ME 2 Volume 1
Murase (Nancy Drew) unravels a typical high school narrative of anxiety and self-loathing through highly stylized visuals and an array of text fonts. Aki is a high school student who lives in the shadow of her brother's reputation and is haunted by his death. At school, she's the brunt of jokes and harassed by most of her classmates. Luckily, her insecurities make room for her alter ego, Kai, to come forth and intimidate the mean girls. Murase is obviously a talented illustrator, but whether her illustrations can lend themselves to graphic fiction is another question. The flourish of each panel often distracts from the narrative, and Murase has difficulty balancing the visuals with the story itself. The dialogue is stale and unimaginative, and the characters too flat for such artistic talent. Readers may even find the story obscured by the graphics and multiple fonts used throughout, and the ending is especially confusing. The law of show, don't tell still rings true, and Murase could benefit from more scenes illustrating Aki's brother's perfect reputation, or condensing the multiple verbal attacks she is subjected to. Me 2 has promise, as does Murase, but needs a clearer presentation. (July)
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From the gifted international artist Sho Murase comes a manga series that will force you to question anything and everything you think you know about reality...Aki is a shy, introverted teen trying to cope with the death of her older brother. This, coupled with the daily pressures being the most bullied kid in school, lead to her having mysterious blackouts. Entire days begin to be unaccounted for as Aki finds strange items in her closet. Adding to her bewilderment is that the cutest boy in school suddenly takes an interest in her. As Aki wonders if her grip on reality is slowly slipping away, something even more shocking might be behind this haunting tale...
book has some creases on the spine, doesn't affect readability and is well worth the artwork!
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