In "Onward Towards Our Noble Deaths," manga artist and veteran Shigeru Mizuki brings the Pacific front of World War II to life with unflinching realism and a grotesque and sardonic humor.
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Filmmaker Mari Okada's own story, "From Truant to Anime Screen Writer," that of a child trapped in the prison of her hypersensitivity, is baldly and grimly told, a struggle against her demons of isolation, humiliation, and self-loathing.
Toriko Takarabe's "Heaven and Hell," a 2005 novel recently translated into English for the first time, provides the key to Takarabe's poetry and childhood, both of which were defined by Japan's brief colonial adventure in Manchuria.
"Clouds Above the Hill" portrays, in rich detail, the first generation to grow up in the Meiji Era and culminates in Japan's surprising victory in the Russo-Japanese War.