Divya Manian

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Book Reviews for July 2010 - Part 1

I seem to be reading more and more Manga comics. I am in the middle of three manga series and they all are fantastic (Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service, Psycho, and Pluto) and I regret not reading manga comics earlier. I recommend all of these series!

Pluto Vol 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8

I am a new fan of manga comics, but Pluto has sucked me in unlike any other graphic novel/comic. This is the first Manga series I have completed, and I could not stop thinking of the future imagined in Pluto. I am amazed at how Naoki Urasawa has weaved a beautiful web around murder mysteries, Roboethics, and transhumanism. That it is an adaptation of an arc of Astroboy only makes it better. Anyone who sniggers at Manga comics needs to be pointed to Pluto, just to show how engrossing they can be!

We Wish to Inform you that tomorrow we will be killed with our families: Stories from Rwanda

We Wish to Inform You That Tomorrow We Will be Killed With Our Families: Stories from Rwanda is a heart-wrenching narration of the Rwandan genocide. Unlike similar books of this genre, Philip Gourevitch also informs us about the crimes committed by the Rwandan Patriotic Front (ruling party of Rwanda). Philip Gourevitch is brutal in his assessment of the inadequacy of the United Nations and the deliberate inaction on part of United States. The existence of genocide criminals like Georges Ruggiu seems to validate that view.

Essential Iron Man

I am amazed how close the movie is to the comic book. Essential Iron Man, Vol. 1. So, instead of Vietnamese villains we have Arabic ones. Though, Iron Man comics are definitely more mushy (and sexist) than what the movie portrays, and hence, not that interesting (in one of the stories, Stan Lee pleads with the reader to stay with the comics despite reading like a romance novel).


The Dreamer is an autobiographical graphic novel about Will Eisner’s struggle as a comic artist. It is a good story, but I am pretty sure success did not come as simply as it is narrated. I liked The Contract with God better.

I have a bunch of dreary books to finish, so off I go.