NonNonBa

Overview

The first English translation of Mizuki's best-loved work

NonNonBa is the definitive work by acclaimed Gekiga-ka Shigeru Mizuki, a poetic memoir detailing his interest in yokai (spirit monsters). Mizuki’s childhood experiences with yokai influenced the course of his life and oeuvre; he is now known as the forefather of yokai manga. His spring 2011 book, Onward Towards Our Noble Deaths, was featured on PRI’s The World, where Marco Werman scored ...

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Overview

The first English translation of Mizuki's best-loved work

NonNonBa is the definitive work by acclaimed Gekiga-ka Shigeru Mizuki, a poetic memoir detailing his interest in yokai (spirit monsters). Mizuki’s childhood experiences with yokai influenced the course of his life and oeuvre; he is now known as the forefather of yokai manga. His spring 2011 book, Onward Towards Our Noble Deaths, was featured on PRI’s The World, where Marco Werman scored a coveted interview with one of the most famous visual artists working in Japan today.

Within the pages of NonNonBa, Mizuki explores the legacy left him by his childhood explorations of the spirit world, explorations encouraged by his grandmother, a grumpy old woman named NonNonBa. NonNonBa is a touching work about childhood and growing up, as well as a fascinating portrayal of Japan in a moment of transition. NonNonBa was the first manga to win the Angoulême Prize for Best Album. Much like its namesake, NonNonBa is at once funny and nostalgic, firmly grounded

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“Mizuki conveys his pen-and-ink messages with a surreal combination of cartoon-like people superimposed against harsh realistic renderings of their environment.” —Marco Werman, PRI’s The World

“Shigeru Mizuki is the preeminent figure of Gekiga manga and one of the most famous working cartoonists in Japan today–a true living legend.” —Graphic Novel Reporter

“[Mizuki] is one of Japan’s greatest illustrators, a master of both realism and manga.” —Globe and Mail

“This book is excellent . . . I can only hope we’re soon flooded by Mizuki translations. I’d like to drown in them.” —Newsarama

Library Journal
Mizuki is a one-armed artist who lost his limb in World War II combat horrors, which he thinly fictionalized in the acclaimed Onwards Towards Our Noble Deaths. But from childhood, the artist was drawn to a goofier roster of horrors: the supernatural creatures collectively termed yokai, from Japanese folklore. In this fictionalized memoir, young Shige grows up in rural Japan, scrapping with neighborhood kids and filling his head with ghost stories from neighborhood crone NonNonBa. NonNonBa has a yokai for every situation, and is not above impersonating a demon herself to scare off bullies chasing Shige. The book follows Shige as he matures and encounters yokai personally, with stories that are nostalgic, comical, and creepy all at once. Mizuki evokes the lush fantasy life of childhood as well as the perils of 1930s Japan, where children could be sold, elderly widows could starve, measles could strike down playmates, and militarism was growing. VERDICT A sort of family-with-monsters sitcom overlaying a serious period piece, this can be enjoyed by tween to adult readers and would make splendid family reading. The art tends towards realistic backgrounds with a more cartoonish style for people and yokai.—M.C.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781770460720
  • Publisher: Drawn & Quarterly
  • Publication date: 5/22/2012
  • Edition description: Translatio
  • Pages: 432
  • Sales rank: 272,405
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 8.60 (h) x 1.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Born on March 8, 1922, in Sakaiminato, Shigeru Mizuki is a specialist in stories of yokai and is considered a master of the genre. NonNonBa was named the Best Album at the Angoulême nternational Comics Festival. He has been published in Japan, South Korea, France, Spain, Taiwan, and Italy.

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