Emma: Manga Classics adapted by Stacy King and illustrated by Tse
So my niece’s birthday was the second of February and this is the year she turns 16, I decided to do my annual gift of Pride and Prejudice. I first read it when I turned 16, so now I gift as a 16th birthday gift.
So I decided to get a copy for my niece…but only one problem-my niece isn’t a big fan of reading. She doesn’t hate it, but is more into Netflix, K-Dramas, Anime, tiktok, etc. You know how I feel about that…
So I am planning something else to celebrate her birthday, but I figured I would get her the book too. But then I was looking online at Barnes and Nobles to decide what I wanted to spend my christmas gift card on, and I spotted Emma and Pride and Prejudice manga.
My niece loves Webtoons so I figured that a Manga would be the route to go! I looked at the two and was going to buy Pride and Prejudice when I looked at the Emma manga. Emma would be perfect as a manga as it has great comedic moments and the style would fit perfect for some of these characters. I mean think how fun some of the more extreme characters would be in this-Mrs. Elton for example.
My niece also LOVES Clueless so I figured it would be the perfect in to Jane Austen, and espechially Emma.
While it differs from tradition, I think she will love it, so I ordered the book.
We then went to the bookstore last weekend and my niece was looking at the manga wanting to buy one, but couldn’t settle on one. I was so pleased as I have one ready.
But then, of course like last year’s P.S. I Like You, I needed to read it first so I could review it.
So I read this book and I just absolutely LOVED it! I started reading and couldn’t put it down at all. They did such a good job with selecting which parts of the novel and text to use and pairing them with the illustrations. It was incredibly enjoyable, and I highly recommend it for any Austen fan.
These illustrations were also 100% perfect.
I loved Mr. Knightley’s reaction to Emma:
I laughed so hard at this one of Mrs. Elton and everyone who dislikes her:
Look how gorgeous they drew Emma’s dress for the ball:
Ugh, Frank’s temper tantrum. They did him perfectly. Like, wah little baby!
It was fantastic and I loved in the back how they detailed their process in adapating the novel to manga. I absolutely loved it and again, I recommend it to any Jane Austen or Manga fans.
I can’t wait to check out their Pride and Prejudice version. Maybe for Christmas?
Three more episodes left and than I am done FOOOOOOOREEEEEEEEEEEVVVVVVEEEEEEEEEEEEEER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
So if you have been following me you know that I hate this show. I really, really do not like this or how they portray the characters.
But I started it, so I’ve got to finish it.
So Austentatious is the story of Elinor, Marianne, Emma, Elizabeth, and Mr. Knightley being friends in modern times. But they don’t involve ANY Austen plots or subplots. In fact, besides names they hardly share anything with the original source material.
So in the last episode Elinor and Edward were doing IRS stuff and she is smitten with him, Marianne accidentally dyed herself blue and met Knightley’s friend Nurse Brandon (he chose not to be a doctor big plot point in the previous episode), the friends set Emma up on blind dates to get back at the disastrous dates she paired them with, and Elizabeth had acrylic nails that she hated.
Yes…this is why I don’t like this show.
For the thousandth time
So Edward is back, and he and Elinor have finished getting their IRS stuff all together.
Elinor has a hoodie on, which seems really weird as we spent a large time with her being on Marianne’s case about being a good worker and professional, and she was promoted to be in charge-so why isn’t she dressing professionally?
Elinor is on cloud nine as she loves her IRS man (one of the few people who are happy to see and deal with the IRS). She gets home and Emma and Knighltley are at her house…or is it all their houses? They never make that quite clear and everyone is always in that one apartment.
Emma is on break and Knightey is bored. What does he do for a living? He dresses nice but never seems to be doing anything at all…
Elizabeth and Marianne bought an exercise bike and brought it to Elinor’s apartment. So if it is Marianne and Elinor’s apartment why are Emma and Knightley over when she isn’t? Why don’t they go to their houses? I mean I must not be the only one who finds it weird that their friends hang out in their apartment when they aren’t home do I?
