The Walking Man
by Jiro Taniguchi

The Walking ManThis 160-page french-flapped softcover volume collects eighteen zen-like tales of the "man who walks."  Reflective, insightful meditations on the modern, suburban condition, these stories embody the soul of manga.  While the landscape through which our hero walks is undeniably Japanese, the stories told and the lessons learned on his brief treks are indisputably universal.  Taniguchi has managed a unique feat here.  The comics work in The Walking Man is stripped of all extraneous elements.  There is a near total absence of narrative in the pieces collected in this volume.  With these distractions removed, we are left face to face with the pure essence of comics that remains.  Here we have comics that dig deep into the mind and trigger a panoply of sensations: the heat of the sun on one's back, a cool breeze along the side of one's face, the texture of a tree's bark on the palm of the hand, the smell of flowers, the cold, creamy taste of ice-cream, the hard exertions of a fast run, the overall feel of the encroaching darkness, the sounds of children laughing, water flowing, a passing train... all these sensations and more are triggered by the series of images that the reader is presented with as the pages are turned and the walking man goes on his way.  No work that we know of better captures the pure essence of manga than this one.  To get a better idea, check out this previewRecommended. 

retail price - $16.99 
- out of print and out of stock!  (write the publisher and tell them to reprint it!)


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prices and availability current as of 14 September 2010