Kiriko Nananan’s Blue is the story of a schoolgirl named Kayako Karishima. She’s always liked one of the girls she goes to school with, Masami Endo, but their friends aren’t friends with each other, and Masami Endo’s been in some trouble at school, so they’ve never talked . . . until their senior year of high school, when they become close friends. The friendship of Kayako and Masami becomes a canvas for the author to examine all the issues girls in Japan deal with in high school: sex, drugs, pregnancy, academics, homosexuality, and how to go from being a very sheltered high school student to having a life of your own. But while Kiriko Nananan explores these issues, she never loses sight of her main characters and their poignant story. In Blue, Kiriko Nananan tells a story that will resonate with high school girls around the world, while still providing an insider’s point of view on Japanese culture that students interested in finding out what it’s really like to live in Japan will find fascinating. With a simple, distinct line and poetical narration, this book looks and sounds unlike any other manga you’ll be able to find in English. Kiriko Nananan’s Blue addresses a number of controversial, sensitive issues, and is written for older teens and adults.
by Kiriko Nananan
Fanfare/Ponent Man, 2002