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Thursday, July 22, 2021

Reader's Diary #2220 - Hiromi Goto (writer), Ann Xu (artist): Shadow Life


Shadow Life
, by Hiromi Goto and Ann Xu, was a highly unusual graphic novel. I'd be lying if I said I understood it completely, but I'd also be lying if I said I wasn't entirely enthralled. 

It revolves Kumiko, an elderly woman who seems to be pursued by death, or at least these weird creates of death. Are they real or is the woman going senile? In any case, for most of the story no one quite knows what to believe. Also, Kumiko is determined not to let them take her away. In the end, I suppose, there's a case to be made that whether they are real in the physical sense is hardly relevant.

Kumiko is a richly developed character, and of a sort you don't often see represented in the media (older Japanese bisexual woman) with a cast of supporting characters who are unique in their own right. 

Not that it all works. The art didn't do a lot for me and occasionally I couldn't tell what a particular panel was depicting. Plus, the supernatural elements felt too weakly defined at times. 

2 comments:

Laura Pond said...

I thought the illustrations of Kumiko were hilarious. As an older woman I too have those rolls of fat that just appear out of nowhere when you reach a certain age.

John Mutford said...

Yes, they were humorous, I'll agree