The English manga book you simply have to buy

Posted at 5:24 pm, July 1, 2014 in Art, Culture

We really only need to give you one reason why you should buy Him Her That – it’s been translated into English. But besides loving the fact that we can read the dialogue that goes along with author Wisut Ponnimit’s emotive illustrations, we’re intrigued by a few other details in the back story.

For one, Ponnimit is actually Thai yet he made his name here in Japan, winning the Japan Media Arts Award for outstanding manga in 2009, developing a cult following among Japanese fans, and working with renowned novelist Banana Yoshimoto, who penned the afterword in Him Her That, saying, ‘It’s as if magic coats the pages’. Another note at the end of the book, by translator Matthew Chozick, reveals that Ponnimit’s talents are just as enchanting during screenings of his anime, when he might play the piano while performing all the voices for his characters.

Mainly, though, Him Her That is the kind of work that will resonate with anyone who’s struggled in the throes of love – both the passionate and the everyday kind. It’s a collection of short stories with titles such as ‘Forgetting’, ‘Love Elevator’ and ‘Eye Sickness’, and it’ll leave you feeling like you’ve been let in on a wonderful secret world while at the same time feeling like it’s a world you’ve always known.

Here’s an animated vid of ‘Love Elevator’:

Him Her That (Awai Media) is available at selected bookstores and on Amazon (both in print, about ¥1,522, and for kindle, about ¥994).

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