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Gandhi: A Manga Biography

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The life of a true twentieth-century hero told in a vibrant graphic novel format. Through his quietly powerful leadership and influential use of nonviolent resistance in India's struggle against the British Raj, Mahatma Gandhi became one of the most revered figures of the modern era. While history has recorded Gandhi's words and deeds, the man himself has been eclips The life of a true twentieth-century hero told in a vibrant graphic novel format. Through his quietly powerful leadership and influential use of nonviolent resistance in India's struggle against the British Raj, Mahatma Gandhi became one of the most revered figures of the modern era. While history has recorded Gandhi's words and deeds, the man himself has been eclipsed by maxims of virtuosity that seem to have little resonance in our everyday lives. In Gandhi, the third volume in our exciting new manga biography series, created in conjunction with Emotional Content, Kazuki Ebine combines a gripping narrative with stunning illustrations to share Gandhi's inspiring and deeply human story with a whole new generation of readers. Developed in conjunction with Emotional Content.


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The life of a true twentieth-century hero told in a vibrant graphic novel format. Through his quietly powerful leadership and influential use of nonviolent resistance in India's struggle against the British Raj, Mahatma Gandhi became one of the most revered figures of the modern era. While history has recorded Gandhi's words and deeds, the man himself has been eclips The life of a true twentieth-century hero told in a vibrant graphic novel format. Through his quietly powerful leadership and influential use of nonviolent resistance in India's struggle against the British Raj, Mahatma Gandhi became one of the most revered figures of the modern era. While history has recorded Gandhi's words and deeds, the man himself has been eclipsed by maxims of virtuosity that seem to have little resonance in our everyday lives. In Gandhi, the third volume in our exciting new manga biography series, created in conjunction with Emotional Content, Kazuki Ebine combines a gripping narrative with stunning illustrations to share Gandhi's inspiring and deeply human story with a whole new generation of readers. Developed in conjunction with Emotional Content.

30 review for Gandhi: A Manga Biography

  1. 4 out of 5

    David Stewart

    This was awful. It shocks me that something like this could get through the editing process and whatever quality control that Penguin has in place. The translation is broken, it's riddled with typos, and the dialogue bubbles are broken up mid-sentence, which might not seem so bad given how awful the writing is, but it breaks that horror up even more. Gandhi's story is told in pretty typical manga form, though perhaps muted somewhat from the usual flamboyance found in those style of novel. Strang This was awful. It shocks me that something like this could get through the editing process and whatever quality control that Penguin has in place. The translation is broken, it's riddled with typos, and the dialogue bubbles are broken up mid-sentence, which might not seem so bad given how awful the writing is, but it breaks that horror up even more. Gandhi's story is told in pretty typical manga form, though perhaps muted somewhat from the usual flamboyance found in those style of novel. Strangely, while calling it a manga, the publishers failed to give it the traditional manga right to left reading style, thus furthering their ineptitude at releasing this book. The only saving grace of the entire thing is that it does relate some information about Gandhi and what he did. For younger readers, it might be something to read. For anyone with any knowledge of literature or self-respect, please pass on by and read a real biography and do the man some justice. This book does not.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Alison

    I'm shocked that this book was published in its current form. It is RIDDLED with typos (missing punctuation, dropped letters, symbols inserted where letters should be), and the translation is so poor that some sentences literally make no sense. On top of that, the storytelling is poorly executed -- it leaps from place to place with zero explanation -- and the art is often difficult to follow. It's hard to figure out whether the author intended this to be read by adults or children, as it meander I'm shocked that this book was published in its current form. It is RIDDLED with typos (missing punctuation, dropped letters, symbols inserted where letters should be), and the translation is so poor that some sentences literally make no sense. On top of that, the storytelling is poorly executed -- it leaps from place to place with zero explanation -- and the art is often difficult to follow. It's hard to figure out whether the author intended this to be read by adults or children, as it meanders between complicated ideas and insipid dialogue. UGH! The only reason I'm giving it TWO stars is because it does contain a great deal of information about Gandhi's work. I'm just sorry it doesn't deliver that information with greater success. I'm especially sorry that NO ONE (!) bothered to proofread the book before it went to print!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Pooja Banga

