The River Shinano 2 & 3 of Kamimura and Okazaki | Review


Published on Jul 30, 2019


Yukie, the daughter of a rich landowner of a rural region of Japan is extremely poor, has found love as a teenager, with her nearly the same age as Tatsukichi and then a love that is more mature with her professor, Translation, with whom he lived a love that is taboo, that blows away the conventions of the time and the rigidity of japanese society. But Yukie he needs to face the memory that haunts, his mother; and here it is, part of his research, returning to the places of his childhood.

After the first appreciable volume, continues the story of the making of this girl is fiery and also a slave of his desires, that arises from the research of the construction of a new relationship with his parents: a father who now does not hide his innermost desires, and a mother that is fled many years before, and she believed now dead.

The relationship with the mother is a major theme of the whole story of Yukie, because he believes to have inherited her characteristics and the tragic that have characterized his relationship with the men in her life: infidelity, betrayal and adultery; characteristics that he believes will be inherited also by his descendants. However, this awareness does not will help to straighten out his life; despite his attempts to rebuild their existence and avoid the same mistakes, Yukie shows that his fate is marked by the legacy he received from his mother, a legacy that may ultimately be his condemnation.

As you can understand, the story begins to be deeply melancholic and sad, as the loves of adolescents have left the place to an adult love, but to this are always imperfect, and also because of its protagonists: if Yukie is always a balance between a romantic love and a carnal, it is also true that the men that he meets in his sentimental journey will always prove inadequate, if not cowardly, to meet what Yukie needs. A journey, therefore, without solution of continuity, that seems not to give peace to the protagonist.

From the point of view of the stroke, Kamimura offers a story masterfully designed, which is characterized not only by a stretch delicate, but also for the construction of tables which are enriched with full-page images, shooting at a bird's eye view and camera angles.

In this work, therefore, seem to be the fulfillment of the themes that have always accompanied the stories of this golden couple of authors, such as femininity, incest, and a lack of communication between a man and a woman, enriched by a sub-graph that emphasizes even more the centrality of the female characters in the evolve stories.

The package proposed by Coconino Press – Fandango is a hardback very solid addition to the manga series also presents, in volume two, a study of Paul, The Brand, which traces the collaborations between the two authors, and, in volume three, a post-faction by Jiro Taniguchi, which considers The river Shinano her favorite story from among those made by these authors.

The translation is once again curated by Paul Brand, a great expert and passionate of the figure of Kamimura Kazuo, so she has curated two exhibitions about him at Ragusa in The world of eros, 2014) and later also to Lucca (The simplicity of beauty and 2016).

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