Young author Aki Fujino appeared poised to making it big in the world of publishing. Her debut title UTSUBORA was being pitched about to a number of editors and at least one person felt it was set to propel her into stardom. However, before she could ever have her book published, the young woman was found dead. Some believe it was a suicide, but those close to her feel there is something more sinister involved in this young talent’s death.
Aki’s death has become something straight out of a mystery. Much like the story behind UTSUBORA, there is something more to Aki, Sakura and their relationship with an author named Mizorogi than meets the eye. And it is possible that the only way to solve this mystery may be to uncover all their secrets.
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“Nakamura has created something tense and relentlessly worthwhile. It’s Mature rating will make it a hard sell in a lot of markets, but it’s a valuable book that merits the time readers will put into it. And that’s the great thing. When I first presumed Utsubora to be some sort of lip-service homage to Murakami, I was only seeing plot points and thriller tropes. I thought Nakamura’s book would merely be an amusing ride. Summer reading, something to lounge with poolside. But just as Murakami masks deeper examinations of culture and identity in his novels, so too does Nakamura.” —Good Ok Bad
“Utsubora: The Story of a Novelist is a visually striking puzzle of a story playing with parallelism…[It] is one of those works that can be read at different points in your life with different interpretations, given its narrative unreliability. This time, I found it about the disillusionment of our idols, and it spurred thoughts on what creativity really means.” —Comics Worth Reading
“If Satoshi Kon were alive today, he might have been interested in adapting Utsubora, a psychological mystery-drama that blurs the lines between fiction and reality… Asumiko Nakamura’s delicate art is perfect for the moments that take place in the characters’ heads (and between their bodies); the fusion between real-world elements and abstract lines creates a dreamy otherworld. Even the character designs make a statement about the story: Mizorogi is the old-school, traditionally dressed intellectual, while Fujino is almost unrealistically beautiful. Those little details—along with the big picture—result in a story that’s provocative in many ways.” —Anime News Network