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Manga Shakespeare: Othello

Words by Richard Appignanesi

Art by Ryuta Osada

Paperback, 208 pp, £9.99

"O beware, my Lord, of jealousy – it is the green-eyed monster…" Iago's treacherous warning sets in train Othello's terrible descent into a hell of suspicion. Deceived by Iago into blindly believing his virtuous wife Desdemona unfaithful, darkness shrouds Othello's noble soul. And, as in all great thrillers, murder walks by night... In this fantastical manga version of Shakespeare's famous tragedy, the action begins amidst the carnival atmosphere of a re-imagined and otherworldly Venice. While masks may hide some characters' true motives, Othello's terrifying emotions are dramatically revealed.

Othello is part of Manga Shakespeare, a series of graphic novel adaptations of William Shakespeare's plays. Drawing inspiration from trendsetting Japan and using Shakespeare's original texts, this series – adapted by Richard Appignanesi and illustrated by leading manga artists – brings to life the great Bard's words for students, Shakespeare enthusiasts and manga fans.

Ryuta Osada

Ryuta Osada was born in Tokyo. He moved to the UK in 2000, after graduating from Nihon University. He went on to study graphic design at the Surrey Institute of Art and Design and, after that, at Central St Martins College in London. In 2009, Osada returned to Japan, where he worked on several illustrated reference books for publisher Shinkigensha. He is also a historical advisor on Shinich Sakamoto's manga series Innocent.

Richard Appignanesi

Richard Appignanesi is a PhD graduate in classical art history. He was a founder and co-director of the Writers & Readers Publishing Cooperative, and later of Icon Books Ltd, where he served as originating editor of the internationally acclaimed illustrated Beginners and Introducing series, to which he contributed his own bestselling titles, Freud, Postmodernism, Existentialism and others. A former executive editor of the art journal Third Text, reviews editor of Futures and exhibition curator, Richard is the author of the fiction trilogy Italia Perversa, the novel Yukio Mishima’s Report to the Emperor and the Granta title What do Existentialists Believe? For SelfMadeHero, he adapted the texts for the Manga Shakespeare series, as well as The Wolf Man and Hysteria in the Graphic Freud series.


"This series does in book form what film director Baz Luhrmann did on screen – make Shakespeare cool and accessible to a younger generation… [the] artists use the dynamic flow of manga to give Shakespeare's plots an addictive page-turning energy."
— Independent on Sunday
"If I have my way, comics will play their part in the literacy debate. My son has no interest in English at school, but has devoured three Manga Shakespeare graphic novels, plus the graphic novel of Kafka's The Trial." 
— Ian Rankin