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Ode To Kirihito [Paperback]

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Item description for Ode To Kirihito by Osamu Tezuka...

It may or may not be contagious. There seems to be no cure for it. Yet, Monmow Disease, a life-threatening condition that transforms a person into a dog-like beast, is not the only villain in this shocking triumph of a medical thriller by manga-god Osamu Tezuka. Said to have been the personal favorite of the artist, who held a degree in medicine, and surprisingly attentive to Christian themes and imagery, Ode to Kirihito demolishes naive notions about human nature and health and likely preconceptions about the comics master himself.

From pregnant vistas of the Japanese countryside to closed rooms full of sin and redemption, Tezuka astounds for more than eight hundred continuous pages, his art in turn easefully concise and flamboyantly experimental, his inquiry into our most repugnant instincts and prospects for overcoming them unflinchingly serious. Incorporating elements of the often lurid and adult-oriented “gekiga” style for the first time, Tezuka entered into his fruitful late period with this work.

A promising young doctor, Kirihito Osanai visits a remote Japanese mountain village to investigate the source of the latest medical mystery. While he ends up traveling the world to discover what it takes to be cured of such a disease, a conspiracy back home attempts to explain away his absence. Hinging upon his fate are those of his loved ones: an unstable childhood friend and colleague trapped between factions of the medical establishment that nurtured him; a fiancée emotionally transformed by Kirihito's mysterious disappearance; and a stranger who becomes his guardian angel, a sensual circus-act performer with volatile psychological secrets.

From plutocratic Taipei and racially divided South Africa to backwater Arabia and modern Osaka, ambition and desire beckon “normal men” to behave uglier than any beast. Riveting our attention on deformity and its acceptance like The Elephant Man by David Lynch, Ode to Kirihito examines the true worth of human beings through and beyond appearances.
Ode to Kirihito is moving, tender and engrossing. Also very, very odd.”
—Neil Gaiman, author of The Sandman and Anansi Boys

“A thoroughly original, wonderfully bizarre, and compulsively readable masterwork. Ode to Kirihito is a vital testament to Tezuka's range as an artist, as well as an awe-inspiring example of the possibilities of the graphic novel.”
—Adrian Tomine, writer/artist of Optic Nerve and Summer Blonde

“Tezuka was like a god for me. He shocked the manga world with the medical thriller genre, and the work he did it with was Ode to Kirihito — a monumental suspense masterpiece that shows off Tezuka's two points of expertise — manga and medicine.”
—Yoshihiro Tatsumi, author of The Push-Man and Abandon the Old in Tokyo

Tezuka-san turns his comic book mastery to evil in this terrifying examination of moral decay.  Fans of Japanese horror both new and old should not miss this shocking single volume that will completely change Tezuka's American reputation as the Japanese Walt Disney.  Brutal, depraved and savage, Kirihito will leave you panting like a beaten dog-man!
—Andrew D. Arnold, Time comics critic
Osamu Tezuka (1928-1989) is the godfather of Japanese manga comics. He originally intended to become a doctor and earned his degree before turning to what was still then considered a frivolous medium. With his sweeping vision, deftly intertwined plots, and indefatigable commitment to human dignity, Tezuka elevated manga to an art form. His eight-volume epic Buddha, winner of the Eisner and Harvey Awards, is also available from Vertical.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   832
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8" Width: 6" Height: 2.3"
Weight:   2.25 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Oct 24, 2006
Publisher   Vertical
ISBN  1932234640  
ISBN13  9781932234640  

Availability  0 units.

More About Osamu Tezuka

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Osamu Tezuka was born on November 3, 1928, in Osaka. He grew up in an open-minded family exposed to comics and Walt Disney. As a boy he also had a love for insects, which he would later as a grown-up incorporate into pen name. Having developed an intense understanding of the preciousness of life from his wartime experience, Osamu Tezuka aimed to become a physician and later earned his degree in medicine, but ultimately chose the profession he loved best: manga artist and animated film writer.
Tezuka's manga and animated films had a tremendous impact on the shaping of the psychology of Japan's postwar youth. His work changed the concept of Japanese comics, transforming it into an art form and incorporating a variety of new styles in creating the "story cartoon." Osamu Tezuka lived out his entire life tirelessly pursuing his efforts, passing away at the age of 60 on February 8, 1989.
In all, Tezuka produced more than 150,000 pages of graphic storytelling before his death. Posthumously Tezuka's work have won a number of awards in the U.S., including the 2009 Eisner Award given to his series Dororo.

Osamu Tezuka was born in 1928 and died in 1989.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Comics & Graphic Novels > Manga > By Creator > Tezuka, Osamu
2Books > Subjects > Comics & Graphic Novels > Manga > General
3Books > Subjects > Comics & Graphic Novels > Manga > Shonen (Boys)
4Books > Subjects > Comics & Graphic Novels > General
5Books > Subjects > Comics & Graphic Novels > Graphic Novels > General
6Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General

Reviews - What do customers think about Ode To Kirihito?

Engrossing read  Sep 21, 2008
Engrossing read. An interesting one from Tezuka... Quite the classic serial story with social insights and decidedly an interesting build up and treatment of characters.
(Not a very good poem, but not very bad, either.)  Aug 24, 2007


Gentle dog-faced doctor,
You wander such a difficult world.
Your self-importance, your violence,
emptied out by suffering,
You are more you now
Than before you had a dog's face.

This was the first "comic book" I had read since 1940. I read it in one sitting.

Awesome !  Aug 22, 2007
This is my 3rd Manga ever and I was simply blown away. I ordered this book along with Osamu's other Buddha titles. I had no intention of reading it at first glance because I had other more coveted titles, anyway I just took a while to browse it and I couldn't put it down for next 4 and half hrs till I finished it. Its hands down one of the most engrossing book. Osamu is simply brilliant and is a master story teller weaving all human emotions in this superbly crafted book. His brillance lies in developing each character and handling it in such a way that left you gasping and wonder how keen an observer Osamu was.
Epic and thrilling  Jul 25, 2007
If this were a film, it would surely be a mixture of art-house in moments and Cecil B DeMille in others -- with intimate character development but spanning Japan, China and the Middle East. It's thriller, love story, medical drama, spiritual quest, adventure and crime story with an eu de scifi wafting over the whole concotion. Typical Tezuka drawing style, which I find clear and compelling but others may have their own opinions.
Human Prosperity in the Face of Adversty  May 21, 2007
Ode To Kirihito is one of those stories that fills you with inspiration and hope. Tezuka doesn't hold any hands or make the world more gentle then it needs to be: the picture he paints is a very bleak one, filled with racism, elitism, selfishness and greed. And yet, we as humans can still somehow overcome all this.

This is an excellent manga, and I highly recommend to anybody who enjoys a great story.

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