Book Review: HIBAKUSHA by Thilde Barboni

Japan in 1945.



Ludwig has never been a soldier. A childhood injury left him lame in one leg, which has allowed him to largely sit out the war on the sidelines, as a translator. Fleeing his passionless marriage, he accepts an assignment in Japan, allowing him to return to the land of his youth. But the year is 1945. It is not a good time to be Japanese, or German… much less stationed in Hiroshima. Ludwig is tempted by love and, in furtively tampering with his translations of classified documents, by the chance to do something heroic. But none of that will save him…



Title: Hibakusha

Author: Thilde Barboni, Olivier Cinna

Publication: September 19, 2018 by Europe Comics

Genre: Graphic Novel, Historical Fiction

Target audience: Adult

Goodreads | Amazon US | Amazon UK*

I received a free copy of this book in return for an honest review.

*As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Rating: 🌵🌵

What draws me to graphic novels is the art.

It is the art that makes me decide if I want to read the graphic novel, not the story line. Sure, it should at least awaken a little interest, but it is not the most important detail. If I wanted to read a particular story, I’d read a novel, not a comic. A novel is longer, usually more detailed and not finished as quickly.

But sometimes, just sometimes, imagination is not enough anymore, and we wish to see.
Graphic novels combine books and art, and I love it.

The artwork in Hibakusha is truly beautiful, especially together with the Japanese setting. But it was not enough for more than 2 stars.

Remember when a few seconds ago I said that the story line is not the most important detail?

Ha ha, I was wrong.

I mean, yeah, the art was amazing and I’d probably pin a few panels to my walls and whatnot, but as a book itself, I wouldn’t want to read it again.

It’s not the plot in general that is bothering me, that could’ve been a nice love story set in tragic times, but damn….

….That was not a love story, that was a fucking love affair. And I don’t really like reading about husbands cheating on their wives without even sparing them a thought. It wasn’t even depicted as wrong. Just… a regular love story.

Because, yeah, cheating on your partner should be normal….

Whatever. This just wasn’t my thing.

(Also, I didn’t expect the very explicit content of sexual nature. Next time, please warn a girl. Geez.)

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