Saturday, March 3, 2012

57. The Secret World of Arrietty, Vol. 1

The Secret World of Arrietty (Film Comic) by Studio Ghibli (US) - (Canada)
Volume 1 of 2

Pages: 253
Ages: 8+
Finished: Feb. 19, 2012
First Published: 2010 Japan (Feb. 7, 2012 US)
Publisher: viz media
Genre: children, manga, fantasy
Rating: 4/5


First sentence: "It's funny how you wake up each day and never really know if it will be one that will change your life forever."


Publisher's Summary: "Arrietty isn’t your ordinary fourteen-year-old girl—she is small enough to make her home under the floorboards of a typical house. Everything she and her family have they've borrowed or made from things they've borrowed--and only a little at a time, so the ladies of the house won't notice. A boy named Shawn discovers Arrietty, and before long a friendship begins to blossom. Based on the classic novel by Mary Norton, The Secret World of Arrietty is a delight for all ages."


Acquired: Received a review copy from Simon & Schuster Canada.

Reason for Reading:   The Borrowers is my 2nd favourite "little people" book. (Mistress Masham's Repose is my first) As soon as I saw the name Arrietty in the title I knew the book would have something to do with the Borrowers and had to read it.

This is the film adaptation manga of the Japanese anime film produced by Studio Ghibli (most internationally famous for "Howl's Moving Castle").  The film was released in an English version this past Feb. (2012) two years after its Japanese release.  It is a great quasi-adaptation of Mary Norton's "The Borrowers".  Volume 1 goes up to the point where the boy has discovered Arrietty and her parents have decided they will have to move now for safety's sake.  The anime graphics straight from the film, are beautiful and the book is a joy to both behold and read.  There are a lot of action/wordless frames which make the book suitable for all levels of readers and the story will be enjoyed by all fans of "The Borrowers".  There is a very slight Japanese flavour to the story but only in a few little details which just adds a neat addition to the story.  One thing I particularly liked was that Arrietty's father, Pod, is not the usual bumbling chubby fool.  In this adaptation, he is a broad shouldered he-man type of guy.  A man of few words but obviously the take-charge "man of the house."  It is hardly necessary to have read The Borrowers first as the story is all here, but I think this new presentation will especially delight readers of the original classic.

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