Shigeru Mizuki's Kitaro

Shigeru Mizuki's Kitaro

The Birth of Kitaro

Graphic Novel - 2016
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More all-ages adventures with the one-eyed yokai boy, now in a kid-friendly format! The Birth of Kitaro collects seven of Shigeru Mizuki's early, and beloved, Kitaro stories, making them available for the first time in English, in an all-new, kid-friendly format. These stories are from the golden era of the late 1960s, when Gegege no Kitaro truly hit its stride as an all-ages supernatural series. Mizuki's Kitaro stories are both timelessly relevant and undeniably influential, inspiring a decades-long boom in stories about yokai, Japanese ghosts, and monsters.

"Kitaro's Birthday" reveals the origin story of the half-yokai boy Kitaro and his tiny eyeball father, Medama Oyaji. "Neko Musume versus Nezumi Otoko" is the first of Mizuki's stories to feature the popular recurring character Neko Musume, a little girl who transforms into a cat when she gets angry or hungry. Other stories in The Birth of Kitaro draw heavily from Japanese folklore, with Kitaro taking on legendary Japanese yokai like the Nopperabo and Makura Gaeshi, and fighting the monstrous recurring villain Gyuki.

With more than 150 pages of spooky and often funny comics about the titular half-yokai boy, The Birth of Kitaro is the perfect introduction to the award-winning author Mizuki's most popular series, seminal comics that have won the hearts of Japanese children and adults for more than half a century.
Publisher: [New York City] USA : Drawn & Quarterly, a client publisher of Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2016.
Edition: First paperback edition.
Copyright Date: ©2016
ISBN: 9781770462281
Branch Call Number: NC1709.M566 A6 2016
Characteristics: 187 pages : chiefly illustrations ; 20 cm
Alternative Title: Birth of Kitaro


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Aug 18, 2016

Suitable for preteens. Like the author's other work, the background drawings are lifelike, but the characters are cartoonish.

Aug 11, 2016

The art and layout of this book was extremely well done— the pages are built around a 3x4 grid, which provides some order to the sometimes chaotic storytelling. I especially liked the beginning, how they showed the constant storm and the overlaid stories.
However, in general I found this book a disappointment. The two recurring characters, Kitaro and Nezumi Otoko, are both flat, and don't change over the course of the book. The plot lines are formulaic, and there are no recurring story threads. Each story is wrapped up so tidily that it makes it hard to be invested.


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