George MacDonald has been my favorite author since I was eleven years old, and he’s been in my reading life almost as long as C. S. Lewis has. Unfortunately, a lot of his works are hard to find, and when I have found them they often have typos or errors. I was delighted when The Rabbit Room began to release some of his short stories with beautiful illustrations and binding.
When I found out that they were soon going to release MacDonald’s short story The Golden Key, I was hesitant when I discovered it was going to be a graphic novel interpretation. I was worried it wouldn’t capture MacDonald’s spirit for the story, and being a huge MacDonald fan, I was hard to please.
My parents surprised me with a copy of The Golden Key a few months after it was released, and I read it in a day. In no way was I disappointed. I think that MacDonald’s spirit, which is so deep and layered, was captured perfectly by Hesselman’s illustrations, and I’m confident that MacDonald would have loved it. The Golden Key has taken on new meaning every time I’ve read it, and seeing it in a graphic novel interpretation has made it even more special to me.
Most importantly, I think this graphic novel is a great way to introduce children to a version of MacDonald that they will love. I had a younger sibling who loves graphic novels but who I had never convinced to read MacDonald. He read The Golden Key and soon after began reading other works of MacDonald, even though they weren’t in graphic novel form.
Hesselman has mentioned potentially creating more graphic novels of MacDonald’s short stories, and I’m sincerely hoping he will. He’s brought The Golden Key alive in a way it never has before, and I’d love to see what he’ll do with some of MacDonald’s other tales.