Arata the Legend: Volume 19 manga review
By Leroy Douresseaux
September 11, 2014 - 11:22

Viz Media
Writer(s): Yuu Watase, JN Productions, Lance Caselman
Penciller(s): Yuu Watase
Letterer(s): Rina Mapa
ISBN: 978-1-4215-6506-4
$9.99 U.S., $12.99 CAN, £6.99 UK, 192pp, B&W, paperback
Rating: T (Teen)

Arata The Legend Volume 19 cover image is courtesy of

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Rated “T” for “Teen”

Arata Hinohara is a Japanese high school freshmen living in the modern world.  Then, he travels to another dimension and ends up in Amawakuni, a world where humans and gods coexist.  Arata switches places with an Amawakuni boy who is also named Arata (known as Arata of the Hime).  Hinohara is chosen to wield a Hayagami (a god in sword form) named Tsukuyo so that he can save Princess Kikuri.  Arata lives on Earth, while Arata Hinohara goes on a life-changing journey.

Arata Hinohara and his friends:  Kotoha, Mikusa, Yataka, Kannagi, and Yanagi prepare to face Isora.  He is another of the Six Sho, the group that is determined to destroy Princess Kikuri.  Isora wields the power of the written word and seems impossible to defeat after he steals Hinohara's ability to speak.

As Arata: The Legend, Vol. 19 (Chapters 178 to 187) opens, Isora offers Hinohara a deal.  He must answer the question:  Is Masato Kadowaki his friend or his enemy?  Once upon a time, Kadowaki was Hinohara's friend; now, he is in Amawakuni, and he wants to make Hinohara submit to him.  Can Hinohara answer this question that will save his life and the lives of others.

Meanwhile, Kadowaki arrives and is determined to fight Isora and make him submit to his Hayagami, Orochi.  Plus, learn how Isora was betrayed and in turn, betrayed others.

THE LOWDOWN:  Recent volumes of the Arata: The Legend manga have been pretty good – some of series creator Yuu Watase's best storytelling.   Arata: The Legend Volume 19 is one of my favorites.

When Watase focuses on central conflict for several chapters, rather than bouncing around from one  part of  Amawakuni to another, the series soars.  In Vol. 19, the focus is on the hate-triangle of Isora, Hinohara, and Kadowaki  and that makes for some excellent fight comics.  However, Watase also uses the conflict to reveal more about each character.  The story offers a wealth of conflicts between friends, plus, some envy, regret, and resentment.  Suddenly, Hinohara and Kadowaki are more interesting than they were in earlier volumes of Arata: The Legend, and I'm ready for another volume.

POSSIBLE AUDIENCE:  Fans of creator Yuu Watase will want the Shonen Sunday title, Arata: The Legend.

Rating: A/10

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