I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Published by Image Comics on January 27, 2015
Genres: Graphic Novel, Japanese Literature, Manga, Short Story
I Kill Giants co-creator Ken Nimura (International Manga Award winner and Eisner nominee) brings a unique vision of life in Japan to the page in Henshin.
The lives of a kid with peculiar superpowers, a lonely girl discovering herself in the big city, and a businessman on a long night out are some of the short stories included in this collection that will make you laugh, and even maybe shed a tear.
Explore Tokyo as you've never seen it before under Nimura's masterful and imaginative storytelling, printed here for the first time in English.
Mature-Content Rating: Language, Violence
This is basically commonly used Japanese tropes turned into manga and piled together in one graphic novel. Stories of families with super powers, an uncle that unknowingly works with the yakuza, a drunk businessman getting into a fight to save a girl, a Japanese “yankee” (thug)- all basic Japanese tropes if you’ve ever read manga or watched dramas.
What is nice is that each story is not only written differently, but the art is also different. It also includes the classical manga “notes from the author” art that is actually parts of the stories. The author, it seems, is obsessed with cats.
Overall, I recommend Henshin to readers who already have a good grasp of Japanese culture and literature. It might not be an easy starting point for those just jumping in.