Monday, February 12, 2007

Manga Monday 25: Tanpenshu

Tanpenshu (Volume 1)
Hiroki Endo

Tanpenshu is the first of two books from the very talented Hiroki Endo, who's best known for his sci-fi epic Eden: It's An Endless World! This a collection of short stories that occur in the real world, and as such, Endo proves his mastery over the medium with the diversity of his storytelling skills in this fantastic first volume. I was blown away by the depth and characterization that Endo was able to establish in such short numbers while maintaining that level of quality art that any fan of Eden has become familiar with. The first story contained within examines a blooming friendship between a disfigured girl and a yazuka outcast, and though it was my least favorite of the stories, it served as a great introduction to the volume. The other two stories, Because You're Definitely a Cute Girl (about a very disturbed high schooler) and For Those of Us Who Don't Believe In God (about the relationships of a theater troupe) were pretty much perfect and (particularly with the latter story) demonstrated a maturity and weight that is all too rare in a lot of manga out there. This is a must-buy. A+

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