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Planetes, Book 1 Paperback – October 7, 2003

4.7 out of 5 stars 29 customer reviews
Book 1 of 5 in the Planetes Series

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The latest book club pick from Oprah
"The Underground Railroad" by Colson Whitehead is a magnificent novel chronicling a young slave's adventures as she makes a desperate bid for freedom in the antebellum South. See more

Product Details

  • Series: Planetes (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: TokyoPop (October 7, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1591822629
  • ISBN-13: 978-1591822622
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 5 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,325,175 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Peter Oksman on October 10, 2003
Format: Paperback
As a 25 year old, and a voracious reader of manga, I find that most manga today is aimed at teenagers and kids, so it is always a pleasant surprise to find a story aimed at someone my age. Planetes (that's the correct spelling)reminds me of the stories of Arthur C. Clarke - this is intelligent science fiction with a humanistic bend, combining hard science, personal stories of loss and yearning, and the wonder at the vastness of the cosmos. Don't get the impression that it is all bleak though - the author has a good sence of humor and some stories are actually quite funny, but as with Cowboy Bebop, the humor is mixed with pathos. Planetes follows Hachimaki, who along with co-workers Yuri and Fee works as a space "garbage man", getting rid of dead sattelites, discarded fuel tanks and other junk that clutters earth orbit. It does not have an overarching plot but instead consists of seperate stories about the life and adventures of all 3 of them (although Hachimaki is the main hero).
This book is very strongly recommended - I read it yesterday in one sitting, and I still can't stop thinking about it. I just hope that it sells well, so that Tokyopop can bring more stories like this over here.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Dark Horse brings back Makoto Yukimura's masterpiece Planetes to print in the best way imaginable. It's a release made with love and respect, and you can tell.
Large scale book. Inclusion of all colored pages. Gorgeous cover design.
I cannot imagine a better way to experience one of the best hard sci-fi stories out there.
Eagerly anticipating the second volume.
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Format: Paperback
This book is amazing for a number of reasons. First, it is unique among space manga in being rather realistic: The physics works, for the most part, and the technology and social arrangements seem to stem logically from the current situation.
But on the other hand, this book avoids the pitfall that so much hard sci-fi falls prey to: It doesn't spend all its time describing the technology and such to the detrement of characters and plot. In fact, the realism of the science and the technology is matched and even maybe exceeded by the realism of the characters. Yukimura's amazing ability to balance scientific realism with humanistic realism brings to mind Heinlein or Clarke, and definitely earns the name "graphic novel" in a way that manga does not always achieve.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Planetes Omnibus Volume 1 is the first half of the Planetes story. A story written as one of the most scientifically grounded science fiction stories in recent memory, it speaks of characters working in space. Each character has their own motivations and goals, suffer their own setbacks and losses, and stare into that void of space and contemplate just what humanity needs to secure to make it in that vacuum.

Storywise, I'm a big fan of Planetes. I read the full story a long time ago, and this new omnibus does exactly what it says by showing the first half of the story. While we don't have some of the more exciting moments that were present in the second half of planetes, we do get the amazing story of Hachimaki as he attempts to reach as far as he can in the world.

The book itself seems pretty well made. The stories have the first few pages illustrated in color, which is a rather unique way of putting markers between chapters. its not hard to flip at random, find some color pages that draw your eyes, and hop into a certain section of the story.

As to flipping through, I'll say that the spine seems pretty well made. I have doubts about it lasting forever, but its held up admirably during my flipping and pulling to better look at details. My only complaint would be that a small amount of book covering on the outer spine has started scratching off, but that's to be expected from any book handled roughly.

Planetes is a great story, and this book does a phenomenal job presenting it. My only real concern is that rough handling may not keep the book together for long, and that the second half of this omnibus isn't already out!
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Format: Paperback
Having just read the first and second volumes of the series I find myself truly...awed. This manga is truly stunning with it's developed characters, ideas, humor, drawings and overall concept. I have never really contemplated what the emotional side of space is until I read this. This series will move you and make you think of what space will really be like when humans extend even farther into the void. I am 13 year who as most people agree, is very mature for his age and has a remarkable patience. This is not a book for those who only like fast-paced action as seen in other manga. However, if you enjoy seriousiness and have a good patience then this is a great manga series for you.
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Format: Paperback
I'd overall give this a 3.5 stars...

And this short review is more for the whole 5-manga series and not just for the first volume, but if you are thinking of geting the first one, you might want to know what you are in for.

I agree with what several of the others have said in Planetes' favor. The characters are interesting, the "realistic sci-fi" aspect is quite good, and the overall direction or plot pull the reader in.

This lasts through the first two or three books. The last two seemed to me at least to lose the pulse of the earlier volumes. Maybe it is the case that all manga/anime must devolve into "emo," but that doesn't mean I have to like it. I appreciated the psychological aspects to the storytelling, and their importance to the tale's overall theme...but, well, Planetes emphasized this to excess. What began as a complicated human story ended up as a facile lesson. I wouldn't want to ruin it for anyone, so I won't disclose any more of the conclusion (if it could be called that).

Great first book, great 2nd, and maybe 3rd...weaker 4th and a disappointing 5th (or 4.part 2...as it is called)
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