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Besides the requisite recently deceased soul and guardian angel, “Colorful,” Eto Mori’s English-language debut released on July 20 from Counterpoint Press, offers a unique take on the reincarnation trope.

Banned from the cycle of rebirth because of a “grave error” in his previous life, the weary nameless narrator rejects the angel Prapura’s offer to redeem himself by “homestaying” in a live body at first. Although he can’t remember his past life, he has no energy for living again. But he’s the winner of a spiritual lottery, which randomly bestows second chances on souls with past-life errors and, as Prapura points out, “The boss’s decisions are final.”

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