Herakles Book 1

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 31 Jul 2018

Member Reviews

I am a huge fan of all things related to the Classics, so I knew that I had to read this as soon as I saw it. I was very impressed with how unique and enjoyable this graphic novel was to read. I found the illustrations interesting and the depiction of Herakles to be one that I don't often see--a fact that I actually really liked. The premise of this story is familiar, but there were two main things that set it apart and led me to giving it four stars: 1) the art style, which is so engaging and unique, and 2) the alternate depiction of Herakles as not exactly your typical 'hero.' Overall, I was intrigued by this retelling of one of Herakles' stories. It is not the best I've seen, but it is certainly worth a read.
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3.5 Stars

I enjoyed this story that told the labours of Heracles.
I’m pretty interested in greek mythology but don’t know as much about it as I wish so I was pretty happy to read this.
But they were flaws. I didn’t really like the art and I didn’t feel anything for any of the characters.
Still, I’m planning to read the next books in this series.
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Herakles, Vol. 1 by Edouard Cour is a free NetGalley e-comicbook that I read in late July.

Herakles is put down by the gods for not being, well, godly enough, so he finds conflict and completes his labors. There is a lumpy, moundish figure rendering against scribbly, honeyed, sunset spectrum scenery and small, hard-to-read script. The snow-flecked polar settings were my personal favorite and, at its best, it was a lot like Samurai Jack with the palette of 300.
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This book grew on me.  At first I didn’t care for it, but by the end I was entertained and interested to see who the story plays out.  Herakles, is the Greek equivalent of Hercules so the story is very familiar.  He is sent on his trials and tasked to impossible quests.  This Herakles is more a Game of Thrones type character than a Disney character.  He is brash, gruff, and very rough.  We travel with him to complete four or five labors, and they are not pretty.  They are violent, but not bloody as drawn in this book.  I now want to see how this author/artist bring this story to completion.  But at the same time, I don’t find it so unique and great that I would buy it for my library.
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An interesting take on Herakles and his trials, but only if you know something about the mythology.

The comics starts with Herakles already working to achieve his first of the 12 labors given to him to pay for the crimes he committed against his wife and children, but none of what I just wrote is provided, as the reader is unaware as to why this brusque of a brute is even trying to accomplish anything.

Edouard Cour is taking a gamble here but going straight into the labors of Herakles with very little backstory although as one progresses through the story, there are hints along the way that may provide some character backstory which I can only hope will be further explained in the next volume as this one only covered 8 labors.

The art style was interesting and reminded of me of older drawings and illustrations of that era while the color scheme made me think of the limited color palette in Greek pottery - not sure if this was intentional but it lent itself nicely to the story.

If you know a little about the myth, that will help you along but if you don't, you might find yourself with more questions than not.
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'Herakles Book 1' with story and art by Edouard Cour gives us a different look at the famous Greek hero.

When we first meet Herakles, he is beginning his tasks.  The first one is slaying the lion that lives in the hills of Nemea.  He starts the task by getting stung by a scorpion.  This is a Herakles who seems to be not so bright sometimes.  Herakles is a big lumbering brute of a man who seems to mostly be saying "Fine. Whatever."  He lumbers along through his tasks.  Sometimes being given hints, mostly just by brute force.

He is more complex than this, of course.  He is racked by guilt over the ghosts of his childhood, like Linos, son of Calliope, who was his music teacher, who hangs out and makes sarcastic comments at him.

I liked this version of the myth.  The art is chunky and crude, just like the character it portrays.  This volume isn't all of the tasks, so there are further adventures to look forward to.

I received a review copy of this graphic novel from Lion Forge, Diamond Book Distributors, and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you for allowing me to review this graphic novel.
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This was a strange way to tell the tale of Heracles. Firstly, we are thrown into his labors without any information about his background, why he is doing them, or anything along those lines.

