by Kazuo Koike
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I read this one expecting it to be a thriller. It wasn’t. But, it was a brilliant read and I can’t wait to get a chance to pick this up again.
This is about George, a Japanese man and King, an African man who’ve escaped from a slave ship and are now in a “historical” 18th century Japan trying to find a place to live in peace. Don’t expect an accurate depiction of history, this is more of a backdrop to a discussion on the ideas of slavery.
Through the story by Kazuo Koike attempts to illustrate the confinement of Japanese society through comparison of slavery in America. In it George is often explaining to King how they should act to get along in society. This basically requires them to humble themselves, prostrate themselves, and degrade themselves in a subservient manner to people who may be less than worthy. And, King making pointed observations about the problems with this.
There were a few moments which were pretty cringey, but there were also moments that were so beautiful and poignant…let’s just say, it gave me some significant “feels”.
This is the first time I’ve read a manga illustrated by Kano, who is a brilliant artist. There were so many gorgeous scenes, human figures, background scenes that I kept stopping just to absorb the art.
Highly recommended. (mature readers)