Wandering Son Book 2
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- Discreet Packaging
Reading level - 13 to 16 years.
In the second volume of Shimura Takako's superb coming-of-age story, our transgendered protagonists, Shuichi and Yoshino, have entered the sixth grade. Shuichi spends a precious gift of cash from his grandmother on a special present for himself, a purchase that triggers a chain of events in which his sister Maho learns his secret, and Shuichi inadvertently steals the heart of a boy Maho is interested in.
The “woman” who showed so much interest in Yoshino becomes a mentor and friend to the two children. The kids go on a class trip that is a rite of passage Shuichi would rather pass up. Shuichi is called a “faggot” by another boy and the dramatic nature in which Saori comes to Shuichi’s defense leads the two to discover a shared fondness for Anne of Green Gables.
But despite his propensity to cry, Shuichi finds strength and courage he didn’t know he had.
"Wandering Son is a delightful, quiet manga about a girly boy and a boyish girl.... This is not your typical gender-bender manga playing a gender switch for laughs (and fanservice); it's a quiet, subtle story of a boy coming to terms with himself."
"Shimura balances a full plate in this story, all the while offering it with the kind of easy grace that makes the balance appear to be almost magical.... In Shimura s sympathetic hands, this manga is neither gag nor message heavy: both main characters, their peers, and their family members are credible and developed with enough depth that readers can think about them beyond the bounds of the book. ...[Wandering Son Vol. 1] belongs in every high school library, as well as in public collections that are accessible to both youth and adults."
"...Shimura Takako is a master at portraying subtle events in a slice of life story about adolescence that never feels didactic.... Like the storyline, Shimura s art is simple but nuanced.... As you d expect from Fantagraphics, the production quality for Wandering Son is excellent."
"What makes Wandering Son work is its slow-burn pace and calm atmosphere. It takes a delicate subject transgender children- and explores it slowly and carefully. Much like its characters, it moves at its own pace, easing the reader into the characters lives."