    The life of a true twentieth-century hero told in a vibrant graphic novel format. Through his quietly powerful leadership and influential use of nonviolent resistance in India's struggle against the British Raj, Mahatma Gandhi became one of the most revered figures of the modern era. While history has recorded Gandhi's words and deeds, the man himself has been eclipsed by maxims of virtuosity that seem to have little resonance in our everyday lives. In Gandhi, the third volume in our exciting ne The life of a true twentieth-century hero told in a vibrant graphic novel format. Through his quietly powerful leadership and influential use of nonviolent resistance in India's struggle against the British Raj, Mahatma Gandhi became one of the most revered figures of the modern era. While history has recorded Gandhi's words and deeds, the man himself has been eclipsed by maxims of virtuosity that seem to have little resonance in our everyday lives. In Gandhi, the third volume in our exciting new manga biography series, created in conjunction with Emotional Content, Kazuki Ebine combines a gripping narrative with stunning illustrations to share Gandhi's inspiring and deeply human story with a whole new generation of readers.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Reading_ Tam_ Ishly

    I totally loved this one. The illustration is powerful, hard-hitting and simply amazing. The book has been constructed in a very smart manner regarding the important milestones/history regarding the life of Mahatma Gandhi. However, I cannot help feeling the lack of something more while reading this one.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Julie (Manga Maniac Cafe)

    This was disappointing. Tons of typos and stilted, awkward dialog made for a jarring, painful read. The pacing was off too. Not one of the best reads of the year by a long shot.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Lauren

    I appreciated this biography as it is both simplistic and beautiful in its form. The artwork at times reminded me a little bit of Craig Thompson, and I found myself thinking of the parallels in both Habibi and Satrapi's Persepolis as I read. It's a quick read (under an hour), and eloquently but realistically highlights the struggles Gandhi and his people endured in the name of peace. My knowledge of him was limited to what I knew from school and some articles I've read, so this was an enlightenin I appreciated this biography as it is both simplistic and beautiful in its form. The artwork at times reminded me a little bit of Craig Thompson, and I found myself thinking of the parallels in both Habibi and Satrapi's Persepolis as I read. It's a quick read (under an hour), and eloquently but realistically highlights the struggles Gandhi and his people endured in the name of peace. My knowledge of him was limited to what I knew from school and some articles I've read, so this was an enlightening piece. What strikes me most, particularly as I think about our current world events, is how courageous and devoted to truth and justice he was, in the midst of oppression and violence. The man lived his life in the spirit of civil disobedience...but not to win power and glory; rather, to engage in the spirit of truth and peace within himself and others. Extremely relevant to today--and all time. He is an important reminder to all of us that peace can be attainable, if we just take time to pay attention and listen to each other. The illustrations are quite powerful at certain points, particularly the close-ups of Gandhi's face as he grapples with these truths he so greatly seeks. I enjoyed following the progression of his life through visual representations--it made him much more real, more human. It's a compelling, poignant, and important read...and one that should be revisited as we seek to understand the world in which we live.

  7. 4 out of 5

    James Payne

    Truly bad: typos galore, on-the-nose narration and dialogue throughout, bad translation, topped off by unexplained and unwarranted narrative jumps. Making a mental note to not read comics published by Penguin after this and that "War is Boring" mental trauma I experienced last year. Nice cover though, so Penguin can still do that.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Maughn Gregory

    The chief merit of this manga (Japanese comics) rendition of Gandhi's life is that it provides a broad overview of major events and themes, in chronological order - which his own writings do not. I join the artist's hope that it will introduce Gandhi to readers who might otherwise not know who he was and what he did. But for anyone really interested, there is no substitute for reading Gandhi himself.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Harumichi Mizuki

    Just like Mother Theresa biographic novel, this one touches and breaks my heart as well. The world really needs more people like them, whose love is limitless and boundless... However, I was a bit dissapointed that some important scenes of Gandhi's early life whle he was studying in Enngland was depicted here. It was the scene when he beat an arrogant professor with his witty and wise replies. And who shot Gandhi to his death???

  10. 5 out of 5

    Mia

    learned a lot about Gandhi that I never knew before, but the story was a little confusing at parts and it was difficult to differentiate between all the people after awhile. also the grammatical errors bothered me, but I understand that the artist's first language is not English.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Michele C

    This was so great! If you love Gandi I would highly recommend it..even if you don't i recommend it since it is a really quick read and is very interesting!

