Saturday, January 2, 2021

#IReadsYou Review: DEMON SLAYER: Kimetsu No Yaiba Volume 2


MANGAKA: Koyoharu Gotouge
LETTERS: John Hunt
EDITOR: Mike Montesa
ISBN: 978-1-9747-0053-0; paperback (September 2018); Rated “T” for “Teen”
192pp, B&W, $9.99 U.S., $12.99 CAN, £6.99 U.K.

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Koyoharu Gotoge.  The manga was serialized in Weekly Shonen Jump from February 2016 to May 2020.  VIZ Media has been publishing an English-language edition of the manga as a paperback graphic novel series under its “Shonen Jump” imprint since July 2018.

Demon Slayer is set in Taisho era Japan (1912 to 1926).  Tanjiro Kamado is a kindhearted boy who sells coal in order to support his mother and four siblings.  After one particularly taxing trip to sell coal, Tanjiro returns to his home in the forest to find his family slaughtered.  He discovers that a younger sibling, his sister Nezuko, has herself been transformed into a demon by the unknown demon that killed his family.

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu No Yaiba, Vol. 2 (Chapters 8 to 16) opens as Tanjiro battles a demon as part of the final selection for the Demon Slayer Corps.  Next, he must choose the kasugai crow that he will use for mission communication with the corps.  Tanjiro must also choose the ore from which his sword will be made, but after his sword is made, something unusual happens.

Tanjiro's begins to walk the path of the Demon Slayer by heading north to a town where young girls are disappearing.  Plus, Tanjiro learns of the name of the demon he must eventually confront, Muzan Kibutsuji.

THE LOWDOWN:  The Demon Slayer: Kimetsu No Yaiba manga is the latest in a line of excellent titles that VIZ Media has released in the last year.  A supernatural fantasy and revenge drama, Demon Slayer is demonic treat.

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu No Yaiba Graphic Novel 2 takes reader into the beginning of Tanjiro's quest and of his profession.  Creator Koyoharu Gotouge does not make things easy for his young hero.  I don't get the feeling that he will be defeated, but that he will undergo a learning process that we readers will get to experience with him.  I think that makes for a fun read.

I also like that Gotouge is not leaving Tanjiro's sister, Nezuko, as a mere victim or as nothing more than a liability.  When Gotouge gives her something to do, the cursed sister becomes a wild card character, engaging and appealing.  I almost want her to have her own manga; in the meantime, she makes Demon Slayer twice the fun to read.

I READS YOU RECOMMENDS:  Fans of demon-fighting heroes will want to read the Shonen Jump title, Demon Slayer: Kimetsu No Yaiba.

9 out of 10

Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux a.k.a. "I Reads You"

The text is copyright © 2020 Leroy Douresseaux. All Rights Reserved. Contact this blog or site for reprint and syndication rights and fees.


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