Battle Royale, Book 1

by Koushun Takami, Masayuki Taguchi | Graphic Novels |
ISBN: 9781591823148 Global Overview for this book
Registered by AKSarah of Fairbanks, Alaska USA on 5/26/2011
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4 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by AKSarah from Fairbanks, Alaska USA on Thursday, May 26, 2011
From Forget-Me-Not Used Books.

Journal Entry 2 by AKSarah at Fairbanks, Alaska USA on Friday, May 27, 2011
This is my first Manga and I'm glad that the book included a "how to read manga" page.

The premise of the story is a TV show called "The Program" in which 9th graders are taken to an island, given weapons, and pitted against each other in a fight to the death. The last one standing is declared the winner. Pretty sick concept, but intriguing. I picked this up because it was referenced in a review of a book that I adored, Zombies and S**t by Carlton Mellick III.

This first volume sets up the game and the backstory of some of the characters.

Very graphic sex and violence, but not totally without purpose. Some tragic moments, as well as some comic ones. I enjoyed this volume and am looking forward to the next!

Journal Entry 3 by AKSarah at Fairbanks, Alaska USA on Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Released 10 yrs ago (7/13/2011 UTC) at Fairbanks, Alaska USA


Mailed to GoryDetails to kick off my Graphic Novel/Manga bookbox.

Journal Entry 4 by wingGoryDetailswing at Nashua, New Hampshire USA on Thursday, August 4, 2011
I chose this book from AKSarah's manga/graphic-novel bookbox along with Volume Two and Volume Three; it looks like a dark, nihilistic series, reminding me in some ways of The Drifting Classroom (though it's an interesting question whether a deliberate battle-of-attrition is more evil than an accidental one). The Y/A "Hunger Games" series sounds as though it has a very similar premise, too. [The TV Tropes page has a lot of information about the story - including the tidbit that it was originally a novel, and that there's a film as well.]

Oh, and I love the bookplate label, "I Spy a Free Book", with a figure peering through a window - very cute!

Later: Alas, these poor books got trapped in one of my "toss all books into boxes to make room for company" binges, and only just resurfaced. The story opens with a TV broadcast in which the winner of the last battle appears - looking so horrifying that it serves as a very good warning about what the rest of the story will be like. Then we meet some of the students in this year's class, getting to know them a bit before the kidnapping takes place (talk about instilling a fear of school buses). And the unctuously evil "host" who informs the students of the rules of their next few days (or hours, or minutes...) of existence is so exceedingly nasty that it's hard to take. [There's a flashback to his brutal rape of the schoolteacher, just one of many disturbing scenes, and we haven't even begun the contest yet.]

Some of the students are more savvy than others as to the real rules of the contest, but even the most skilled and knowledgeable ones are up against a nightmarish trial. The story does a good job - too good, perhaps - of letting us get to know these kids, watching them struggling to cope with the situation, form alliances, decide who to trust, save those closest to them, all in a scenario set up for failure...

By the end of the first volume the kill-rate is already quite high; how could this series possibly sustain the shock-factor?

[I watched the 2000 live-action film and found it entertaining. In some ways I found it easier to take than the manga, with its over-the-top gruesomeness, but on the other hand, watching teenagers conspiring to kill each other in live-action might be more disturbing for some than watching it in ink on a page...]

Journal Entry 5 by wingGoryDetailswing at Nashua, New Hampshire USA on Thursday, October 4, 2012

Released 9 yrs ago (10/4/2012 UTC) at Nashua, New Hampshire USA


I'm putting this book into AKSarah's graphic novel/manga bookbox, which will be on its way to BCer quietorchid in Minnesota soon. Hope someone enjoys the book!

Journal Entry 6 by quietorchid at Saint Paul, Minnesota USA on Wednesday, October 10, 2012
Very Difficult. Volume 1 sets up the series and is very graphic, I had read vol 2, which has more pathos in it. The drawings are great, involving, and the story line is gripping. I'm reserving judgement until I read more of them.

My plan is to send this off to South Dakota, where I've had an interesting discussion of the Hunger Games with the intended receipient.

Journal Entry 7 by quietorchid at Saint Paul, Minnesota USA on Thursday, October 11, 2012

Released 9 yrs ago (10/11/2012 UTC) at Saint Paul, Minnesota USA


Sending off to South Dakota as a care package!

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Journal Entry 8 by SDnativeNYCer at Brookings, South Dakota USA on Sunday, October 14, 2012
Received the book (with BR 2 and BR 3) yesterday (Saturday, Oct. 13 2012) in Brookings, SD via US mail from quietorchid. She and I had discussed "The Hunger Games" trilogy (which I enjoyed) and she thought I would like the BR series also.

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