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Ristorante Paradiso Paperback – March 16, 2010
This month's Book With Buzz: "Little Fires Everywhere" by Celeste Ng
From the bestselling author of Everything I Never Told You, a riveting novel that traces the intertwined fates of the picture - perfect Richardson family and the enigmatic mother and daughter who upend their lives. See more
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From Publishers Weekly
Telling the story of Nicoletta, a young girl seeking out the mother who left her as a child, Ristorante Paradiso exemplifies the best and worst elements of the slice-of-life genre. The protagonist's mother, Olga, is spirited off to Rome to marry her dream man, Lorenzo, whom she believes would have refused her had she revealed the existence of her child. Fifteen years later, the adult Nicoletta plans to expose her mother by telling Lorenzo the truth. However, it would be a mistake to think that Ono is actually interested in such weighty issues as child abandonment and familial loyalty. Instead, readers are in for a shallow soap opera focused on curiously identical-looking waiters and the women who pine for them. Nicoletta herself at the end of the story sums up the unbelievably cheap development and resolution of the family drama with one perfect descriptor: anticlimactic. On the plus side, for those who can get over the lack of depth and realism, the story offers cute subplots for anyone who has imagined what sort of drama may await in the back rooms of Italian restaurants. (Mar.)
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About the Author
Natsume Ono made her professional debut in 2003 with the webcomic La Quinta Camera. Her next works, not simple and Ristorante Paradiso, met with both critical and popular acclaim. Her current series House of Five Leaves (Saraiya Goyou) is running in IKKI magazine, and Gente (a continuation of Ristorante Paradiso) appears in Erotics F magazine.
Top customer reviews
The art is very unique; it's not bad per say but it's not absolutely beautiful. I believe it is drawn this way to make the story flow better. I haven't really decided if I like the art or not (haha).
Overall it's a nice short one-shot that makes an excellent read for a rainy day.
By now, you are probably familiar with the basic plot and premise of this manga from the synopsis and the rest of the reviews. So no need to really go into that. This is a standalone manga (no other volumes) which also did give rise to the "Gente" sidestory series. For me, the story was definitely touching and packed with tons of life lessons to learn. Tons of amusing characters as well. But my main issue with this particular manga was that it felt like it was cramming in too much for the amount of pages used. except for a very few, we really didn't get to delve too deeply into some of the other characters, the pacing sometimes felt rushed, and the resolution didn't really satisfy (it's a complete one tho and doesn't leave you hanging...it was just lackluster in my opinion). Now, I do love standalone mangas, too...and actually have an anthology of them...this one just didn't feel as developed and well executed. That said, the story is a very real and relatable story for many, and with tons of good lessons to glean from it.
The artwork is also not the standard commercial manga style, which ironically helps this manga considering it takes place in Italy, not Japan. The cover is a good representation of it...so you can decide if it's your style or not. It does make character age much easier to guess tho haha...and that is somewhat important to the happenings in it.
ALL IN ALL:
It's a good and solid manga...but I feel I will forget it soon enough. Didn't really have any themes, ideas, story plot, ect. that I felt will stay with me in the future. Nor did I really end up sympathizing or "investing" into any of the characters. For me, I'd say it's a decent filler while waiting on the next volume of your favorite series.