Catalogue


Ōoku : the inner chambers /
by Fumi Yoshinaga ; [translation & adaptation, Akemi Wegmüller].
edition
Viz signature ed.
imprint
San Francisco, CA : Viz Media, 2009-
description
v. : ill. ; 22 cm.
ISBN
1421527472 (v. 1), 9781421527475 (v. 1)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
uniform title
imprint
San Francisco, CA : Viz Media, 2009-
isbn
1421527472 (v. 1)
9781421527475 (v. 1)
general note
"Parental advisory, explicit content"--Cover.
Reads manga-style, right to left and back to front.
abstract
"In Edo period Japan, a strange new disease called the Red Pox has begun to prey on the country's men. Within eighty years of the first outbreak, the male population has fallen by seventy-five percent. Women have taken on all the roles traditionally granted to men, even that of the Shogun. The men, precious providers of life, are carefully protected. And the most beautiful of the men are sent to serve in the Shogun's Inner Chamber"--P. [4] of cover.
language note
Translated from the Japanese.
catalogue key
8208315
target audience
Rated M for mature.
A Look Inside
Awards
This item was nominated for the following awards:
James Tiptree Jr. Award, USA, 2009 : Won
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Publishers Weekly on 2009-08-31:
The Edo period of an alternate Japan is ruled entirely by women in this manga. A mysterious plague has killed three out of four boys for generations, so men are carefully guarded and sheltered, while women go about the business of daily life. The Ooku was an area of Edo Castle reserved for the shogun's concubines and female relatives; here the shogun is a woman and the Ooku is entirely male. One of the few serious works of alternate history in contemporary manga, Ooku explores the relationship between gender and culture in subtle and unexpected ways. It begins tightly focused on a single heroic character and slowly pans out from there, embracing first the court intrigue of the Ooku, then the new Shogun and Japan as a whole and finally the outside world, unaware and free of the plague. Yoshinaga is the acclaimed creator of Antique Bakery, which has been made into both a Japanese television series and a smash hit Korean movie. Not as visually busy as many historical works, Ooku's art has a spare, elegant aesthetic that shines with carefully chosen detail. Yoshinaga's work is wry and stately by turns, doing full justice to the book's rich tapestry of stories. (Aug.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Appeared in Library Journal on 2009-11-15:
Re-envisioning Japan's Tokugawa past, Yoshinaga uses a premise we've seen in Y: The Last Man and James Tiptree Jr.'s sf short story, "Houston, Houston, Do You Read?" As a mysterious disease kills off 80 percent of the males, women have taken control of society, "preserving" men as sperm donors. Only rich women can afford to marry. Poor women wanting children are forced to purchase sex. And only the now-female shogun can dally in the Ooku-secluded quarters where elite male concubines await their liege's pleasure. Because he is too low class to marry his beloved Nobu, handsome swordsman Yunoshin enters the Ooku, where he meets the eighth and newest shogun, Yoshimune. Yoshimune's sexual appetite is exceeded only by her wisdom, a conflation of traits apparently new to the shogunate, and instead of exploiting him, she unexpectedly and expertly solves Yunoshin's dilemma. VERDICT Yoshinaga (Antique Bakery) clearly enjoys ringing the changes on gender tropes while exercising her considerable plotting skills. With four volumes published in Japan and a projected ten more on the way, this beautifully drawn series has won several Japanese awards and an Eisner nomination. Recommended for adult collections.-M.C. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Reviews
Review Quotes
"A literary triumph." Library Journal(Starred Review)
"Gabriel shares an estimable gift for memoir and introspection in this forceful account? Raw grace is in evidence here as Gabriel lives to speak to realities to which all too many women can relate." Booklist(Starred Review)
"Gabriel tells her story in a bell-clear voice... her fury at curcumstance is aching and voluminous." Kirkus Reviews
"Gabriel writes with stunning precision. Her fear and bravery is palpable"Robin Romm, author ofThe Mercy Papers
"In this fiercely emotional memoir, Gabriel blends the story of her personal medical odyssey with the history of the disease."MORE Magazine
"To say thatEating Pomegranatesis beautifully written is to understate: it has a psalmic quality.' --The Independent(U.K.)
"Vivid and tense, at once raw and stylish,Eating Pomegranatesbrings the reader very close--for some readers unbearably close--to reality . . . devastatingly intimate."John Carey, author ofWhat Good Are the Arts?
"Irreverent and tremendously moving? Gabriel handles heartbreaking issues frankly and with grace in this vigorously composed memoir." Publishers Weekly
"Remarkable, uncompromising and full of intelligence and insight Gabriel has done a great service in probing social attitudes and in describing the intricate, often unspoken negotiations between the sick and the well." ?Hilary Mantel, Booker Prize-winning author ofWolf Hall
This item was reviewed in:
Publishers Weekly, August 2009
Library Journal, November 2009
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Summaries
Main Description
R to L (Japanese Style). In Edo period Japan, a strange new disease called the Red Pox has begun to prey on the country's men. Within eighty years of the first outbreak, the male population has fallen by seventy-five percent. Women have taken on all the roles traditionally granted to men, even that of the Shogun. The men, precious providers of life, are carefully protected. And the most beautiful of the men are sent to serve in the Shogun's Inner Chamber...
Main Description
"First published in Japan in 2005 by Hakusensha, Inc., Tokyo."--Colophon.
Main Description
In Edo period Japan, a strange new disease called the Redface Pox has begun to prey on the country's men. Within eighty years of the first outbreak, the male population has fallen by seventy-five percent. Women have taken on all the roles traditionally granted to men, even that of the shogun. The men, precious providers of life, are carefully protected. And the most beautiful of the men are sent to serve in the shogun's Inner Chamber...

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