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Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2015-08-31
- Reviewer: Staff
The late Kon (1963-2010), a film director, is known for his award-winning existential animated films (Tokyo Godfathers; Paprika) that question the nature of reality and fantasy through female leads, but these 16 short comics—averaging 20–30 pages each—focus on the lives of young men in a straightforward, realistic storytelling style aimed at adults. From tales of baseball clubs and drinking groups to medieval war stories, most of the comics deal with high school and college students as they navigate social expectations, life milestones, and interactions with girls. Light-hearted innocence and ubiquitous hope infuse each charming story, and an impressive range of true-to-life characters keeps things fresh. Some American-style lettering conventions confuse speakers from time to time, but each successive story improves upon the last. The collection is far approachable than his previous book, Opus, in part because it's fully finished, but also because of the mastery of literary craft that shown in these tight-knit stories. (May)