A Distant Neighborhood : Volume 1
Overview - Who hasn't dreamt of going back to childhood? But who has actually made the journey? Hiroshi Nakahara is a forty-something salaryman returning to Tokyo from an intense business trip. He is tired and somewhat hungover as he boards his train at Kyoto's enormous station. Read more...
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More About A Distant Neighborhood by Jiro Taniguchi; Frederic Boilet; Kumar Sivasubramanian
Who hasn't dreamt of going back to childhood? But who has actually made the journey? Hiroshi Nakahara is a forty-something salaryman returning to Tokyo from an intense business trip. He is tired and somewhat hungover as he boards his train at Kyoto's enormous station. He awakens to discover he is traveling back to the town of his upbringing, not Tokyo. Memories of his mother surface and he realizes he has the same age as her when she died. Arriving in Kurayoshi he is drawn through his distant neighborhood to the cemetery and his mother's grave. Here, under a late afternoon moon, he is transported back into his 14 year-old body and life whilst retaining all the character and experience of the adult. Will he change his past or be forever condemned to relive each painful moment? That fateful day his father disappeared without explanation, the death of his mother ... would he ever see his wife and daughters again? Master manga-ka Taniguchi at his most powerful with the art individually reversed to western style by craftsman Fr?d?ric Boilet. Volume 2 due in September.
Publishers Weekly Reviews
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
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Taniguchi employs a familiar plot device to begin an amiable story. One morning, 48-year-old business traveler Hiroshi Nakahara boards the wrong train—a recently built express to his old hometown. Upon arriving, he visits his mother’s grave, where he is mysteriously transported back in time. Hiroshi finds himself 14 years old, with full adult foreknowledge of all that is to come. The book proceeds to hit plot points typically associated with this genre at an easygoing clip, as the lead character visits long-gone people and places. As this volume progresses, Hiroshi slowly embraces his ability to relive his youth differently and prepares to address the great mystery of his childhood: the disappearance of his father. Just as Hiroshi is struck by the minutiae of a family dinner, Taniguchi exercises his own characteristic attention to ruminative detail. His artwork crisply delineates the details of place and time central to the story, while his writing dwells on the mental adjustments and minor pleasures of Hiroshi’s fantastic situation. Taniguchi’s execution charms, creating more anticipation for the forthcoming sequel than do the particular mechanics of this book’s otherwise familiar narrative arc. (June)