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Translucent, Volume 1

Review

Translucent, Volume 1

Shizuka is shy, retiring and afraid no one will notice her. Her fear is valid. Shizuka suffers from Translucent Syndrome and is literally becoming invisible. Classmate Tadami has fallen in love with Shizuka, and he works hard to reassure her that he will never forget what she looks like, who she is and that she has a place in the world. It's a case of “the grass is always greener,” though, when the two meet fellow classmate Okouchi, who is cursed with being too popular and noticed by everyone.

Each chapter works as a short story --- some focusing on Shizuka, others on the people around her --- but each story focuses on how every person, no matter how she may perceive herself, has value. The book never feels preachy or manipulative; instead, the lessons, if you want to call them that, develop naturally within the story, staying away from tear-jerk scenarios or heavy-handed morals.

The sweetness of Shizuka, the bossiness of Okouchi and the quirkiness of Tadami all ring true, giving their worry over Shizuka's condition added weight. The artwork is much stiffer and less flowery than in typical shojo manga, and the lack of hot guys and impossibly beautiful girls made it easier to focus on the quiet loveliness of the story. Highly recommended for middle schoolers and teens.

Reviewed by Eva Volin on August 7, 2007

Translucent, Volume 1
by Kazuhiro Okamoto

  • Publication Date: August 7, 2007
  • Genres: Manga
  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Dark Horse
  • ISBN-10: 1593076479
  • ISBN-13: 9781593076474