Hell's Paradise (Jigokuraku) Volume 1 by Yuji Kaku - A Review

Hell's Paradise (Jigokuraku) Volume 1 is an adventure-fantasy story about a group of die-hard criminals and executioners sent by the Shogun to an island rumoured to possess an elixir that grants eternal life.

The story itself focuses on one of the criminals - Gabimaru the Hollow, who is a young assassin looking to return to his wife by procuring the elixir and obtaining pardon from the Shogun.

On the whole, Hell's Paradise (Jigokuraku) details the trials and the difficulties the Shogun's representatives face on the island.

The characters are believable and different in their motivations. For a book with so many characters, making each one unique is a difficult task and one was done with care in this book. I am also fascinated with the antagonists here. They are not the usual kind of monsters I find in fantasy tales. These particular beings are diverse, yet the same. They are like different branches of the same tree.

Some parts of the book drag on for a bit.

Most shounen manga fans will lap this work up with its bombastic action, character development and quirky power systems.

Many thanks to Diamond Books for a review copy.


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