I mean if they were going to just use one location then they should have had them share an apartment or a house.
Emma is “working” and wearing a hoodie and ripped jeans? Like what is going on with the clothes today? This whole entire show Emma was a fashionista and as a lawyer always dressing professionally. What is happening here? I feel like I’m in the Twilight Zone, more than ever.
Emma: [To Grant Knightley] “What’s the point of having all those muscles if you don’t help a damsel when she’s in distress?”
I actually like that line. One flake of gold in the whole program.
Emma and Elinor leave Elizabeth and Knightley to put it together as they head over to the smoothie shop to “work”. Emma is secretly reading a regular book instead of a law tome, as it turns out she lied to get out of putting the machine together. I knew there was a reason she wasn’t dressed in her usual wear.
Marianne goes to Emma for advice over Elinor and Elinor’s mad, but I don’t blame Marianne for thinking Elinor knows zip. She doesn’t have a great track record, I mean I saw the makeover/date episode.
Elinor complains that they are being loud and distracting as she is working. Well helloooo Elinor you are in a public shop-if you want quiet why don’t you go home and work in your room or go back to the office?
I mean for real!
Lizzie and Grant/Knightley are trying to put the bike together and are seriously struggling. Grant tries to convince Lizzie to get a gym membership like him instead, and Lizzie is surprised that Grant goes once or twice a week to the gym.
Okay that was funny.
Lizzie doesn’t want to go to the gym as they are gross and full of sweaty people, people hog the machines, creepy guys-I feel for you Lizzie, although I don’t have a gym membership as I don’t have time.
Emma can’t stop thinking about the exercise machine is freaking out about her weight and the cupcakes she is eating at the shop. But then she is distracted when Elinor accuses her of manipulating Grant Knightley and that Emma takes him for granted. (She does).
Back at the apartment Grant and Lizzie are talking but Grant is the only one doing anything while Elizabeth is just chilling. That’s how my sister would be.
Grant is struggling and he calls Brandon to help put it together, but doesn’t tell him that he needs his help to put a bike together…a bike that doesn’t even belong to him.
I mean for real!
Marianne comes home and Lizzie is all mad that Marianne bought a take and bake pizza. She’s all why buy a pizza and take it home to cook-well gee Elizabeth maybe I don’t want to take the time to do it myself, maybe I don’t want to travel with my cooked pizza getting cold on the way home, maybe I want to make it when I want to, maybe I want my house to smell of pizza and not pizza grease, maybe I like how it tastes, maybe I got a good deal-I could go on and on with different reasons. Pizza is always good.
It’s times like these I am like we are sooooooo far off what the plot was in any of the books. Like Jane Austen has soooo much for you to work with-and yet you decide to do acrylic nails, exercise bikes, and whether take and bake pizzas are worth your money.
I am so upset right now.
This is awful!
Brandon is so into Marianne, it is soooo cute. This guy, Blake Webb is saving this episode. I don’t know if he read the book or watched an adaption but he is the only one that got his character. You sure are going to make these last few episodes bearable, and I’d appreciate it if you could teach the guy who is Darcy how to act like his character.
Speaking of which there are only three episodes left (including this one) and we have yet to resolve the Darcy house issue, Brandon and Marianne need to get together, Elinor and Edward need to get togther, and Emma and Knightley need to match up. There are a lot of loose ends and only 50 mins until resolution (I paused 10 in and each episode is 20 mins). And what about Collin, is he coming back too?
So back to the Smoothie Shop Elinor admits to Emma she really likes Edward and all I can think is what about Lucy? In fact what about Fanny Dashwood, Lady Catherine, Mr. Wickham, Mr. Willoughby, Frank Churchill, Jane Fairfax, etc.? Where are the villains and character foils? Where is the drama? Where is the comedy? Where are the components of Jane Austen we love, her giant tapestry of plots and characters, and so on.
Where are the Austen things and characters I love??!!
I am extremely disappointed.
Like in the Jane Austen Academy they kept the issues from the books and transferred them to the story. Instead of losing her home-Anne lost her school that her ancestors had founded, Elizabeth is sparring with Darcy, Fredrick Wentworth is back in town, you know….
