Friday, February 3, 2017

Tomie the Deluxe HC by Junji Ito

So Viz Media has been SLOWLY releasing Junji Ito's work. They originally started publishing series like Uzemaki and Gyo is soft cover manga style collections. I guess demand in the West has pushed them to start making deluxe hardcover books. Nerds like me couldn't be happier with this decision. I don't mind the soft cover standard manga books but its nice to have something a little special. The book nerd in me let go a big wet one.

I really do wish they would start to release some of his older works. He has many short stories and collections which have never been printed for North America. The first Junji stories I've ever read were short stories, some of which I've covered on early pages of this blog. You can check out my other reviews here:

The Town Without Streets
The Dark Drinks Blood
House of Puppets
The Window Next Door
Flesh Colored Horror: Dying Young
Uzemaki vol 2
Uzemaki vol 3
Fragments of Horror
Junji Ito's Cat Diary

So Tomie is a story about a girl who incites people to love her, kill for her, and run in fear of her. She repeatedly dies and yet somehow comes back to life. There's something monstrous about Tomie but no one knows what and worse, not everyone sees this side of her. As with many Junji stories, this one too centers on mass hysteria, paranoia and conspiracy. Throw in a bit a of body gore and I'm pretty much in heaven, er - weirdo, manga, comic book heaven.

Tomie is a massive book which was originally presented in serial form submitted to Monthly Halloween, a shōjo magazine in 1987. This is the series that Junji won the Kazuo Umezu Award. (Cat Eyed Boy, The Drifting Classroom).

This book cost me 40 dollars Canadian online. I would have ordered this locally but it was listed at an alarmingly expensive list price. This is an ongoing problem with comics and graphic novel retail in Canada. We are paying UP THE ASS for our comics because stores are paying UP THE ASS for books and comics from distributors. This is due to the American dollar and the fact that SOMEHOW Canadians are being forced to pay 20% more for our comics & books. This isn't just a problem with books. Canadians have always been shafted on goods from American companies, this is not simply a book problem. At any rate, there was a time when Canadian comic book retailers would charge the US cover price and not the listed Canadian cover price. That is no longer the case with the shops in my area and thus, I can't shop there as often as I'd like. Due to this reason, if there's a top quality book, I often have to source it online. SUCKS but I'm not rich.

ANYWAY, despite the price tag, it really is a fantastic book and feels very deluxe to hold. I dunno about you, but I really love just holding a book. I'm not being a very good minimalist, but books.. it's one thing I can't seem to let go of.

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