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July 26, 2010

Bento Bako Weekly: Children of the Sea vol. 3

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Written by: Kristin
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Title: Children of the Sea
Author: Daisuke Igarashi
Publisher: Viz Media (Sig IKKI)
Volume: Volume 3 (ongoing), $14.99
Vintage: 2008 by Shogakukan in Japan, June 2010 from Viz Media
Genre: Adventure, mystery, fantasy, older teen

The story of the previous two volumes is a little difficult to explain without having read them myself, so I’ll let the summary in the book take care of that today; it’s fairly adequate: “During summer vacation Ruka meets Sora [sky] and Umi [sea], two boys who were raised by dugongs [similar to a manatee or sea cow].  After meeting the boys, strange things begin to happen.  A mysterious shooting star appears, fish turn into light and disappear…
Sora runs away with Anglade [a young marine biologist] to discover the secret of his birth.  Ruka and a depressed Umi, who has lost his ability to speak, travel to the Ogawara Islands to find them.  That night Sora gives Ruka the meteorite he was keeping.  Soon after, his body starts to glow and he disappears in front of Ruka’s eyes.  Meanwhile, mysterious things are happening in the oceans all over the world…”

Ruka, traumatized by watching Sora disappear into the sea, has stopped talking and has begun to wander off on her own.  Umi, however, is talking again, and telling strange stories about being born as an eagle ray.  Ruka, who feels the meteorite inside of her calling out to someone, asks Anglade to take her and Umi out to sea.  Umi, believing that half of Ruka’s soul is somewhere in the sea, left behind when Sora disappeared, dives into the ocean to bring it back to her, making Ruka whole, though she still has another being living inside her.  As they search for the secrets of the sea, they come upon a pod of false killer whales, and Ruka and Umi dive into the ocean.  As she swims with the whales, Ruka witnesses various memories that tell the story of Jim and Anglade meeting Sora and Umi, and illustrate various mythologies that involve the ocean.  Anglade also reminisces on his own past, remembering his time with Jim, Umi, and Sora, and his own childhood.  What will Ruka find as she follows Umi into the depths of the sea?

Ruka, Anglade, and Umi set out to sea in Children of the Sea volume 3.

There is no way anything I say can do this book justice.  I could go on and on about the breathtaking art.  The immense expanse of the sea, or the giant sea creatures.  The gorgeous bare handful of color pages that make me desperately wish the entire book was in color.  The haunting gazes of the children and the piercing eyes of the sea animals.  It absolutely deserves to be seen.  And that’s just the art.  The text on the pages is also captivating.  It’s a little too scientific and philosophical for me personally, but that’s just my tastes.  The story playing out here is engaging, mystifying, and stimulating.  The ocean is the mother of creation.  Sharks with mouths that connect the Earth and Heaven swim in its depths.  A god swims the oceans as a sting ray, observing the humans, and blinding or killing anyone who looks into his eyes.  Ancient creation myths tell the tale of a war amongst the gods, and a fallen goddess whose body was ripped apart, with one half becoming the Heavens, and the other half the Earth.  Others tell of a primal water that gave birth to man.  In every myth, the water gives birth to the world.  In a very Evangelion-like manner, a scientific expedition traveled to the Antarctic Ocean, and saw some mysterious evidence that gave credence to the old creation myths and the existence of a Primal Man.  The secrets of the past and the future all lie in the ocean, the giver of life.  Sora and Umi, the Children of the Sea, may be the keys to unlocking the mystery.  It’s all very fascinating; Igarashi is creating a rich mythology that is sure to captivate anyone willing to dive into (pardon the pun) this book.

You can preview Children of the Sea at the SigIKKI.com website.

Kris
kristin@comicattack.net
@girlg33k_Kris

Review copy provided by Viz Media.

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6 Comments



  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Kristin Bomba, Got Agel. Got Agel said: Bento Bako Weekly: Children of the Sea vol. 3: Umi, however, is talking again, and telling strange stories about b… http://bit.ly/aNFfWy […]


  2. Billy

    Sounds good. I’m really liking the artwork too.


  3. Kristin

    Yeah, the art is really amazing.



  4. […] Erica Friedman on Book Girl and the Suicidal Mime (novel) (The Manga Curmudgeon) Kristin on vol. 3 of Children of the Sea (Comic Attack) Amy Grockl on The Clique (Comics Village) Dave Ferraro on vol. 1 of ES […]



  5. […] Erica Friedman on Book Girl and the Suicidal Mime (novel) (The Manga Curmudgeon) Kristin on vol. 3 of Children of the Sea (Comic Attack) Amy Grockl on The Clique (Comics Village) Dave Ferraro on vol. 1 of ES […]



  6. […] [Volume 3 review.] […]



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