Elinor wants to date Edward but isn’t sure as they wok together-but they don’t, not really. I mean Elinor is an accountant and he’s with the IRS so you do not work together and it won’t be breaking any rules.
Emma encourages Elinor, trying to get her to ask Edward out, but Elinor says she physically can’t. We then get a flashback of her being geeky and struggling. I think she looks cute with glasses on, glasses that we never ever see her wear again. Hello actors and actresses that’s not how glasses work. Even if you do wear contacts, you eventually have to wear glasses again or else you’ll mess up your eyes. And what’s wrong with having a character wear glasses. We defintely need more characters who wear them.
So Lizzie and Marianne are not helping at all, while the guys do all the work. Brandon is so into Marianne, still being cute. Grant/Knightley is like you don’t know that much about Marianne are you sure and Brandon is all I know her medical history (last episode). Whoever wrote his lines- you get a gold star, you are actually getting some laughs out of me.
Knightley/Grant is the one doing all the work, while Brandon is distracted by Marianne. Knightley/Grant is like dude just ask her out so we can get this torture machine put together and Brandon is all no, I need her to get to know me first. Awww, Brandon you are actually making watching this bearable. Too bad you weren’t here earlier.
Grant/Knightley is all it’s better to ask someone out and be possibly turned down then to become a friend and stuck in the friendzone. Hmm…who could he be talking about?
The pizza burns as Lizzie and Marianne were too bust talking right next to it and didn’t notice, or smell it, and Lizzie is all that’s why you should never make or bake pizza at home. Whatever. How did they not notice it, being right next to the oven? How could they with the vast amount of choices and plots to use decide to focus on take and bake pizzas.
Back to the Smoothie Shop, Elinor “I’m working stop distracting me” Dashwood is going on about how she wants Edward to ask her out. Girl you have two episodes left, better get to asking.
Elinor can’t move in that but decides to flat out tell Emma Grant is into her.
Like that wasn’t your secret to tell Elinor. And Emma is actually shocked at this. Really?
I present Exhibit A:
And let’s not forget his massaging you, paying for the food, tipping Marianne and making her look good at work because Emma told him to, putting the exercise bike together as Emma told him too, etc.
Mr. Knightley loves Emma
Elinor gets all psychoanalyzing Emma and Knightley, but they are interrupted when Elinor spots Edward at the smoothie shop.
Look at that guy…
Emma encourages Elinor to not hide behind the couch but go ask him out. I’m going to pause here and say I do NOT get why in movies do they always hide behind or underneath things when they spot someone they want to avoid. Who really would hide under a restaurant table or other things in public where is it dirty and you are sure to touch something you would rather not. Why not just make sure they only see the back of your head.
I mean for real!
Edward has like button up shirt and pants from circa 2005 there. Where did you get those, and put them back in their time machine please and thank you.
It’s not working for you. Those pants, that shirt…
Edward is there WITH A girl!!!
Is it Lucy? Are we finally getting some actual Jane Austen content???
Please, oh please!
Back at the apartment they are eating the burnt pizza, although I’m thinking why don’t they just order a new one.
The girls eat ice cream while the guys build the bike.
Poor Grant, he’s all sweaty and tired from doing 99% of the work. Poor dude. And all because you’ll do anything Emma tells you to do.
Poor Elinor is sad and depressed and Emma tries to cheer her up by saying maybe the girl is Edward’s sister and they are just creepy close. Really, Emma? Really?
Like HOW would that make her feel better? HOW? But this is so true, us women do this to each other all the time.
Grant Knightley takes a break and talks to Marianne, who decides to ask him for help with her guy problem. He tries to encourage her to not try to focus on making changes for guys but do changer herself only if she wants to do it. That instead she just needs to be herself. Aw, that’s cute. Even though I am sad/upset that there is no Fanny Price, Catherine Morland, Anne Elliot, Mr. Tilney, or Captain Wentworth I do like how Grant/Mr. Knightley is friends with everyone and counsels not just Emma but all the ladies. It is very cute and very well done.
