Sunday 6 November 2011

The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen Book Challenge 2012

Welcome to the first ever book challenge hosted by Booking In Heels!

Post your entries in the linky here.

This is a challenge I've not seen anywhere else and was something I was planning to do on my own next year anyway, so I figured the more the merrier!

For those who don't know, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen was a film released in 2003 based on a graphic novel by Alan Moore (of Watchmen fame). The movie features various classic book characters who all form a League to stop various classic villians from taking over the world. 

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to read the original book featuring each of the main characters and post a review of each between 1st January 2012 and the 31st December.

Every single one of these books is out of copyright (which is how they could be used in the first place) and so are free for download on most e-book readers. 

Even if you don't complete the challenge, it's great fun watching the film and knowing a little more about the characters!

The main characters and their books are:

Allan Quatermain from King Solomon's Mines by H. Rider Haggard

Allan Quatermain actually features in a number of books by this author, but King Solomon's Mines is the first. It tells of a search of an unexplored region of Africa by a group of adventurers led by Allan Quatermain for the missing brother of one of the party. 

Quite obviously, he's played by Sean Connery in the film.

Mina Harker from Dracula by Bram Stoker

  Mrs. Harker is the only woman in the League. As the widow of Jonathon Harker, she is left with vampiric abilities that come in useful when dealing with nefarious plots to take over the world.

She's played by Peta Wilson.

Captain Nemo from 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea by Jules Verne

Nemo is the enigmatic Captain of the Nautilus, the technologically advanced submarine that provides transport for the League.

I read this book earlier this year (looks like I'll be rereading it next year...) and loved it.

Tom Sawyer from The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain

Sawyer is my least favourite member of the League and the last member to join. As a young American go-getter, is adopted as a kind of protege by Quatermain.

He's played by Shane West, I believe.

Dorian Gray from The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

Excuse me while I run off to drool... If I could nuzzle and lick this man, trust me I would. Anyway, this is Dorian Gray and his Picture.

In the film, Mr. Gray is played by Stuart Townsend and is a snide, suave, sophisticated cad who is only roped into the League to get closer to Mina.

Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde from The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson

This is probably the most famous book used in The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, but it's an excellent one. Dr. Jekyll (right) is an innocuous, moral Doctor until he takes a formula of his own invention which transforms him into the violent, brutal Mr. Hyde (right).

His/their services are offered to the League in return for a pardon for their crimes committed in London.

Played by Jason Flemyng in the film. 

Rodney Skinner from The Invisible Man by H.G. Wells (kind of)

 Skinner is the only member of the League not to be taken directly from the pages of a book. The Invisible Man is still copyrighted so the characters from that book couldn't be used directly. Instead, Skinner claims to have stolen the Invisibility Formula from the character in the book, which makes it all nice and legal.

The Phantom from The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux

And now we're onto the villains. Yay villains!

I love how they've done the Phantom in the film - it's a step away from the traditional white mask and black cape combo. It just works so well.

James Moriarty from The Final Problem by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

The ultimate baddie, the mastermind behind it all, the 'Napoleon of Crime!'

No photo for this one, but if you've seen the film, you'll know who I mean.

Right then. That's nine books to read in twelve months.

To sign up, just fill in the linky below and link back to this page on your blog. You can join in at any time, but reviews must be posted by the last day of 2012 to qualify for the challenge. On the day before the challenge begins, I'll post a seperate linky for each character so you can easily add your review for the relevant one.

You do not need a blog to join. Reviews on Amazon/GoodReads/whatever are just fine and dandy.

Obviously rereads are more than okay, as I've read a few of these before. 


  1. Oh my look at that list! If I do this I may have to start with the comics and the film as I've experienced neither. I *have* read Dracula but there is a bunch on there I've been meaning to read, think I have Dorian Grey on my shelf in the green Penguin edition. Free ebooks though, yes. Great idea! I have a challenge of my own to set up. I drafted it yesterday actually, should get it up soon and I reckon you'll be interested in that one. :) Yay!

  2. PS. Won't be putting the post up just yet, I'll save that for December (NUDGE ME) but I like this one! Might not get through them all but I'll do my best. <3

  3. @Hannah - OH THANK GOD. I was hoping you'd sign up. I've had challenge posts pop up on my reader constantly and I was worried I'd left it too late. These bloggery people are way too organised :p

    The film's brilliant. I have the graphic novel to read but I haven't yet.

