Mijeong

Mijeong

by Byun Byung-Jun
     
 

In Chinese, ‘Mijeong’ means ‘pure beauty.’ In the cold city, young people’s lives cross and spark for brief moments in this remarkably drawn graphic novel; Wounded characters, squashed by the daily hard realities of urban living whose destinies take sudden unannounced turns but their inner flames shine bright and wild, even for a brief

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Overview

In Chinese, ‘Mijeong’ means ‘pure beauty.’ In the cold city, young people’s lives cross and spark for brief moments in this remarkably drawn graphic novel; Wounded characters, squashed by the daily hard realities of urban living whose destinies take sudden unannounced turns but their inner flames shine bright and wild, even for a brief time. This engrossing collection of stories will transfix and move you deeply.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

The short story collection Mijeong handsomely showcases young manhwa artist Byung's relatively accomplished illustrative style, while his stories reveal a still-germinal narrative voice. These short tales trade in the gothic melodrama of urban malaise, with murder, assault, rape and suicide frequently present as plot points for youthful characters to repress, enact or unexpectedly react to. Byung sometimes succeeds in wringing moments of genuine pathos from his sensitive, affectless teens' responses to outsized traumas, as in the final moments of the delicately full-color "Song for You." But the narratives work best when linking youth's behavior to specific urban landscapes and mores, which he accomplishes almost entirely visually in the semihumorous "Utility." This collection emphasizes the artist's diverse visual treatments of his observant settings and stylized figures, though his characters are sometimes difficult to tell apart, and his visual storytelling is occasionally unclear, but Byung is clearly a talented draftsman with narrative ambitions. Byung's artwork may already earn him some fans, and Mijeong may yet go down as a somewhat interesting early work by a developing storyteller. (July)

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VOYA - Kristin Fletcher-Spear
For those who believe that there are few quality manwha (Korean comics) available, this short story collection proves them wrong. The portrayal of cold, empty city life is detailed through the eyes of teens, the elderly, and even a cat. Yeon-du, Seventeen Years Old shows the harsh reality of a young girl alone with fading memories of her love's death and what she will do to keep them. Utility focuses on teens who debate how to dispose of the dead body of one's older sister. A Song for You is the only piece in color. The muted pastels bring to life a desolate story about a boy who no longer sings because he is searching for his lost sister. 202, Sinil Villa is a comic artist's dream of power and control. Courage, Grandfather! is the tale of a cat who lovingly follows a Japanese teacher and glares at the Korean exchange student who likes her. The city is portrayed through monochromatic artwork that adds to the bleakness of the stories. The panel artwork can be quite skilled and powerful at times. Disproportionate faces sometimes add a grotesque side to the reading. The stories are unique and powerful on their own, but together they create a solid theme for the collection. Although this title is definitely for comic readers who enjoy more literary quality in their sequential artwork, it has a larger appeal than the typical literary graphic novel. High school teens and adults will find inspiration here. Reviewer: Kristin Fletcher-Spear

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781561635542
Publisher:
N B M Publishing Company
Publication date:
06/28/2009
Pages:
237
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.70(d)
Age Range:
16 - 18 Years

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