The bike is finally put together, Emma tests it out, and it falls apart. Yes…that’s it. All that work for nothing. It’s supposed to be funny, but falls flat.
So where is the Jane Austen?!!! It’s like not even here, just a few drops. Why? Why? There is so much you could do, choose from, there is just so much…and this is what you came up with.
I can’t wait until I’m finally finished with this. Then I’ll be freeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!!!!
I was given this book in exchange for an honest review and as I started the month off with the modern Jane Austen Christmas adaption, Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe, I thought what better way to end the holidays than with a review of another modern Jane Austen Christmas adaption.
When I saw that this was a Persuasion adaption, I was jazzed, as Persuasion, Northanger Abbbey, and Mansfield Park are often ignored.
So let’s move on to the book. Persuasion was published after Jane Austen died, along with Northanger Abbey. It is a truly romantic story as our main character Anne Elliot, became engaged to marry Fredrick Wentworth (who was about to go off to war), but was persuaded to refuse him after hearing the arguments of all that could go wrong-he could die and she be widowed, he could return injured and unable to work, they could be penniless, they are young maybe they aren’t right for each other-and so on. She ends their engagement and he leaves, and years pass and Anne still loves him. She grows older, her father loses a lot of their fortune with poor business sense, and they have to rent out their home. While they have nosedived, her old flame is now Captain Fredrick Wentworth-having nothing to hold him back he took a lot of risks, made quite a bit of money, and rose in the Navy. He reenters Anne’s life when his sister rents Anne’s family home. They interact frequently, with her still in love with him and he still VERY hurt and upset with her.
Besides the romance of it, (that letter *sigh*), there is a lot of other things to love in this book. The powerful and wonderful relationship of Captain Wentworth’s sister and husband, Admiral & Mrs. Croft; Jane really puts some zingers in there about the way the culture viewed women; and more. It is a great book, and if you haven’t read it, you should check it out.
So with our tale-the story is set in modern day, Portland Oregon. The book switches between the present holiday time (2019) when Wentworth arrives back into Anne’s life, with flashbacks as to what happened between them eight years prior (2011).
Anne is the middle daughter to a politician, Senator Walter Elliot, but very content at staying out of the spotlight. The only times she enjoys everyone’s attention on her is when she is DJing and mixing tunes. But that was so long ago, now she is a professor of Creative Writing at Portland State University and the author of the novel, Perpetual Engagement. Her wanting to stay out of the spotlight also seems long ago as her father is in every paper with the rumored scandal he’s engaged in an extramarital affair, he may have misused funds, and he just landed in the hospital with a heart attack.
And right at this stressful time, made even more so by the fact that it is the holidays, her ex-fiance walks right back into her life.
Eric’s (Captain Fredrik Wentworth) sister, Sophia, and brother-in-law, Henry Croft, are renting Senator Walter Elliot’s house while he and his oldest daughter hide out in Sonoma. They invite him to spend the holidays with them, and he wants to spend time with his sister and family, as his brother David also lives there, but is not happy to run into Anne.
He still is angry over her breaking up with him, his time served in the Marines didn’t help him get over it and he is now the West Regional correspondent for the Associate Press.
I like that North and West decided to keep the military aspect of Wentworth as I hate when they do the modern adaptions of Colonel Brandon and make him a doctor, or nurse, or walking tour guide.
One thing that West and North added in this adaption, is that they made Wentworth African American. I personally love when I see biracial or multicultural romances as I am biracial and come from a multiracial family. I can’t help comparing this to Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe and how this book did it much better. Having Wentworth be a different race adds to the story, as he feels the reason Anne turned him down was not because she was afraid of what could happen-him dying, getting seriously injured, coming back a different person, meeting someone in his unit, being too young to know if she was really in love, etc (all valid concerns) and he believes it is his background and skin color that made her eventually turn him down (feeling the pressure from her father).
