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Hero Tales - Vol I

by Hiromu Arakawa


Young Taitou longs to complete his coming-of-age ceremony, as he is the last boy in his village to do so. When he finally does, he is presented with a most unusual gift, an ancient sword called Kenka Ranbu that can only be drawn by a true hero. Before Taitou can do this, a thief steals the sword, and Taitou learns to his amazement that he is one of the seven heroes. He wields the power of one of the stars that make up the Big Dipper and is destined to be in conflict with another star of equal power. Now he must set off on a long journey to find the sword, and his own destiny.

Now read on! This sword-and-sorcery tale has plenty to recommend it, from lots of action to some intriguing mysteries and interesting characters. As a print novel it would have to rely on verbal descriptions alone, but as manga the reader is treated to some excellent drawings of classical era China that bring the story to life. There is even a postscript at the back detailing how the author travelled to China to see what it all looked like and thus get the look exactly right. This trip was a success, and I look forward to discovering what exciting adventures happen to Taitou next.

The Book

Yen Press (Distributed in the UK by Little, Brown)
November 2009
0759531161 / 9780759531161
Older Teenage Fantasy / Historical - Classical China / Manga
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The Reviewer

Rachel A Hyde
Reviewed 2010
© 2010