Maximum Ride Volume 1 Manga by James Patterson & NaRae Lee

maximumridemanga1patterson3Maximum Ride, Vol. 1 Manga (Maximum Ride: The Manga)

by James Patterson & NaRae Lee

  • VOYA: 5P4Q M
  • Lexile Level: GN
  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Yen Press (January 27, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0759529515
  • ISBN-13: 978-0759529519

What happens when a popular teen science fiction series goes manga? In the case of Maximum Ride by James Patterson, NaRae Lee’s adaptation and Korea-pop styling add an added sweetness to an already appealing story. Patterson’s story revolves around six children with avian genes who are on the fun from the evil laboratory that created them. Lee remains faithful to the series without being simply an illustrated version of book one. For the most part, the characters remain vibrant and distinctive and the action continues nonstop. Readers new to the series will be greeted with enough information to get into the story without feeling overwhelmed and longtime fans will be rewarded with a new way into the series. Lee’s illustrations are lush and gorgeous while remaining true to the grit of the original. The main character, Max, is well drawn as a tough, determined leader with an obligation to her flock. Her friends, Ella and Dr. Martinez, are appealing and largely believably. The other flock members, however, are not as fleshed out as readers may like. In this volume, Angel, Fang and Nudge each get a little bit of focus, but we learn the most about them from what Max says and not what they do or say themselves. Both Iggy and Gasman, however, are painted in broad strokes at best. Overall, however, Lee does an excellent job with the amount of space she is given and creates an interesting work that will draw in a new audience to this amazing story. Does this piece work as a replacement for the larger novel? Nah. But it is a lot of fun nonetheless.

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