I felt that added to the tension, just like I believe in Austen’s work, that Captain Wentworth felt the same way-Anne said no because of his background not of her fear.
With Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe adding a twist of a gender swap did nothing to further the development of the characters or add to the story. There was no new avenue added other than Luke/Lizzie was a total jerk, the younger Bennet brothers/sisters were psychotic, and Darcy was so underdeveloped it was like when you buy those decorating kits that come with everything to decorate but have to buy/make the cookies separate, no substance at all.
So we travel back in time to 2011, when Eric and Anne met. So Eric’s brother David is in politics and interning with Senator Elliot, David drags Eric along with him to their holiday party. When he tries to escape the crowd that is not for him, he meets Anne- a beautiful curvy woman who loves junk food, music, and captures his heart.
So back in 2019, Anne is staying with her sister Mary as her plumbing is being taken care of…wait let’s stop a moment and talk about her sisters. In Austen’s book her sisters were awful narcissist-Elizabeth a spendthrift and bully to her sister and Mary a whiner and hypochondriac. Elizabeth isn’t really in this adaption, but North and West captured how I imagined a modern version of her to be, along with how Anne still cares for her.
“Anne loved her sister [Elizabeth] the way a woman might love a pair of beautiful but uncomfortable heels.”
So back to the story, Anne and Eric run into each other. And I really enjoyed that chapter. I think it was extremely well done in showing the character of Anne as in the previous one, which takes place in 2011, she is confident, assured, exclaims how she feels-and in this chapter, 2019, she can hardly speak to him and the way the authors described the feeling of heartbreak and how it affects the way you dress, eat, act, etc.-was perfect.
This chance meeting shocks both, more than they realize. With Anne, seeing how well Eric looked just magnified how much she had let herself disappear and slowly, in little steps does she find herself putting herself back together. With Eric-seeing how hurt, thin, sad-eyed, and broken Anne is doesn’t have him react in glee, but makes him reconsider the past and how maybe he was wrong in what he believed happened.
Meanwhile-reporters are harassing Anne trying to get a story, Sophie and David try their hand at matchmaking Anne and Eric, Charles’ younger sisters both make a play for Eric, and a Will Ellis starts going after Anne. Will Anne and Eric get their happily ever after? Or just remain two ships that bumped in the night and parted ways.
So I enjoyed this story. Being an adaption, I know they aren’t going to stray too far from the original plot-so I know the end-but they did add enough of their own style and twists that it kept my attention.
Being a modern adaption, there are changes from the original storyline-Sir Walter is a Senator, David is gay and a politician instead of a parson, they don’t do a big group vacation to Brighton or Bath, etc. But I think the authors did a good job trying to not stray too far from the original plot, but make it applicable to today.
I liked that we see more of Eric’s relationship with his siblings, and enjoyed their interactions.
They do change Captain Wentworth’s letter to Anne’s novel, which is cute-but I will always be partial to the letter.
I can’t help but compare this to Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe and how much better this is than that book. Both North and West paid attention to the family relationships in the original book, and even though some of the characters aren’t in it that long they give you the makeup of each family really well. You can tell that these authors love the original story and paid attention to the important parts of it.
Unlike Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe the characters all talk and act like real people and interact the way people do. I mean both took a story that spanned over a year, and condensed it into taking place in few weeks, but while in Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe where Darcy and Luke/Elizabeth have like three conversations with each other-mostly fighting and Darcy being I’m the best-with Holiday Mix Tape they did a great job developing the romance by showing us their interactions in the past (not just saying they have crushes in high school) which makes it believable them falling in love as we see they never fell out of love.
So I hated Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe and I think that if you are looking for a modern Jane Austen Christmas novel, you should check this out.
My only complaint about this book, is that every chapter starts with “Track __” as you know it is a holiday “mixtape” and Anne was a DJ, but the chapter titles are not real songs. I know, it bummed me out too as I thought it would be cute to add links to the Holiday Mix Tape playlist. If there was anything that I would want to be changed, that’s it.
So I asked this question on Instagram and got a zero response. I feel that this had a lot of potential so I’m going to answer it myself.
