From Publishers Weekly
As a young girl, Ruka sees a fish turn into light and disappear at the aquarium where her father works, but no one believes her. Years later, the mystery of the ghost of the sea unfolds before Ruka and a pair of mysterious young boys, Umi and Sora. Both boys were raised in the ocean by dugongs and can hear the same strange calls from the sea that Ruka does. After being suspended from her handball team, Ruka becomes caught up in the boys' world, which seems to ease her feelings of loneliness. This gentle tale of oceanic adventure reveals itself slowly, building upon the inherent mystery of the sea, as the kids become involved in the worldwide mystery of disappearing fish. Igarashi creates characters that are interesting on multiple levels and relatable for both young and adult readers. The art style is simplistic and almost delicate, but it's fitting for the overall feel of the story. Igarashi is an award-winning mangaka whose work is much in the mood of Miyazaki, and this nature-centered tale shows why. (June)
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*Starred Review* When she was little, Ruka saw a ghost at the aquarium—a fish that disappeared in a wave of light—but no one would believe her. Now that she is a teen, fish are disappearing from aquariums all over the world and mysterious children are found living in the oceans. Together with two such children, Umi and Sora, Ruka begins to wonder how all of the clues are connected. Just what is the sea trying to tell them? This oversize manga mostly sets the scene for the series, but that doesn’t make it any less striking. Ruka is a strong main character, caught between being a child and becoming a woman, and between a father who loves her but left her anyway and a mother who isn’t cut out for parenthood. Igarashi’s storytelling is quiet, thoughtful, and thought provoking, but it is his drawings that make this manga so amazing. Extremely detailed settings turn panels into mini-masterpieces, and the ocean scenes are so vivid that readers will feel that they are underwater themselves. VIZ’s handsome packaging does justice to Igarashi’s stunning work, making this a beautiful, must-have addition to any graphic-novel collection. Grades 7-12. --Snow Wildsmith