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Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind, Vol. 1 Paperback – February 11, 2004
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"The Sea of Corruption was the new world .. an ecological system born in the polluted wastelands created by civilizations long past. Only the great insects could live amongst the giant fungi and the miasma they exhaled, and so the earth was slowly submerging beneath that decaying sea .. A thousand years had passed since the mammoth industrial civilizations of the past had diminished, and faded into the dark vastness of time. It was the closing of the Ceramic Era."
Set in the post-apocalyptic kingdom of Torumekia, it begins in the Valley of Wind, where our soon-to-be heroine Nausicaä is flying around in her mehve (a glider). She gets a telepathic message of pain and anger, and sets out to find its source. It took me awhile to get into the story, but when I did, I was hooked.
Nausicaä of the Valley of Wind is full of political intrigue, subtle psychological interactions, war strategy, and big explosions in the air. It also contains surprising episodes with the numinous, including encounters with an evil man both in ordinary physical reality and in non-ordinary reality, where he appears as dark energies; a surprising journey down the gullet of a giant bug leading to the Buddhist PureLand; and another trip to a trickster place where nothing is as it seems. Encounters with holy beings are here, as well as with political beings masquerading as holy. The best parts, though, are these:
1) Many of the strongest characters, including the protagonist heroine, are young women and girls.Read more ›
I had avoided this work for years, somehow getting it confused with fluff trash like Escaflowne or something. Not so. Recommended.
The first is a perfect bound edition. The second is the larger version here.
Both are excellent reads but the larger versions allows you to see the brilliance of Miyazaki's artwork (from a guy known more for animation). I have been told that the newer version is a more accurate translation but, not knowing Japanese, I can not confirm that. It is certainly an easier read because one does not have to squint.
In terms of story, Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind is a masterpiece. It blows Lord of the Rings out of the water. And this is coming from a person who hates almost the entire post-apocalyptic genre. I did think the ending came a bit suddenly and it did not necessarily wrap up every question I had.
However, it is still one of the best graphic novels you can get.
Nausicaa is a Princess in the Valley of Winds, located near the borders of the Sea of Corruption, a dense jungle of fungus that constantly releases a miasma of poisonous spores deadly to anyone but the giant insects who live there. The environment has been devastated by a global war, the Seven Days of Fire, that took place in the distant past, and now the few remaining human settlements vie for what little inhabitable land is left.
Nausicaa is a remarkable character in a story filled with remarkable characters. She is a pacifist in the truest sense of the word, not only rejecting violence and war as a means of solving problems, but having a calming effect on both the animals and people she encounters.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Great manga, as toward the movie. I dunno but maybe I gotten older, just not feeling it as when I watched the film back when I was a kid. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Edd
Miyazaki makes things so great. The concept of the manga is so great and the drawing is beautiful. I'm going to buy the whole series now.Published on September 24, 2013 by Sailorfly12
The fictional post-apocalyptic world of Miyazaki's Nausicaa is easily comparable to that of Middle Earth in terms of depth, history and grandeur. Read morePublished on August 23, 2013 by S.Crumpleton
It's great to find a comic that is not based on gratuitous violence and has strong environmental undertones. Read morePublished on June 9, 2013 by John Eyley
I am fairly late to Nausicaa, having only seen the movie about 10 years ago. I find it a compelling story about what humans do to destroy their environment, even in decline. Read morePublished on March 19, 2013 by L. Alexander
First let me state that I am reviewing the whole 7 volume series here.
Well, I am not the master of science fiction and fantasy books, but I have read two considered... Read more