So I haven’t read every adaptation yet, I plan to, but haven’t yet. Out of the ones I have read these are one that I would love to see as a film or TV Show.
5) Jane Austen Academy Series by Cecilia Gray
So in this Jane Austen inspired work, Cecilia Gray takes the characters of Jane Austen’s novels and puts them in a boarding school high school together, pairing up who would be friends and having them live in modern times. She chose the characters Elizabeth Bennet, Elinor Dashwood, Emma Woodhouse, Catherine Morland, and Anne Elliot.
The drama comes when this boarding school goes co-ed! Gasp! Mr. Darcy, Mr. Wickham, and Captain Wentworth are coming and bringing all their dramas and the new owners want to change everything. Elizabeth has to save the school, help Anne get back with her love Wentworth, and deal with ugh Darcy.
So I have only read the first book (and need to continue the series, but just haven’t had a chance) and I like the idea-although there were a few things I didn’t agree with (like deleting Marianne Dashwood, why?) that would need to be fixed. I think this would be a good TV show-all the Austen characters as teenagers going to school together and unlike Austentatious, this book if turned show would actually keep the themes from the books instead of making it random nonsense.
For more on The Jane Austen Academy Series, go to Fall For You
4) Mr. & Mrs. Darcy Mysteries by Carrie Bebris
So Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth are married and happen upon stranger supernatural occurrences and start investigating-well, Elizabeth does and Darcy starts off along for the ride but joins in. In the first book they deal with the question of an insane or possessed Caroline Bingley. Has she gone mad? Is her husband gaslighting her? Or could she be posessed? In book two, Elizabeth’s sister, Kitty Bennet, is planning on marrying Henry Dashwood (John and Fanny’s son) but then he starts acting weird. Was he just pretending to be a nice guy and always a jerk? Or is he possessed by some malignant creature?
Elizabeth and Fitzwilliam Darcy are crimesolvers? I’d watch it hands down. It would be something for those who loved Death Comes to Pemberley and Supernatural. Sounds like a win-win and can fill a new hole on TV.
3) The Darcy Monologues and Dangerous to Know edited by Christina Boyd and et. al
So in The Darcy Monologues you have Pride and Prejudice envisioned fourteen different ways. Dangerous to Know: Jane Austen’s Rakes and Gentlemen Rogues is eleven different stories on the “bad boys” of Jane Austen.
So I still have to read Rational Creatures (I know shame on me, time just seems to slip away), but I think these would both be fun as a TV show, each story an episode. As The Darcy Monologues is about one subject you could do an episode from it and Dangerous to Know, to break it up, or just do a miniseries. I would love to see Mr. Darcy as the “Beast”, Pride and Prejudice as a Western, and of course Mr. Darcy Strikes Out as I LOVED Dandy Darcy and would love-love-love to see that. For Dangerous to Know I loved Henry Tilney’s older brother finding love and needing help from Catherine Morland, and when Colonel Fitzwilliam strikes a deal with an heiress to pretend to be interested in her so she can gain her inheritance.
I Love, Love, Love, Love, Love this book. We all loved the film Austenland, so why not turn the sequel into a film as well!! You have a broken hearted woman who loves Jane Austen and heads to Austenland to get over her troubles. There she sees characters from the previous book along with getting mired in a mystery!!!
It is a love story, a mystery, comedy, etc and so much fun. It wouldn’t quite work with how they ended the film Austenland, but you could always have Mrs. Wattlesbrook make a new one and try again. It would be FANTASTIC!! Please make it happen.
Chloe Parker enters a contest to compete in a documentary about Austenites. Each contestant will live in a Regency-esque world where they will compete in answering Austen Trivia-the winner receiving $100,000. It’s easy right? Wrong! It turns out that this is a Bachelor Reality Show in Regency Flair, all constants competing to win a “Mr. Darcy”.
I could see this being a movie, but even better as a TV Show. You make it in the style of a reality show, but all fake. It would be hilarious as they try and complete the Austen challenges while poking fun at real celebrity dating TV Shows.