Saturday 15 February 2020

Book Review: Pan's Labyrinth by Guillermo del Toro & Cornelia Funke (Fantasy)

Title: Pan's Labyrinth
Author: Guillermo del Toro & Cornelia Funke

Publication Date: 2019
Xmas Gift


Oscar winning writer-director Guillermo del Toro and New York Times bestselling author Cornelia Funke have come together to transform del Toro’s hit movie Pan’s Labyrinth into an epic and dark fantasy novel for readers of all ages, complete with haunting illustrations and enchanting short stories that flesh out the folklore of this fascinating world.

This spellbinding tale takes readers to a sinister, magical, and war-torn world filled with richly drawn characters like trickster fauns, murderous soldiers, child-eating monsters, courageous rebels, and a long-lost princess hoping to be reunited with her family.

The movie Pan's Labyrinth is one of my all-time faves, so I was excited to read a novelisation of the story. Overall, it worked okay. All the key moments are there, along with some background tales of the building of the labyrinth and the Faun's search for the princess. There were also some nice illustrations interspersed throughout the book. However, it felt like there was something missing. Maybe it's because I already knew the story so well, but there was no sense of the film's magic within the book. Something got lost in the adaptation; the story just didn't work quite as well. Not to say it's bad, just that it's not *as* good as the movie. Given the choice, I would watch rather than read with this one, but it's still a nice edition that is a pleasing collector's piece for fans of the film and/or Guillermo del Toro's works.


  1. I was actually going to ask if you'd seen the movie and how it compared to this, but you answered that question right off the bat, you mind-reader, you. xD It's really interesting when the movie ends up being better than a book. I'm actually curious about some of the history this might provide about the Labyrinth and such, but at the same time, the movie was just *so gorgeous*, and I'm not sure you could properly confer that in writing. It's truly a work of film-making artistry.

    1. Yes, exactly. The novelisation of The Shape of Water worked well, but this one and Crimson Peak were only average imo.