  4. I just saw this on Twitter and even though I'm trying to cut down on my challenges for next year, I had to join this one. I love this movie and there's several books on the list that I haven't read yet.

    Great idea for a challenge!

  5. What a great challenge! I've already read a few of these books but have been wanting to read most of the others, anyway!

  6. This is such a great challenge! I can't wait to get started!

  7. This is one way to kick-start my reading some of the classics! Thanks!

  8. I love the comic, hated the movie, but there are so many books involved that I want to read that I have to take part in this challenge! What a clever way to put one together!

    I will hopefully put up the information for Working for the Mandroid's 2012 Science Fiction challenge tonight, so if you're interested in that genre, check back later.

    I'm so excited by all these challenges!!

    Working for the Mandroid

  9. OMG I LOVE YOU RIGHT NOW. I mean...I promised myself I wouldn't do another challenge next year...BUT this is too awesome of an idea to pass up~ Definitely joining this!

  10. This looks like a lot of fun! Even though I've never seen the movie or read the graphic novel. Maybe I should put the novel on the challenge list...

  11. I found you on "A Novel Challenge," and I'm so glad I did, because I've been looking for exactly this challenge. I've never really done a lot of gothic/horror reading, and I'd like to push my comfort zones a little bit with these classics. I'll be back to link my post tomorrow. A few by-the-ways:
    -Love the Tonks hair
    -You can have books, games, heels, and anything else you want, and don't let anyone tell you different.
    -My mother had lupus. Support and hugs from "across the pond" always ready, should they be needed.
    The Beauty of Eclecticism

  12. How can it even be time for 2012 challenges?! This is just crazy!

    Great idea, though! I love the film and every time I watch it I do that thing where I try and work out which characters and parts of the film come from. Mr Boyfriend hates it no end! Now I'll just annoy him by telling him where they come from, instead of just wondering! He'll love you :)

    Also, I think I'm most looking forward to Phantom of the Opera. Ooh or maybe The Final Problem! Oh dear, I'm already too excited...

    (Oh, and of course I signed up - how could I not?! :-p)

  13. Great challenge, I have a similar going on here:

  14. @Demijel - Not as much as I love you for signing up, trust me!

    @JNCL - Haha, I've never heard it called Tonks hair before! And don't worry - I'm always exactly who I want to be.

    @LAB - He won't love me at all, I guarantee it. See my comment on your post :p I'm looking forward to the Phantom of the Opera too. I've never even touched it before. Not sure about Tom Sawyer though...

  15. Wow, great challenge! I'll probably sign-up. I've read only 2 of these books years ago & although I've been meaning to re-read them & read the others for years, still haven't gotten around to them, so this will be perfect :)

  16. What a great idea. I was going to read most of these this year, anyway! Thanks!

  17. All signed up! I had the movie on video ages ago so it's about time I watched it again. I'm a sucker for Dorian Gray - he's one of my fave characters ever - but adding Stuart Townsend to the narcissistic mix was just too good to miss. ;)

    Some of the books were already on my 2012 maybe-to-read list too, so it'll be a good incentive to stop putting them off and get reading! Not sure I'm going to like 'Tom Sawyer' much but I have high hopes for the rest...

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  19. Just left my link, which is under the wrong name (peacock), but goes to the correct post about the challenge. argh....

    Wonderful challenge!!!! Thank you!

  20. Great challenge! Cant wait to get started. Thanks for hosting!!

  21. I am so excited for this challenge! Thanks for doing it! :)

  22. I've never done a challenge before, but this one sound great fun and seems doable. I finally want to get to those classics, which are all on my shelves and of which I've only read one.

    Hopefully it's no problem that my blog is in Dutch. I also have an English thread on librarything where I will publish reviews in English.

  23. The linky seems to have vanished?? Anyway I will be joining in!

  24. Ok, I just wrote mu sign up post, but the link doesn't work, so here's my link:
    Thanks for hosting!

  25. I'm joining this challenge as well. My post is here:

  26. My review of Dracula is here:

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  28. I finally finished my first book! I'm just putting the finishing touches to my review of THE INVISIBLE MAN, hooray! One down, eight to go... :)

  29. Wow, interesting challenge. I'm going to have really think about this one because most of these books are on my Classics Club challenge anyway, and I'd planned on reading most this year. Hmmmm

  30. Hi there!
    I completed the challenge, you can find my post here:

    Thank you for hosted it! :)


  31. I didn't quite complete the challenge. I have two review (sort of) posts that add up to 7 of the 9 books. Here they are, and I plan to read the others.


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