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Maoh: Juvenile Remix, Vol. 1 Paperback – May 11, 2010

4.5 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews
Book 1 of 10 in the Maoh: Juvenile Remix Series

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 9 Up Ando is not popular enough to have a lot of friends, but not weak enough to be a frequent target of bullies. Instead he watches other kids get attacked and rationalizes not helping them because he does not want to become another victim. It turns out that Ando has a long-suppressed and long-forgotten ability, a kind of mental ventriloquism whereby he can make other people speak his thoughts out loud. First he uses this ability to help a girl who was groped by a man on the train but was too embarrassed to admit it. Soon Ando realizes that he might have to use this ability again, against a local hero, Inukai, who leads a vigilante group that seems to have ulterior motives. Both Ando and Inukai are highly unusual characters. Ando is an unlikely hero and will repeatedly lose the sympathy of readers every time he chooses not to help a victim. And while Inukai fits the visual stereotype of many manga characters (he is androgynously beautiful), he also has a remarkable charisma that inspires bullying victims to exact a horrifying revenge on their tormentors. Osuga's artwork is dynamic and powerful, with plenty of dramatic close-ups. In the end, Ando comes to some alarming conclusions about the beautiful and enigmatic Inukai, and these conclusions will leave readers waiting impatiently for the next volume in this series. Andrea Lipinski, New York Public Library
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Megumi Osuga made her debut with Tonpachi, which ran in Shonen Sunday R and had a short series in Shonen Super Sunday called Honou no Ana no Yomi. Kotaro Isaka was born in Japan in 1971. He had a career as a system engineer before writing his first work, Akuto-Tachi ga Meni Shimiru (Rogues Get in Your Eyes), which won a commendation for the Suntory Grand Prize of Mystery in 1996. Audubon no Inori (The Prayer of Audubon) won the Shincho Grand Prize of Mystery, Ahiru to Kamo no Coin Locker (A Duck and a Wild Duck in the Same Locker) won the Eiji Yoshihara Prize for best new author, and Shinigami no Seido (Accuracy of the Grim Reaper) won the Japanese Authors Association of Mystery Award, in the short story category.

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Product Details

  • Series: MAOH (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 200 pages
  • Publisher: VIZ Media LLC (May 11, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1421534282
  • ISBN-13: 978-1421534282
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 0.6 x 5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,142,505 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

By S. Duke on May 5, 2011
Format: Paperback
Maoh is another series I discovered with my Utopian Studies glasses on, something which I am quite pleased about. Of the three manga titles I picked up at MegaCon (Utopia's Avenger and Library Wars are the others), Maoh is the most complex and interesting, delving deep into the dark recesses of citizen-based justice, bullying, and self-identity, all within the first volume.

Maoh takes place in Nekota, a city that is rapidly modernizing, taking with it the world its residents have come to love. Gangs roam the streets, crime is on the rise, and greedy businessmen are trying to take everything they can while the city falls apart around them. But a vigilante group -- known as Grasshopper and led by the charming and beautiful Inukai -- has risen
up to restore "peace" and "prosperity" while opposing the New World's "progress." Caught in the middle is Ando, a high schooler who has done everything he can to conform and hide his real self. But Ando's discovery of the dark side of Grasshopper -- deadly beatings and psychotic murder attempts -- forces him to change, to think about who he is and who he wants to be in a city creeping closer to the edge of sanity...

If one were to focus on the strongest aspect of Osuga's adaptation of Isaka's story, it would have to be characterization. Ando is both a sympathetic character and an intriguing one. Seeing the changing city of Nekota through his eyes provides a unique, almost anti-heroic perspective through which the major developments of the book can be consumed (M.A.O.H., as it turns out, stands for "minor acts of heroism"). It is through that perspective that one begins to understand the intricacies of what is going on and its implications.
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Format: Paperback
"Maoh: Juvenile Remix" is an interesting comic in that it comes from popular novelist Kotaro Isaka (Golden Slumbers). Kotaro is known in Japan as "Haruki's child" after novelist Murakami Haruki (Hardboiled Wonderland and the End of the World). Like Murakami, Kotaro has that ability to bridge the gap between serious and popular literature, between complex social ideas and outlandish genre imagery.

Megumi Osuga has brilliantly adapted Kotaro's style and story for the manga "Maoh: Juvenile Remix," bringing together heady concepts of social justice, of corporations and politicians vs the rights of citizens, of the sins of progress, and the nobility of action vs inaction. All of these ideas have been presented in a comic that is also beautifully drawn and highly entertaining.

The story presents 11th grade student Ando, a perpetual bystander in life who harbors a secret. From a young age, he has had the psychic ability to put words in other people's mouths, to be a ventriloquist as he calls it. The power is innately passive; he cannot influence their thoughts or actions, only their words. Ando himself does not necessarily believe in his own power, and thinks that these instances might be more coincidence than anything else.

Ando lives in the fictional city of Nekota, a small town on the cusp of modernization, where the City Councilor Miyuki Yamamoto is attempting to bring in corporate money with the creation of a new Urban Center.
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Format: Paperback
Reason for Reading: I was drawn to the urban fantasy angle of the plot.

Ando, a high school student, has the ability to make others say what he is thinking. He used this power as a child, but stopped when he told about it and was ridiculed. Now he is discovering he still has the power and putting it to good use. At the same time a group of vigilantes called the "Grasshoppers" has become very popular as they protect citizens from crime and the greedy businessmen who want to turn the area into a big city metropolis of shopping malls. They have a very charismatic leader who seems to hold a spell over all who meet with him, but Ando has seen him at his worst and starts to follow him to find out what he's really up to and how his group's numbers are increasing so fast. The man may seem angelic to all who follow him but Ando wonders if he might actually be a devil with ulterior motives.

I found this story very intriguing. Ando and his brother are orphans so they are able to come and go as they please. All the art is very detailed with none of the usual manga gimmicks except in the character of the Grasshopper leader who is the stylized man who looks like a woman. This makes his character stand out right away and adds to his charisma. There are also a few s*xually suggestive representations of females which are obviously meant to appeal to the male readers. As Ando tries to help a school mate who is always picked on by bullies he finds the Grasshoppers have got to him at some point too, altering his character, making Ando very leery of this group and the leader in particular. There is quite a bit of violence but not excessive. Then there are some downright creepy scenes which just added to keeping me glued to this story.
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