Monday, June 7, 2010

Solanin by Inio Asano FIC ASANO

Meiko and her friends are adrift in Tokyo. College is over but none of them seem to have any plans, true aspirations or hopes. When Meiko makes the drastic decision to quit her job and then encourages her boyfriend to take his band seriously it starts a series of events that tears their life apart. Just when there is a hope of pulling everything back together a sudden tragedy tests them all like never before.

This is another part of the excellent Viz Signature line of more serious and artistic manga aimed at older teens and adults. I am super thrilled about the line and already gave a glowing review to Tekkon Kinkreet by Taiyo Matsumoto (check it out if you haven’t already!) also from Viz Signature. It’s great that we are getting manga for all ages and tastes. Solanin is a beautiful story with a great cast. Some people may not really like the characters because they are admittedly lazy and sometimes hard to root for, but I think most people have that time of life where they don’t know what’s next. Solanin captures the fear of the future and the joy of rediscovering a personal connection with living. It does this best when it deals with music and how it transforms people and the music scenes are also the best drawn. The art is great throughout though, I just really like how Asano captured the raw energy of rock. If you like the more serious manga and want a totally self contained story then you should see if Solanin is for you. If you’re a swordfights and sci fi kind of comic fan, then you’ll probably want to give it a pass.

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