At Christmas Eve, a mysterious girl step into a bar where Shuji worked. After several visits, the girl never visited the bar anymore. Later, he saw her again near a crime scene, a man had just killed himself. Was the girl had anything to do with it? And what was that unusual shadow that kept following her?
About 2 months ago, I was quite surprise to see the name of one of my favorite female authors, Miyuki Miyabe, in a manga called Brave Story, my thought was what was she doing with manga? Later, I found out that there is a novel version of it. I didn’t buy the manga because it was a long volume manga. I have been avoiding buying long volume manga except for One Piece. The manga was drawn by another artist, Miyabe-sensei only wrote the story.
I have only read 2 of her books and I like them both, she has interesting way in building up the tense. I have read Crossfire, it was about a girl that can create fire, and Shadow Family, about a murder that happened in a cyber world made up family. I have eyed her other novel in my library called All She Was worth but still haven’t got the time to visit the library yet.
Two weeks ago, I saw another manga written by her, the title was The Hunting of the Snark. It was a 3 volumes manga and on discount (yaaii). I bought it straight away. I was planning to read it after my current read (Walking Dead by Peter Dickinson), but the current has getting too bored so I decided to read this manga first before getting back to that book again.
The Hunting of The Snark tells the story of a girl named Keiko Sekinuma who was deceived by her old boyfriend. Shinsuke Kokubu, her old boyfriend, used her by being nice with her so that she could pay for his college and dumped her the minute he graduated. He was to married another woman that came from a family of successful parents so that he could have a good career in the future. Keiko wanted nothing more than revenge, her heart was full of hatred toward Shinsuke and his friends who had introduced her to him. She met Shuji at Christmas Eve, Shuji fell for her at first sight. He couldn’t get her out of his mind. He met her again near a crime scene where a man had just committed suicide. Keiko wanted to use Shuji to help her with her revenge…but things didn’t go quite easy. One thing leads to another in high speed.
There were so many unexpected turns. I never guessed that it would end like that. The first two volumes were a bit slow,not boring but slow as if Miyabe was trying to built the emotion of the readers. She wanted us to feel sorry for Keiko and understand her pain. The third volume was the best, all the suspense and action were running at incredible speed. The shotgun moved hands so quickly, and people are trying to kill another for different reason.
Miyabe used Snark, the dark shadow that followed Keiko, as a representative of killing instinct, every time someone was filled with hatred and revenge, the snark would cling to that person’s shoulder looking extremely happy and then the person itself looked like the mysterious shadow, Snark. Miyabe also made the story revolve around a shotgun used by Keiko to kill her boyfriend. She was trying to say that gun has tendency to create violence.
I like the first 2 volume but I really like the last volume…Miyabe still manages awed me with her story. There was part of the story that didn’t make sense, but I can forgive that as the whole story was built really well.
Now about the art, at first I didn’t like Hiroto Oishi’s art. Maybe because I am used to see Manga characters drawn in cute way, this adult manga felt a bit unusual…Although I am not going to say it was the best art from adult manga, but I grew to like it at the end. I still prefer the art of Kakizaki Masasumi (Pandemic) and Yoshiki Tonogai (Doubt).
Manga is always a good way to escape from boring books
Title: The Hunting of The Snark
Author: Miyuki Miyabe
Art: Hiroto Oishi
Language: Indonesian (Original: 日本語)
Challenge: Manga Challenge 2011, Mystery and Suspense Reading Challenge 2011, Japanese Literature Reading Challenge 5 (For me, Graphic Novel is still literature)