The actual wording itself was I think poorly done. Every time anybody talked it was almost modern-sounding. And when they talk for the first time they don’t introduce themselves, so we are introduced to a bunch of new people with no explanation. We are also dropped into some of Heracles’ labors very randomly as well. The novel actually starts in the middle of him trying to obtain the fur of the Nemean Lion. Parts of this tale were unnecessarily gratuitous, for example when Heracles is in the lake going after the Lion, he runs after him completely naked and there’s a shot of his front completely bare. Like… why?

I think the one thing I liked about this novel is the art style. Everyone had long faces and long lines and everything was angular. It seemed like they were trying to evoke the style of Ancient Greek reliefs on pottery, etc and it’s very unique.

Overall I was let down by this novel, but I think it’s my own fault and I should have gone into it with lower expectations.
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When you are not familiar with the story or trying to unearth your schooldays in your brain like I had to do a lot of this graphic novel will be lost to you. The story is hardly explained and the who is who is at the end..
The drawings are in just a few colours and very basic. One I really liked but the rest not so much. Reading other reviewers I realised it was supposed to be in the style of Greek pottery. I wished I had known that when I was reading it.
Like I said: You best have a basic knowledge of Greek mythology so this graphic novel will do well in a school where they teach Greek and Latin and I can imagine my friends who studied ancient history in university liking it as well. But not for the general public and certainly not for people under 12.
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Herakles follows Hercules as he completes his labours. This graphic novel retells a well known ancient story, but this time in a different light. Rather than a simple heroic figure, Hercules is depicted to be less than perfect and battling his own inner demons. It explored the sorrows he faces that can often be looked over in the original legend.

With a play of humour and a look into the thoughts of the main character, it asks readers the question, is creating so much grief and sadness worth being the hero?

This is a great retelling of Hercules that appeals to adolescent readers.
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This darker (and more accurate to the lore) take on the early trials of Hercules is much appreciated. I particularly liked the artwork, which reflected without replicating the style often found on Greek pottery. The text is limited but the gore level and nudity is high, so this book will likely find more adult readers that under 18s.
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A pleasant take on the Herakles story. I only have a passing familiarity with the original story, I spent a lot more time with Odysseus in my youth, and so I don't know how much of what surprised me here is a new take, or just details I didn't know before. 
He is certainly not a pleasant character, and is (literally) haunted by his many demons.
The artwork is suitably dark (sometimes too dark) and fast paced.
A recommended diversion.
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The illustrations were really good, but I wasn't a fan of the book itself. I do enjoy Greek Mythology, but there was just something I didn't like about this one. It would make a good addition to a high school library, for Greek Mythology fans. I say high school because of the nude illustrations, only because I have worked with middle schoolers and know how they would react, which means that other teachers and parents would get annoyed with it and take it out on the librarian. (Speaking from experience) I'm not saying that it isn't a good book, just was not for me or my students.
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*This book was provided to me by Net Galley in exchange for an honest review*

This is a retelling of the twelve labors of Heracles in graphic novel form. There is a unique take on Heracles in this story, where the author depicts Heracles as being tormented by the ghosts of the many people he has killed or whose death were somehow caused by him. It is also stated in the book's summary that Heracles is depicted as being a jerk, as opposed to being depicted as a hero.

My favorite thing about this book was the art. It has a very dark, meets ancient Greek pottery kind of vibe. I enjoyed the idea that Heracles is constantly haunted by dark thoughts and the ghosts of his victims. This would be a fun read if you are already familiar with the myths and stories of Heracles. If you pick this up with the hopes of learning about the twelves labors of Heracles, you will be disappointed. This book does a poor job actually explaining what is happening or why Heracles is performing these labors. In order for you to get the best reading experience you would have to know about Heracles and his labors beforehand. 

One big issue I had with this is that the summary is advertising this as a retelling of Heracles where the characterization of him as a hero is challenged. I found that the author did not depict Heracles any differently than I have read before. He was not any more of a jerk, or any more crude than in other depictions of him that I have previously read. Another issue that I had was the fact that the author never explains who the woman and three children that Heracles keeps seeing as ghosts are. I assumed that it was his wife and children who he killed in a rage, that Hera caused. Maybe this is something that will be explained in the next volume, but it would be a confusing twist for people who are unfamiliar with the stories of Heracles and it would be an anticlimactic twist for people who already know what happened to Heracles' wife and children.

