Note:At the time of writing I have only read the first two volumes of this series.
So a Couple of days ago I heard about the manga, soon to be movie “Koe No Katachi” or in English: “A Silent Voice” it’s a manga, which In no uncertain terms I’ve fallen in love with. Its message about the effects of bullying and its narrative about the journey to forgiveness, both of others and ones own self. further cementing the compelling and engrossing story of “A Silent Voice”.
The story features around the two main characters Shoya Ishida a former trouble-maker and bully, turned social outcast, and Shoko Nishimiya a deaf girl, who 5 years prior to the story was the victim of Shoya’s Bullying to the point of having to leave the school they were in together. The story is primarily about Shoya’s attempt to atone and seek redemption for how he treated Shoko in the past, after learning that she had been doing things like removing hateful graffiti from his desk or returning shoes that his former friends had left. The story also shows Shoya’s own journey to find something worth living for and re-learning to trust people after isolating himself after becoming ostracized and being made the scapegoat for the other members of his classes mistreatment of Shoko.
So in terms of setting it doesn’t take the typical fantastical or dramatic setting that a lot of shōnen manga take. It keeps its roots in a simple and realistic setting that could be any small town and this allows for the characters and their growth to take center stage as opposed to a grandiose setting requiring a lot of lore or exposition for the story to make sense.
The art for the manga is heavily centered around the characters as well taking an approach that is more in line with Tite Kubo’s(Author of Bleach) philosophy of using a minimalist feel to the backgrounds to allow for the characters dialogue and actions to speak , which in a character-centric story like this only makes sense. however that doesn’t translate to a lack of detail and expressiveness its quite the contrary the art style, it’s quite the contrary in fact. Details like having Shoya surrounded by characters with “x”‘s over their faces to his isolation, loneliness and distrust for those around him, and a panel where Shoko angrily uses sign language at her sister who holds a grudge against Shoya for his past bullying
of her sister. Panels like these are great example of allowing the characters to speak and express their emotions without words
overall I really recommend this story to people
who are wanting to dip their toes in the ocean that is anime and manga and full on fans of the medium. The story and is simple and pacing works well enough for new fans, but the storyand charicter development has enough depth and nuance that more seasoned fans wont be left wanting.
So check it out get it from your local book store, amazon or whatever there’s also the option to read the series online though crunchyroll and other site for reading manga. there’s also a movie coming out (trailer down bellow) which has been produced by the renowned kyoto animation studio so keep an eye out at your local cinema that screens international films for me its the “Glasgow Film Theater” if you’re not near Glasgow, it’s somewhere else.
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