A collection of short stories by the famed horror mangaka, which include: a creepy recording of a singer from beyond the grave; a curse that causes many small holes to open up on the skin; an alien-looking model cast in an independent film to the detriment of cast and crew; giant replicas of people's faces chase them and try to hang them; a mansion with a family strung up like marionettes; a man with a nighttime dream that gets progressively longer; a girl who experienced trauma that left her mind shattered is coaxed into marrying and procreating to continue a family line; a residence above a barbecue restaurant drips with oil, and the proprietor may be using that to season his family members; and a bonus revisiting to the alien model storyline with a girl who is afraid cropped photos of her will result in her limbs being severed.
As story collections go, this focuses more on the horror aspect with the people turning into horrific monsters, rather than the psychological horror that was in many of the stories of Venus in the Blind Spot. One of the hallmarks of an Ito scary story is to have the shocking reveal within the last few pages, leaving little room for any sort of closure or resolution. Some readers are fine with this, but it can leave some of the stories with really unsettling (not in the intended way) consequences. In "Honored Ancestors", as in the short story of "Venus in the Blind Spot", there is some uncomfortable implied rape in the reveal that isn't dealt with before the ending. Unfortunately, many of these themes of bodily harm are a major hallmark of the Horror genre, so any Ito collection should be carefully considered to make sure it is good for your collection and your students.
Sara's Rating: 7/10
Suitability Level: Grades 10-12
Publisher: VIZ Media
Publication Date: December 19, 2017
ISBN: 9781421596938 (Paperback)
Tags: Rating: 7/10, Suitability: High School, Manga, Horror, Story Collection, VIZ Media
I've been reading manga and comicbooks for years. Now, I write reviews and other helpful things for School Librarians, teachers, parents, and students.
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