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Shiver: Junji Ito Selected Stories Hardcover – December 19, 2017
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About the Author
Junji Ito made his professional manga debut in 1987 and since then has gone on to be recognized as one of the greatest contemporary artists working in the horror genre. His titles include Tomie and Uzumaki, which have been adapted into live-action films; Gyo, which was adapted into an animated film; and Fragments of Horror, and all are available from VIZ Media. Ito’s influences include classic horror manga artists Kazuo Umezu and Hideshi Hino, as well as authors Yasutaka Tsutsui and H. P. Lovecraft.
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
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Used Record - This story is, unsurprisingly, about a record. It's a really good story and starts off the collection strongly. 4/5
Shiver - My favorite thing about this story is the designs for the cursed characters. There are some really gross ideas here, like what it'd be like to have a bunch of tiny holes all over your body. Like many of Ito's stories, the end is somewhat abrupt, but I still liked this one. 4/5
Fashion Model - Basically, a fashion model creeps a guy out. The premise isn't one of Ito's most original, but the execution is really strong. 4/5
Hanging Blimp - This is my favorite story in the entire collection. The premise is wildly original and I think this is hands down one of Ito's best works. 5/5
Marionette Mansion - This one asks a question: "do people control puppets or do puppets control people?" I enjoyed this story, but I felt that it was one of the weaker stories, due in part to the abrupt ending. 3/5
Painter - I'm not sure why they included this story, since it's a part of Ito's larger work, Tomie (which I highly recommend). Viz Media, who printed this, printed Tomie as a deluxe hardcover, which is very nice. I skipped rereading this, but I'd give Tomie as a whole a 5/5. Still, I don't think they should have included this.
The Long Dream - This story is about a man who has dreams that seem to get increasingly longer, lasting for years and years, despite only actually being a short period of time in reality. Again, the ending to this is kind of abrupt, but I like this one a whole lot. It reminds me of the Lovecraft story "Beyond the Wall of Sleep" in some ways. 5/5
Honored Ancestors - A girl lost her memory and has a boyfriend who's a creep. Cool idea, but I can't say I felt like the execution was all it could've been. 3/5
Greased - This is the single most disgusting thing I've read in a long time. That's all I've say. 4/5
Fashion Model: Cursed Frame - This story is an afterthought. It's around six pages long and isn't anything special. 3/5
Overall, this is a great read and is something I'd highly recommend to any fans of Ito's previous work and horror fans in general.
1. Used Record - A mythical record of a scat recording made from the afterlife has people killing to get their hands on it. An understated story with some classic Ito moments. (4/5)
2. Shiver - This is why I read Junji Ito. Very creepy art. A jade ornament has a curse and whoever has it will start getting big holes all over their body until they die. In the meantime, a mysterious doctor arrives to give you shots. (5/5)
3. Fashion Model - Some amateur filmmakers hire a ghoulish looking professional model and she turns out to not be human. Freaky. (4/5)
4. Hanging Blimp - Totally freaky story! The population of Tokyo is under dire threat of death. It started with an actress found to be an apparent hanging suicide. But then the heads start appearing. Giant heads floating in the sky with ropes hanging from them and when you see your own head ... it hangs you. My favourite so far. (5/5)
5. Marionette Mansion - A boy is unhappy because his family are travelling puppeteers living in a van and never staying anywhere more than a month or so. But one day, his father dies and now it's just him and his little sister. A couple of years later they reunite with their older brother but find out he's become obsessed with the marionettes he ran away from. The question pondered here is who controls who, the puppet or the puppeteer. (4/5)
6. The Long Dream - A dying girl in the hospital is terrified of dying. At the same time, a male patient is experiencing longer and longer dreams. Though his dreams last one night his experience of time grows from months to years to centuries and his body changes with the dream time. I loved this one! Ito's horror art is just so creepy! (5/5)
7. Honored Ancestors - Oh man, totally freaky. A girl loses her memory but when she sees the monstrosity that put her in shock in the first place she remembers everything. Very disturbing art! (5/5)
8. Greased Oil - OK, totally, totally gross and freaky! A family cursed by oil. If squirting pussy pimples gross you out, you may find this story very distressing! (4/5)
9. Bonus Story, Fashion Model: Cursed Frame - The ghoulish model from story #3 is back and she claims another victim. (4/5)
"Fragment of Horror", the first of the hard cover prints which featured brand new stories by Junji Ito...It was significantly smaller and thus had alot less content than "Shiver"...."Shiver" is more akin to the "Museum of Terror" collections and features an eclectic collection of various One Shot short stories that span Junji Ito's career with little rhyme of reason to why they were selected...This in itself is fine, as 9 of 10 of the stories in Shiver have not received an official American Printing that I am aware of and it's immensely enjoyable to see the progression of both the writing and the art though his work.
The reason I am rating this book down is because in the middle of the book it features a Tomie story which blatantly does not belong in a short story grab bag. Offensively enough, Viz already has rights to Tomie, and has created a Tomie Anthology which cheapens its addition to this collection further. He has so much really good early work that hasn't been printed for an English audience...I don't understand why it was necessary to add what I'm assuming is fluff to this anthology.
It was honestly disappointing and will make me weary about purchasing future Junji Ito publishing from VIZ.