes and explication at the bottom of every page. Breaking the story down into bite-size chunks helps with vocabulary and comprehension, but can wreak havoc with the pacing. Readers are apt to find Merchant overlong, with the narrowly focused chapters giving some of Shakespeare's short, establishing scenes an accidental or unfortunate weight. However, Macdonald strives to maintain as much of the Bard's original language as possible. This effort to represent the original material may be hard going for readers, but it provides an authentic experience that the much looser adaptation of Mohicans can't match. Merchant's artwork focuses on heads and faces, giving each character an opportunity to act out the dialogue, and works quite well, both narratively and educationally.—Benjamin Russell, Belmont High School, NH