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From Hell

(From Hell #1-11)

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4.17  ·  Rating details ·  32,283 ratings  ·  1,692 reviews
"I shall tell you where we are. We're in the most extreme and utter region of the human mind. A dim, subconscious underworld. A radiant abyss where men meet themselves. Hell, Netley. We're in Hell."

Having proved himself peerless in the arena of reinterpreting superheroes, Alan Moore turned his ever-incisive eye to the squalid, enigmatic world of Jack the Ripper and the Wh
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Paperback, 576 pages
Published 2007 by Knockabout Comics (first published 1999)
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Christy You should be aware that when Gull is removing Mary Kelly's breasts with his surgical knife after having slit her throat, her nipples are clearly visi…moreYou should be aware that when Gull is removing Mary Kelly's breasts with his surgical knife after having slit her throat, her nipples are clearly visible. Jeez, what a question.(less)
J.R. Very much so. Its one of those rare books that I didn't really like but can say that the author did a good job.

It was really slow from time to time. …more
Very much so. Its one of those rare books that I didn't really like but can say that the author did a good job.

It was really slow from time to time. (less)

Community Reviews

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Average rating 4.17  · 
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 ·  32,283 ratings  ·  1,692 reviews


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Fabian
Dec 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
An outstanding achievement. I'm in deep awe of the many components that make up this complex, riveting work of ART. First off, the illustrations are opaque & shimmery, raw and delicate, fierce and even bittersweet. The Jack the Ripper story involves different angles, & they're all portrayed here in inspiring detail. Stories & sub-stories, like molecules and atoms, arrive at a fever pitch several times in the narrative, & it really is a roller-coaster of the macabre, of the surreal, and of authen ...more
Oriana
This was #17 for Jugs & Capes.

I hated every goddamn minute of it.

I hated the cramped, schizophrenic writing that made my eyes cross. I hated the stark, sketch-y drawing that were so vague you couldn't ever tell who was who. I hated the gore and the period-"appropriate" racism and classism. I hated all the characters—the flippety-gibbet women and the cold cruel calculating men and everyone in between. I hated the inexplicable worlds-within-worlds twistiness of the myriad occult subplots. I hated
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Bill Kerwin

Alan Moore’s graphic novel From Hell is an extraordinary creation, difficult to encapsulate for someone like me, who strives to epitomize the essence of a work in a relatively short review. As Walt Whitman once said of himself, From Hell is “large” (576 pages) and does “contain multitudes,” and—like any thing large and multitudinous—it is full of tantalizing contradictions.

On the surface, From Hell presents, in the form of an illustrated narrative, the historical events of the 1888-1891 Whitecha
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Hannah Garden
May 17, 2008 rated it really liked it
Uh-oh, I think I like comic books now . . .
Trish
Apr 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is the second graphic novel by Alan Moore that I've read. He is a very prolific writer, but sometimes he's a bit too over the top for my taste. It was OK in V for Vendetta though I must admit to liking the movie a bit better because it was more grounded. With From Hell, once again, I've seen the movie before having read the graphic novel and although the movie features Johnny Depp and a lot of opium, I liked that one better as well.

Why? Rather simple: the movie was a mystery with the watche
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Brad
A story doesn't have to be factual to be true, and I don't think I have read a truer story in any form than Alan Moore's From Hell.

At the heart of the tale is Jack the Ripper. It is the truest telling of Jack the Ripper that I've ever read. It matters not a whit whether Dr. William Gull is actually Jack the Ripper. Nor whether Queen Victoria set the ball rolling with her orders. Nor whether Abberline actually fell for one of the prostitutes. Nor whether the Freemasons had their hands all over th
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Bradley
I'm torn on this one. I mean, sure, it's Jack the Ripper and Alan Moore and it's supposed to be this grand masterpiece, but to me it just feels mostly like some kind of disjointed hodge-podge collection of personas that simultaneously lift up and denigrate both the East Side women and everyone else, nearly randomly, until much later in the comic when things finally tie together into a mystical extravaganza that is both surprising and feeling rather out of place.

What do I mean? Well, throw out th
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Carol
"This is the house that Jack built".......ends the first chapter.

FROM HELL by Alan Moore is a monster of a hard cover (comic) book depicting the gruesome Whitechapel murders committed by the notorious Jack The Ripper and investigated by Scotland Yard in the late 1800's.

While a work of fiction, this book includes a greatly expanded and detailed Appendix with factual notations as well as educated speculation (from the author) for each chapter and a period map of London giving the reader much food

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Belarius
Jan 27, 2008 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Die-Hard Alan Moore Fans
From Hell is a brick of a book by legendary author Alan Moore. It presents one theory (since discredited) about the Jack The Ripper killings, and in so doing presents us with the story from every conceivable angle. The result is an exhaustive (albeit fictional) account of a sweeping slice of Victorian landscape.

