book review: gon vol. 1

Gon, Vol. 1Gon, Vol. 1 by Masashi Tanaka
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

have you ever wanted a book whose express purpose was to dunk on bullies from cover to cover? boy have i got a series for YOU.

gon hauls ass, man. i think the only reason this isn't a 5 is because i haven't re-read it yet—i'm going to reevaluate it some day when i'm helping my children through adolescence.

"remember what gon said at a time like this, little jachary..."
"dad, he doesn't say anything, to anyone, ever. he just creams their corn!"
[a tear in my eye] "you're damn right, son."

some of the most gorgeous line-work in the game, wish i could post images of it here! (this line is a vestige of the goodreads review)

i bought the italian boxset on amazon for like $40 and it's one of the most beautiful things i own. part of what's so great about this series (and why i can order an italian boxset in the first place) is that it features no written language—the entire text relies on the expressions of its animal kingdom to convey the plot and its "deeper" meaning. it doesn't blush when it comes to violence (plenty of hunting going on, and even some baby animals getting got...), but the way that tanaka tempers this with the comedy of gon's short temper and ridiculous strength ensures that each chapter (each of which is a disconnected story) hits peaks and valleys for cathartic release, each ending with an idea or feeling that would fall short in its expression if it had to be explicitly said aloud.

eager to continue this "series" and see the animal kingdom get pancaked by this doofus.

my star system:
1 star - this book must be forgotten by god and man
2 star - i was not wild about this book
3 star - other people will enjoy this more than i, but i see the appeal/enjoyed it/probably had some fun
4 star - i love this book and wholeheartedly recommend it
5 star - i am an absolute freak and this book was written specifically for me, your mileage may vary

(this is an experimental export of my goodreads reviews to my blog... we'll see how this goes.)