Thursday, September 07, 2006

"I don't wanna die. Screw you."

Best famous last words of a manga character that I've read so far.
Death Note; a 108 chapter manga. I came across it months ago through random browsing. The drawings were nice and the story interesting - a notebook that causes people, whose names are written in it, to die, if the writer knows their faces. The notebook belongs to Shinshigamis, gods or spirits of death. One of these notebooks falls into the hands of a student, who decides to create his perfect world by killing off all the people who are undeserving to live.
The manga is a mixture between crime story and thriller. There a lot of puzzling involved, by several characters. Sometimes too much. I enjoyed the general theme and story of the manga a lot. The beginning was very good, as was the ending. The middle part got tedious after a while. Too much scheming and planning, too much guessing and too many conspiracy theories. After that, too much explaining of conspiracy theories and how the plans were executed. Pages and Pages of it. I ended up skipping the explaining and just accepted that it had happened somehow. I guess I also lost some interest in the mange after two of my favourite characters were killed off, and the third (Misa) was pushed into the background; so I had a break of some months in betweeen in which I stopped reading the manga.
The last 10-15 chapters raised my interest again a lot. The last pages of the last chapter are fabulous in their atmosphere and execution. I don't fully understand them, but it was a good ending. Very satisfying. Plus, good dying words.
The manga is being published by Viz at the moment in English (up to Volume 8, I believe; you can even get it through German Amazon), and in German by Tokyopop, even though there's only one volume published so far, from what I know (maybe two).


I read on the Shadowmarch Forums that Tad Williams' next novel Shadowplay will be illustrated by Todd Lockwood. That's awesome news. A book by one of my favourite writers with a cover by one of my favourite artists. Can't get any better (wait... what about 'illustrated novel'?).

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