Manga Man
Manga Man

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Annotation: Ryoko Kiyama, a character from a Japanese comic book, or manga, falls through a rip into the real world, the western world, and tries to survive as the ultimate outsider at a typical American high school.
Catalog Number: #69993
Format: Perma-Bound Edition
All Formats: Search
Special Formats: Graphic Novel Graphic Novel Manga Manga
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin
Copyright Date: 2011
Edition Date: 2011
Illustrator: Doran, Colleen,
Pages: 125 pages
Availability: Available
ISBN: Publisher: 0-547-85213-4 Perma-Bound: 0-605-51970-6
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-0-547-85213-3 Perma-Bound: 978-0-605-51970-1
Dewey: Fic
LCCN: 2011403000
Dimensions: 27 cm.
Language: English
Reviews:
ALA Booklist
East meets West when Ryoko, a manga character, falls through a mysterious hole in the space-time continuum to enter the real world of high-schooler Marissa Montaigne. Ryoko terally a manga character come to life, with the requisite tropes like androgynous looks, huge eyes, and features that distort wildly when he emotes eaks out all the "normal" inhabitants of Castleton, U.S.A., except for the former teen-queen Marissa. As they get to know each other better, Ryoko starts to reveal more and more of his reality to her, including life beyond the edges of a panel. The Western aspects of Doran's art seem a little dated, but this graphic meta-novel is still a fun, inventive story with steady dialogue and pacing. It also has great potential for discussion in terms of format, genre, and style for teen graphic-novel book clubs. This title will appeal to readers who are fans of both manga and Western comics or crossover titles such as Wolverine: Prodigal Son (2009) and X-men: Misfits (2009).
Horn Book
A rip in the fabric of the universe brings Ryoko, a character from a Japanese manga comic, into the real, Western world of this graphic novel, where he attempts to pass as normal in a typical high school. Ryoko is illustrated using manga conventions and style which not only causes him to be the ultimate outsider but makes for humorous metafiction to readers familiar with Japanese comics.
Publishers Weekly
A clever idea-tossing a mangastyle boy into American graphic novel art, where the "proper" characters see his differences-is more successful artistically than textually. The obvious points are hit, beautifully illustrated by Doran: Marissa's a very popular girl who, bored, ditches her sports star boyfriend and starts dressing in costumes. (The ex is just this side of a date-rapist-in-training.) Ryoko is a refugee from a world where all the manga conventions are true. They fall in love, leading to images of him with literal hearts in his eyes, visible sweat drops (indicating passion), the janitor having to sweep up his speed lines, and so on. This is all expected, given the premise. The pacing, though, runs in fits and starts, and the book can't seem to decide whether it wants to be about in-jokes for genre fans, saving the world from generic monsters, or exploring high school culture clash. Once Lyga starts truly playing with postmodernism (a sequence where Doran excels, evoking Mucha), it feels as though he's run out of space for his goals, as well as descending into unexpectedly sexual and violent scenes. A longer book from an adult imprint might have been more successful. Ages 12-up. (Nov.)
School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up&12; Graphic-novel tropes are turned on their heads in this fish-out-of-water story. Beautiful yet misunderstood Marissa Montaigne finds herself attracted to the new boy in town&12;who, in this case, happens to be from another dimension where life resembles a Japanese comic book. Ryoko is straight out of a 1970s shoujo manga, complete with wavy hair and enormous shimmering eyes rimmed with luxurious lashes, and inexplicably has a name commonly used for girls. Visual gags such as speed lines and Dragonball hair may go over the heads of readers not into graphic novels, but dedicated fans of the format will revel in Lyga's self-referential humor. A subtle exploration of racism adds depth to the action-packed plot, as Western-style characters react with fear and distrust to Ryoko's foreignness. Esteemed artist Doran juggles manga and Western illustration styles effortlessly, capturing their defining characteristics with pitch-perfect accuracy. Even the page layouts are marked by appropriate stylistic differences; the Western-style pages follow a boxy, linear progression, while the manga-style layouts flow freely. A brief sexual situation&12;quickly turned humorous by poking fun at Japanese censorship&12;may make this title most appropriate for high school audiences. Although manga fans might need convincing to pick up a graphic novel that is drawn mostly in a gritty Western style, they will be rewarded with a story full of clever humor and human emotions.&12; Allison Tran, Mission Viejo Library, CA
School Library Journal Starred Review
Gr 9 Up&12; Graphic-novel tropes are turned on their heads in this fish-out-of-water story. Beautiful yet misunderstood Marissa Montaigne finds herself attracted to the new boy in town&12;who, in this case, happens to be from another dimension where life resembles a Japanese comic book. Ryoko is straight out of a 1970s shoujo manga, complete with wavy hair and enormous shimmering eyes rimmed with luxurious lashes, and inexplicably has a name commonly used for girls. Visual gags such as speed lines and Dragonball hair may go over the heads of readers not into graphic novels, but dedicated fans of the format will revel in Lyga's self-referential humor. A subtle exploration of racism adds depth to the action-packed plot, as Western-style characters react with fear and distrust to Ryoko's foreignness. Esteemed artist Doran juggles manga and Western illustration styles effortlessly, capturing their defining characteristics with pitch-perfect accuracy. Even the page layouts are marked by appropriate stylistic differences; the Western-style pages follow a boxy, linear progression, while the manga-style layouts flow freely. A brief sexual situation&12;quickly turned humorous by poking fun at Japanese censorship&12;may make this title most appropriate for high school audiences. Although manga fans might need convincing to pick up a graphic novel that is drawn mostly in a gritty Western style, they will be rewarded with a story full of clever humor and human emotions.&12; Allison Tran, Mission Viejo Library, CA
Starred Review for Kirkus Reviews
A daring piece of graphic-novel meta-fiction explores the tropes of manga versus Western comics. Marissa is a stereotypical popular high-school girl: pretty, well-liked and girlfriend of Chaz, the hottest guy in school. But when she first lays eyes on Ryoko, a manga character who travels through "the Rip" into her world, she abandons the formulaic constraints that defined her. Ryoko helps Marissa see that her world, though very different than his, is still boxed in by panels, and that, like him, she is a character in another universe. Even as he plays with literary inventiveness, Lyga keeps the story accessible with the doomed and forbidden love between Marissa and Ryoko. Those familiar with both Western and Japanese comics will delight at the little nods to the respective conceits in those formats. For example, when Ryoko slams a volleyball in gym class, a fellow classmate exclaims, "Watch your speed lines!" In complement to Lyga's clever meta tone is Doran's highly stylized black-and-white art, seamlessly melding both the Western and Japanese comics aesthetics. While the innovation runs high in this tale, the story itself and the nuances of the character's relationships is less agile, though the energetic creativity behind it easily keeps the lesser aspects afloat. An inventive offering, sure to please fans of both American and Japanese comics. (Graphic fiction. 13 & up)
Word Count: 5,096
Reading Level: 2.0
Interest Level: 7-12
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 2.0 / points: 1.0 / quiz: 148861 / grade: Upper Grades

"Fantastic--in every sense of the word! . . . Fans of both comics and manga will love Mangaman." --Jeff Smith, author of Bone When Ryoko Kiyami, a manga character from a manga world, falls through the Rip into the "real" Western world, he must learn to survive as an outsider at a typical American high school. He must find a way back through the Rip to his manga world, but things tangle up when he develops "hearts for eyes" for a beautiful girl from the wrong kind of comic book. This metafictive masterpiece blends manga and traditional Western comic book styles to create a complex comic hybridthat's both hilarious and heartbreaking.


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