  12. 4 out of 5

    dejah_thoris

    Great adaptation of Gandhi's life. I never realized how little I knew about him and his work until I read this graphic novel. Now I feel much more informed about his life before his elder years. Great idea for a series. The only downside to this biography was a few typos, which I thought was strange because they're within illustrations.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Dee Robb

    Very disjointed and hard to follow.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Jacob

    It's an ambitious task to summarize the life of one of the modern world's greatest humans into one 200-page graphic novel. Ebine does this fairly well, though his attempt falls somewhat flat, if for the only reason that it flies through Gandhi's life at an overly rapid pace. Part of the reason may be the format: the smallish size pages don't give the creator much space to work with for such a monumental biography. The drawings are fine, and I enjoy reading manga as much as the next person (along It's an ambitious task to summarize the life of one of the modern world's greatest humans into one 200-page graphic novel. Ebine does this fairly well, though his attempt falls somewhat flat, if for the only reason that it flies through Gandhi's life at an overly rapid pace. Part of the reason may be the format: the smallish size pages don't give the creator much space to work with for such a monumental biography. The drawings are fine, and I enjoy reading manga as much as the next person (along with the characteristic bead of sweat sliding down the face or forehead of a vexed character). And what Ebine does include is executed very well. But again, it just goes by so fast, it's hard to digest the magnitude of these events in the Mahatma's life. Ebine also seems to have been heavily influenced by the 1982 film "Gandhi," starring Ben Kingsley, which is one of my all-time favorites. This is apparent in several of his scenes, where the same shots seem to have been repeated. (For instance, see the scene where Gandhi visits the site of the massacre of the peacefully protesting Indians; the shot from below where we see Gandhi looking at the blood and corpses is from the exact same angle in the movie). The events chosen for the book too echo the movie quite a bit, not always as exactly, but if you've seen the movie, it's easy to see where Ebine was influenced by it. (Ebine acknowledges the film as one of his sources in his bibliography at the end of the book, so I'm certain he's familiar with it). It's great to see a manga adaptation of the life of Gandhi, but I was hoping for a little more, though again, it's not necessarily the fault of the creator! P.S. Some of the English translation in the book is marred. You'd think someone from Penguin would've picked up on that!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Beckiezra

    The art was meh compared to a lot of manga I read, but it’s a biography which has to impact the style compared to fiction. It made me tear up at times, but I can’t really rate it higher. My main issue with it was some translation issues. In scanlations I can forgive some grammar or spelling issues, but in a published book I expect a little better editing. I wasn’t very familiar with Gandhi’s life despite how well known his name is and his influence on American civil rights activists like Martin The art was meh compared to a lot of manga I read, but it’s a biography which has to impact the style compared to fiction. It made me tear up at times, but I can’t really rate it higher. My main issue with it was some translation issues. In scanlations I can forgive some grammar or spelling issues, but in a published book I expect a little better editing. I wasn’t very familiar with Gandhi’s life despite how well known his name is and his influence on American civil rights activists like Martin Luther King, Jr. I didn’t realize his name wasn’t actually Mahatma, that he’d studied in England, lived in South Africa, or even anything about his wife and family (not that this was super informative about his family. I could have used a character guide because I think I was missing the identity of some people). I thought this book was interesting and pretty informative, though I also feel like I can’t quite trust all the information and should look to another source to confirm things. The story did jump around a bit, I assume to focus on important historical events, but things weren’t usually explained as much as an uninformed reader could use. Overall it felt a little light on details. I could write a paragraph or three about Gandhi after reading this book, but not a paper. Manga series are often great for learning about different topics (I learn so much about random sports...), but this one was more of a sketch than a detailed biography. I think it’s probably a good introduction for people who might not be interested in reading a biography to get to know more about an important historic figure.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Sj

    I like the reason that Ebine created the book. I like the book's style. I like the book. I knew a lot about Gandhi prior to reading this book. I learned so much more. I definitely recommend this book. It is fast paced. It is a quick read. It is interesting. It is definitely worth the read.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Delaney

    This was an interesting way to read about Gandhi's life though not a great book overall. It's a graphic novel and goes very quickly through his entire life. I definitely learned some things, though it's more like a teaser for a more complete biography or autobiography. I wasn't a huge fan of this book because it jumped forward in time really abruptly. It could've used proper chapter breaks and a bit more narrative. It could be an interesting way to learn about Gandhi and the independence of Indi This was an interesting way to read about Gandhi's life though not a great book overall. It's a graphic novel and goes very quickly through his entire life. I definitely learned some things, though it's more like a teaser for a more complete biography or autobiography. I wasn't a huge fan of this book because it jumped forward in time really abruptly. It could've used proper chapter breaks and a bit more narrative. It could be an interesting way to learn about Gandhi and the independence of India, particularly for anyone who favours graphic novels.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Christian Phillips