From Hell is dense, multi-layered, and overflowing with an obsessive connect-the-dots tone that fancifully associates the events to everything from Aleister Crowley's childhood to Hitler'
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J.G. Keely
Ripperology is a mess of theories and conspiracies, an impossible puzzle which obsessive writers turn into narratives that tell us more about the author than about crime or murder. Moore knows this as well as anyone, pointing out in his afterward that the whole thing has become a silly game, a masturbatory immediately recognizable to anyone familiar with discussions on the levels of Star Wars canon or Gandalf's particular racial background.

I read this not with a notion that by the end I'd come t
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David Schaafsma
I'd read The Watchmen, and found it to be genius; V for Vendetta I liked very much as well (a pretty powerful and angry political allegory, though much less complex), and have read others by The Greatest, Alan Moore. But this is one of my favorite works of his. It is massive, incredibly ambitious, an erudite work of scholarship and passion, and yet it also feels like one of the most personal of his works I have read thus far. And yet it all took place a century and more ago: The Jack the Ripper ...more
Devann
God this has to be about the most boring thing I've read this year. Well, I read maybe ...20% of it ...then I started skimming it ...then by about the 60% point I was literally just looking at the pictures because I cannot explain with words how MIND NUMBINGLY DULL THIS IS. I'm sure I'll get tons of shit for this, especially because Moore famously hates all adaptations of his work, but just go watch the movie lmao.

I just ...don't even understand the point of it because all that stuff you find o
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Ona
Jun 26, 2017 rated it did not like it
DNF - I had to stop torturing myself. The art work was white/black OK I don't have the problem with that, but when in some frames you can not even recognize characters or read text properly. It makes you confused an uninterested in the story.
Jason Pettus
Apr 22, 2008 rated it it was amazing
(Reprinted from the Chicago Center for Literature and Photography [cclapcenter.com:]. I am the original author of this essay, as well as the owner of CCLaP; it is not being reprinted here illegally.)

So in what I think is a first since opening CCLaP last year, I got a chance recently to not only read a book for the first time but also watch a movie based on it for the first time in the same week; in this case, it was the "Jack The Ripper" conspiracy tale From Hell, with the original 1999 graphic
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Sud666
Aug 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: comics, history, crime
Alan Moore's From Hell could rightfully be called a masterpiece. It is a large tome measuring in at 510 pages of story and 70 pages of annotated notes. It is the last part that truly imparts the tremendous amount of research Mr. Moore conducted on From Hell. Whether or not you will agree with his stated concept is the reader's choice, but do not let it prevent you from reading this wonderful work.

From Hell tells a story on a vast canvas. That canvas is the Victorian Era of London. This book is n
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Anthony
Jul 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: digital
I bought this digitally from comiXology back in 2013 when it was on sale. I can't remember how much I paid for it (probably around £3/£4). And then it sat on my iPad for over year, unread and taking up space. One day, I decided to give it a go.

I think one should approach this not as a comic, or even a graphic novel, but as a prose novel. It's a very dense read, and requires a lot of your time and attention. But I don't say this as a criticism. Once you get past the first 100 pages or so, it tur
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Bradley Timm
Feb 24, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I find this book to be criminally overlooked; whether its relevance to the god awful adaptation by the Hughes Bros. has anything to do with it or not.

Here is what I consider to be Alan Moore's personal best work. When I finished "From Hell" I had a profound, inescapable feeling that I just learned something very important about mankind and human nature on such a level that it was difficult to quantify. The work is at once clinical, unsympathetic and uncomfortable, yet these reactions are so int
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Rory Wilding
Apr 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Although he has been radical with his comic book work, Alan Moore has been dragged into the mainstream due to the fact that films have been made, based on his comics. This started with the 2001 loose adaptation of From Hell: Moore and Eddie Campbell’s graphic exploration of the Jack the Ripper murders. What we got from the Hughes brothers’ film is a visually impressive but predictable “whodunit” slasher. In the case of the source material – originally published in serial form from 1989 to 1996 a ...more
Kathryn
Dec 29, 2008 rated it it was ok
Shelves: graphic-novels
I was surprised that I didn't like it. Alan Moore, Victorian London, Jack the Ripper ... still, with all that, I had a hard time getting into it. I didn't like the art or even the lettering. Surprising how great a difference that made. Tiny panels, cramped print, murky and smeary black and white art: it just felt like a monotonous palette, at once over-detailed and sloppy. I could see using a limited palette, perhaps with accents of red, but the art itself or the reproduction needed to be crispe ...more
Derek
Ambitious, insightful, affecting, intricately mysterious, unnerving and unflinching in its brutality. This is the Jack The Ripper tale to end all Jack The Ripper tales.
I didn't read the appendix/Commentary though. I feel that a clock looses a bit of its lustre if you open its face and see the mechanisms and cogs at work.
Kosta Voukelatos
Feb 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
From Hell is a graphic novel that closely follows the mystery and intrigue surrounding Jack the Ripper. I found it to be a harrowing investigation of the motivations that can lead someone to commit such gruesome atrocities. I would definitely recommend this book for anyone who is interested in true crime or murder mysteries.
Batman
Feb 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
That does it, I'm convinced. This is how it happened.
Jesse A
Apr 02, 2014 rated it really liked it
Finally a Moore I enjoyed. One of the most dense graphic novels I've ever read.
Ill D
May 17, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I feel the reason why Alan Moore is so damn successful in the graphic novel genre is not just because of his experimental and unabashedly irreverent take on pretty much everything under the sun but, the simple fact that he refuses to condescend to his readers. EVER. Alan constantly challenges us. He understands that we live in a chaotic, insane, and utterly absurd existence (anyone that says otherwise is delusional) and his writing never shies away from this- not just letting it seep into his wr ...more
Jonfaith
Oct 03, 2016 rated it liked it
Mary Kelly was just an unusually determined suicide. Why don't we leave it there?

