Tuesday, April 22, 2008

the yellow jar

i have not read a graphic novel in years and years but i was really impressed with this one by patrick arangan. the book consists of two japanese folk tales. the art is amazing collection of japanese woodblock prints called "ukiyo-e." the subdued color scheme and yellowish brown background page give that impression of looking at something very old.

the first story is about a fisherman who weds the sea-king's daughter (who he found in a yellow jar) but deals dishonestly with her and loses her. both the fisherman's honor and his marriage are redeemed by his willingness to fight a demon and even sacrifice his life for his love.

two chrysanthemum maidens, in which a monk mistakes chrysthemums for weeds invading his garden, simply describes the folly of using appearance as the determiner of worth.

i would love to see other work by atangan and know that he has two other books in print right now.

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