Inio Asano What a Wonderful World!, Vol. 1

ISBN 13: 9781421532219

What a Wonderful World!, Vol. 1

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9781421532219: What a Wonderful World!, Vol. 1
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Life is never ordinary. R to L (Japanese Style). What begins with a college dropout bored of her mediocre routine soon becomes a fantastic series of vignettes about the unexpected ways that lives intersect. Filled with magical realism in the face of the cold reality of modern life, at their core these stories are about discovering something precious in the chaos of existence. A dream recaptured. A life on a new track. The absurdity of death. Laughter in the face of reality. With this series of intersecting vignettes, Inio Asano explores the ways in which modern life can be ridiculous and sublime, terrible and precious, wasted and celebrated.

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About the Author:

Inio Asano, a bona fide earthling, was born in Ibaraki, Japan in 1980. In 2001 his short story Uchuu kara Konnichiwa (Hello from Outer Space) won the 1st Sunday GX rookie prize. Later GX published his series Subarashii Sekai (What a Wonderful World!). His other works include Hikari no Machi (City of Light), Nijigahara Holograph, solanin and Oyasumi Punpun.

From Publishers Weekly:

Asano's beautifully drawn anthology follows up his Harvey and Eisner–nominated Solanin with more short stories about sullen teenagers and 20-somethings. If anything, the short story format makes Asano's mopey protagonists far more sympathetic. Some of the characters are more likable than others; in two related shorts, appealing punk rocker Horita gives up his dreams of becoming a rock star to put on a suit and tie, only to recant later in the book. In A Town of Many Hills, a bullied teen believes a talking crow is a death god encouraging her to commit suicide. Like many of the book's protagonists, the girl overcomes her death wish, but hers is the most triumphant victory in the volume. Asano's artwork is very attractive, frequently interspersing all-black panels with the characters' inner thoughts in white text. His teens' navel-gazing thoughts are prone to platitudes, but much less so here than in Solanin. What a Wonderful World! is titled ironically, but its message to aimless and depressed young people is a positive one, told without preaching, and the artwork and strong storytelling make this another standout. (Oct.)
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