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Baron: The Cat Returns

Review

Baron: The Cat Returns

As
any cat lover will tell you, felines operate under their own logic.
We'll never understand why they do the things they do --- racing
around as if chased by an invisible enemy, attacking pieces of
lint. In BARON: THE CAT RETURNS, an ordinary schoolgirl discovers
that cats really do come from their own world when she rescues a
feline prince from an oncoming truck. The king of cats wants to
reward Haru for her kindness, but the cats' idea of thanks (in
addition to the cases of cat food that mysteriously appear at her
house) is to make her the prince's bride! Only the mysterious
Baron, a toy cat come to life, can rescue her from her overly
enthusiastic new friends. Haru's adventure leads her into the land
of cats and reunites her with a beloved former pet, but Haru must
learn to let go of her old friend if she's to escape turning into a
cat forever.


Everything about BARON is stellar: art, storytelling and
translation. Fans of anime may recognize this manga as the
inspiration for the anime The Cat Returns. BARON is part of
Viz's Studio Ghibli library, which includes manga adaptations of
popular Studio Ghibli anime. Unlike these other titles, which are
made up of movie stills, BARON was meant to be read in comic form.
The drawing, layout and pacing all work, and Haru's dramatic escape
from the land of cats on a ladder of birds is particularly
exquisite. Like all the best children's stories, this funny and
creepy fairy tale won't just appeal to children. It's unclear
whether further volumes will follow, but even on its own BARON: THE
CAT RETURNS is a must-buy.


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Reviewed by Jen Webb on October 18, 2011

Baron: The Cat Returns
by Aoi Hiiragi

  • Publication Date: April 13, 2005
  • Genres: Manga
  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: VIZ Media LLC
  • ISBN-10: 1591169569
  • ISBN-13: 9781591169567