Erik's Reviews > A Drifting Life

A Drifting Life by Yoshihiro Tatsumi
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's review
Feb 14, 10

really liked it
Read in February, 2010

Having never heard of Tatsumi beforehand – which reveals just how little I know about the creators of comic books, or manga as they’re called, back east over the Pacific in Japan – I was delighted to learn about the history of post-WWII manga through the eyes of one of its alternative creators. Not only does this graphic memoir give an insider’s view into family dynamics growing up after the war, but also the ups and downs of the emerging manga forms alongside the cultural and political developments of post-war Japan. Of particular interest was learning about the influence of both American and French crime noir and new wave cinema on Tatsumi’s and his colleagues’ works.

Sadly, the manga subgenre of hard-boiled thrillers is much underrepresented in what has been imported here into the United States in the past several decades. Let’s hope Tatsumi’s A Drifting Life, frequently dubbed one of the best graphic novels published here in the States in 2009, changes that.
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