Overall, this is just a less detailed explanation of the twelve labors of Heracles. If you enjoy graphic novels and are obsessed with Greek mythology, this may be perfect for you. I find that this a poor depiction of the myths, with very little explanation and no backstory. The art is very unique and dark and lends itself to this guilt-ridden depiction of Heracles, but it isn't particularly well-written.
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This is a unique retelling of the life of Hercules, one of the greatest figures of ancient Greek mythology. Along with the spirit of his teacher, Linos, we follow Hercules on his path to completing the tasks set to him by King Eurystheus. 

The artwork is very engaging, and the whole depiction of Hercules as a lot grimmer than what Greek mythology tells is very interesting. There is also a lot of dark humor involved, making this graphic novel all the more enjoyable. A very good read overall.
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What made me pick up this book was the fact that it is all about Greek mythology. I've always loved the stories of the various gods and divine heroes and Herakles was no exception. His twelve labors made a great set of adventures. I like to read different perspectives on the greek myths and the premise of this graphic novel promised me a jerk. So I had high hopes when picking this one up.

The first thing I noticed was that Herakles isn't only a jerk (and a big one at that) but also physically not your typical Greek hero. He's a big chubby guy who looks like he eats and drinks a lot and shouldn't really be able to move around a lot. This is definitely a different approach to most Herakles/Hercules stories, but as it turns out not one I particularly enjoy.
Then there's the artwork. I like it a lot more clear and clean. The art in this graphic novel is harsh, dark and not very detailed. For me it was sometimes almost impossible to be able to see what was going on in a panel which for me, meant that I just skipped it.
The story was alright. The twelve labors make for enough action to keep you interested. However, to kind of understand what happens you do need the have a bit of basic knowledge about the topic, because most of the time the story rushes through the best parts. I did like the fact that Herakles was troubled and was haunted by the ghosts from his past. This added a fun element, but wasn't enough for me to truly enjoy this novel.
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A parody telling of Hercules, here we see Herakles going on quests. He is a man tied to the ghosts of his past and as a result he is depressed. 
. The reason i gave it three stars was because of the art, not particularly my favorite because i could not see some of the panels( they were black out) and so i was left to my imagination. The print was not legible enough , this might put people off.

 The story is interesting if you have read the tale of Hercules,you will enjoy this
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Edouard Cours' take on Herakles is more than worth it. Notably different than the Hercules you are used to seeing on the Disney Channel, Herakles is meant for the adult reader as it follows the mythos. With nudity and the humor to match, this is probably not something you would want you kids to get a hold of, but oh boy should YOU! Just the artwork alone is incredible. the colors were dark and gritty in a good way, helping set the tone for the comic and giving you a sense of how Herakles sees his world.

The story is done well, taking the legend that is Herakles and adding to it. The language used is modern,which makes this an easier read, though you can go pages at a time here and not see a single word and still have the story progress.
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Unable to read this book effectively as in most pages the language bubbles were empty. I was not particularly ensnared with the art. It was a style I did not find particularly appealing and often had difficulty trying to make out exactly what was going on in the scenes. I’m sure the script would have helped but reallly good art often doesn’t need a script to convey the whole story. Alas, that was not the case here.  

This review was not shared online due to the incompleteness of the ARC. I thought it would not be fair.
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Dark but simple illustrations, good gritty take of the labours of hercules. I read it on my phone which was a bit difficult to see some of the details
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Honestly I was not blown away by this book. I was able to follow it mainly because I already knew the myths. I was a bit thrown by the language usage. I got where the author was going with it, trying to make the stories more accessible to younger, more modern readers. It just wasn't what I expected. The artwork was sometimes confusing, so dark that I couldn't really tell what was going on. Not completely sure that I would read the next book in the series.
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