Well, that was that. From Hell is overflowing with sublime images, there is also a strident lyricism to the prose, My appreciation for both was hampered by my bullshit alarm ringing incessantly. There's this London school of the subversive, to which Moore belongs: Iain Sinclair and Peter Ackroyd are also practicing partners. They parse and weave, finding anecdote and parallel in the accrued centuries of history alon
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Richard
Aug 28, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: strong stomaches, open minds
Dense and rewarding graphic novel written by Alan Moore and illustrated in pen and ink by Eddie Campbell. The actual plot is gripping - especially from the middle to the end - but the story is also used as a jumping off point to discuss architecture, the nature of time, class, Masonry, and the transition from the Victorian to the modern era.

There's an interconnectedness to time in From Hell that I thought was really interesting, which takes full advantage of the graphic novel format. Conversati
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Matt
I don't really know how to review this book, but I feel I need to. First off, it's the first thing I've read since Salem's Lot at age 13 that gave me nightmares. They weren't specifically related to Jack the Ripper, but I can't honestly say the mindset I was in afterward didn't put me in a nightmare-mood.

The truth about this book is that the Ripper murders are almost tangential to the point of the work itself. The story, which is largely fictional though based on fact, is about the cover-up con
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Carol Storm
Jun 08, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Anyone can write a book that's pointless and stupid, but to write a graphic novel that's over 500 pages long and stays pointless and stupid till the very end . . . that's a real achievement.

I am so not surprised that this moron wrote the book WATCHMEN was based on. That movie was hands down the worst thing I've ever seen. After the opening credits of Bob Dylan singing "The Times They Are A Changing" while random super heroes get busted, I knew I was in for something truly awful. A story so mean
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Aaron
May 22, 2009 rated it it was ok
I'm very aware of the implications of criticizing the canon. Bazillions of you have already come through and gushed all over this dark, difficult graphic novel and through the weight of reputation alone, I feel like I should give it at least six or seven stars. I am reminded of a (now ex) girlfriend who told me Aguirre, Wrath of God was "boring" (which it is, but it's still great), or the dude who thought Gremlins was "stupid" (which it is, but it's still great). I guess I found From Hell hard t ...more
Morgan
Alan Moore is one of the smartest comic book writers of our time, if not the best. From Hell is another example of his genius. I can't say this is his best comic book because everything he does is great, but this is one of his smartest comic books that I have read. It's well resurrected and has enough reading material that makes this feel like a novel and not a graphic novel.

From Hell is about the Jack the Ripper. Saying it's about Jack the Ripper isn't the full story, it's much more. It not onl
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Goodreads Librari...: Merging new colorized edition 5 21 Sep 26, 2019 12:55PM  
undiscovered masterwork 1 14 Nov 08, 2017 08:07PM  
2017 Reading Chal...: From Hell 1 22 Feb 21, 2015 08:10AM  
The Dead Tree Soc...: Finally done reading this one! 1 7 Dec 30, 2014 07:22AM  

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15,459 followers
Alan Moore is an English writer most famous for his influential work in comics, including the acclaimed graphic novels Watchmen, V for Vendetta and From Hell. He has also written a novel, Voice of the Fire, and performs "workings" (one-off performance art/spoken word pieces) with The Moon and Serpent Grand Egyptian Theatre of Marvels, some of which have been released on CD.

As a comics writer, Moor
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Other books in the series

From Hell (1 - 10 of 11 books)
  • From Hell, Vol. 1
  • From Hell, Vol. 2
  • From Hell, Vol. 3
  • From Hell, Vol. 4
  • From Hell, Vol. 5
  • From Hell, Vol. 6
  • From Hell, Vol. 7
  • From Hell, Vol. 8
  • From Hell, Vol. 9
  • From Hell, Vol. 10

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