    The book was mediocre at best. There was no story since it was a biography, so no problem there. Although, the way the dialogue was written would make a child question what they were reading. There were also a few misspelled words, which is understandable since its the authors second language, but I think it was the editors second language as well. Finally the art was okay considering the style didn't really match the book in my opinion, but once again I understand where the author is coming fro The book was mediocre at best. There was no story since it was a biography, so no problem there. Although, the way the dialogue was written would make a child question what they were reading. There were also a few misspelled words, which is understandable since its the authors second language, but I think it was the editors second language as well. Finally the art was okay considering the style didn't really match the book in my opinion, but once again I understand where the author is coming from.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Ryne

    Moving, emotional illustrations. The ending almost had me in tears (but I HELD IT TOGETHER because I was in a space with literally 200-300 other people!) It's too bad the translation is quite bad in many places. Weird grammar, distracting spelling errors... if I didn't already know the story of Gandhi, I don't know if I would have completely understood everything that was happening. I loved reading this, though; I think it wasn't as clear or historically informative as "Gandhi: My Life is My Mes Moving, emotional illustrations. The ending almost had me in tears (but I HELD IT TOGETHER because I was in a space with literally 200-300 other people!) It's too bad the translation is quite bad in many places. Weird grammar, distracting spelling errors... if I didn't already know the story of Gandhi, I don't know if I would have completely understood everything that was happening. I loved reading this, though; I think it wasn't as clear or historically informative as "Gandhi: My Life is My Message" but it certainly had an emotional impact on me!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Ana

    It's not good. The drawings are fine and the book looks good. But the text is very odd, the progression is way off. The transitions make very little sense and I don't feel like I've learned much about Gandhi. It's a shame, because the concept itself, of translating these awesome people biographies into manga, is really great, but it's executed very poorly.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Mayumi Sakamoto

    Though this read was quick, it certainly wasn't light. It felt like a good gloss over Ghandi's biggest historical events. The Manga style really helps paint a picture. That being said, the picture that is being painted touches only surface level biography. (Aka if you really want to know Ghandi (the good, the bad, and the ugly): look elsewhere.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Wilde Sky

    A graphic account of the life and times of a man who lead the struggle against British rule in India. I found some parts of this book interesting and I learnt some new facts about the man, but the graphics and narrative were a bit patchy - for facts / details about the man you'd probably be better off checking the internet. Overall rating 2.5

  23. 4 out of 5

    Susapien

    Kazuki Ebine provides a brief overview of Gandhi's life with a lot of brevity. However, the book is not able to explain Gandhi in a clear way, as he is not someone who can be condensed in such a short book. although it is like an overview, It gives you further interest to know a lot more about Gandhi's life. The book can be used as a quick read before reading My experiments with truth.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Deodand

    I was hoping the drawings would be as good as the cover, but some of them seemed a little hastily-executed for the English version of this manga. It's still a good, quick read that hits the highlights of Gandhi' biography.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Claire

    A basic-but-bland introduction that suffers from shoddy proofreading. Illustrations are decent. Truth be told, I would urge any child or young teenager who is interested in the life of Ghandi to skip the graphic novel and watch the 1982 film with Ben Kingsley.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Ghadah;

    A short manga showcasing the major events in Gandhi's life, sadly not detailed enough for my liking. The drawing however is fantastic. This could be a good introduction to Gandhi's life for someone who is not familiar with him. Great gift for young readers.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Sze

    Typos abound but the story was riveting and well told I could not stop reading history about Mohandas Gandhi. This is such a wonderfully illustrated book and tells the life and death story of Gandhi. Kudos to the creator of this manga!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Thais Morimoto (tatakizi)

    I loved this manga!! It was really nice to get to know a little bit more about Gandhi and his work. The illustrations are great and the Portuguese edition didn't had any typos (as a lot of people mentioned in their reviews about the Penguin's edition).

  29. 5 out of 5

    M a n o s h i

    This was a good biography of the one and only Gandhi! there were some spelling errors and such and the story was a bit choppy and not smooth sailing at all which is why it is a 4 star. i did really enjoy the story but I wish it didn't jump from time to time.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Candice M (tinylibrarian)

    Reviewed for Booklist Reviewed for Booklist

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