Asa runs into a young man at a museum who has a photograph of the monster she saw when the typhoon took her family. He refuses to talk to a “nobody” like her and scuttled off with a ton of research on the monster. Asa and Mr. Kasuga are then conscripted to help identify the creature should it make an appearance during the opening ceremony of the 1964 Tokyo Olympics. Asa makes the acquaintance of The Blue Impulse - some of the best aerial maneuver pilots in the country - as they practice making the Olympic Rings for the Opening Ceremony. The Government is using this display as an important symbol of peace, and, because of this, the Defense Forced won’t be allowed to intercede during the Opening Ceremony should the monster return.
The monster who has been popping up periodically in the other volumes is front and center in this one, but there is still a lot more to this story than the creature. Asa is somehow such a wonderful character, despite (or because of?) her infinite amount of sass. There are so many threads in this story that are not clearly woven together yet, but they add to the richness of the overall world Urasawa is building. The desperate elements will probably come together at some point. For now, we have a couple of hanging threads: Asa’s two friends dream of being movie stars, and there is this budding conflict that one wants Asa to solve because she's been scouted and the other hasn't; and, Asa's siblings have a rivalry with another family that often leads to fist fights. There's also the undercurrent of historical events, like the Tokyo Olympics that has become a little more integrated in this volume than previous ones. All together, there is so much to this story that the pages fly by without moving the main plot terribly much, but still keeping the reader entertained.
Sara's Rating: 10/10
Suitability Level: Grades 10-12
Reviews of previous volumes in this series: vol 1, vol 2
Publisher: VIZ Media
Publication Date: August 17, 2021
ISBN: 9781974720118 (Paperback)
Tags: Rating: 10/10, Suitability: High School, Manga, Action Adventure, Historical Fiction, Family
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