Reading: Hoshi no Koe – The Voices of a Distant Star [Manga]

My copy and the gum I chewed while reading it.

Originally a haunting anime short film, Hoshi no Koe, or as it is called in the U.S. The Voices of a Distant Star, it was eventually adapted into a manga.  I’m a huge fan of the anime short film.  I watched and the story packed so much information and emotion that it felt that it last longer than the approximately 30 some minutes it really lasts.  The story had stuck with me.  I mean I watched it when my son was still in diapers… Now, he and I can trade shoes… It stuck!  But it also had left me with a big question.

This leads us to the end of last year, when I discovered there was a manga.  The reviews said that the question that lingered in my mind would be answered.  I wanted the manga.  I was broke.  Which is why I had to wait.  And when fate put it on the shelf of my local Half Price Books (totally love that store, for the record), I snatched it up.

Friday, I finally got around to reading it.  Having the emotions of the movie still with me, maybe I was primed to feel emotional at the end of every chapter.  I mean I almost cried every time.  And when I got to the end I did let loose one or two tears.

The reviews didn’t lie.  The question I wanted an answer to was answered.  And it was the answer I wanted.  (With Japanese stuff, you never know.)  The manga also added characters, gave the originals more depth, and so on.  And it all felt like it fit into the world of the film.  Like this could have been happening off screen or the wordless scenes had these words.  In my opinion, the additions were perfect fits that accentuated the emotion and themes.

It might be my fandom of the movie that twists my opinion of this manga as approving.  Then again, other fans might disagree with as well.  My advice is to watch the short film before reading the manga (like I did).  And if you want to know what it is about… It is about love, patience, loyalty, resolve, and how long you’re willing to wait for a single email/text.

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