Tuesday, December 01, 2009

EARLY TATSUMI GRAPHIC NOVEL COMING OUT IN 2010

As unearthed by Travis McGee in the comments of a previous post, Drawn & Quarterly will be releasing Black Blizzard (黒い吹雪 - Kuroi Fubuki) in April 2010. The details are listed on Amazon and in the Spring 2010 catalogue of FSG (D&Q's distributor). For folks that have read A Drifting Life, the publication of Black Blizzard in Japanese back in the 1950s features in the plot of that autobiography.



From the listing on Amazon:
THE PREEMMINENT GEKIGA-KA'S FIRST GRAPHIC NOVEL FROM FIFTY YEARS AGO
Created in the late 1950s, Black Blizzard is Yoshihiro Tatsumi's remarkable first full-length graphic novel and one of the first published examples of Gekiga. Tatsumi documented how his love for Mickey Spillane and hard-boiled crime novels led him to create this landmark genre of manga in his epic, critically acclaimed 2009 autobiography, A Drifting Life. With Black Blizzard, Tatsumi explores the dark underbelly of his working-class heroes that five decades later has made him one of the best-known Japanese cartoonists in North America.



Susumu Yamaji, a twenty-four-year-old pianist, is arrested formurder and ends up handcuffed to a career criminal on the train that will take them to prison. An avalanche derails the train and the criminal takes the opportunity to escape, dragging a reluctant Susumu with him into the blizzard raging outside. They flee into the mountains to an abandoned ranger station, where they take shelter from the storm. As they sit around the fire they built, Susumu relates how love drove him to become a murderer. A cinematic adventure story, Black Blizzard uncovers an unlikely love story and an even unlikelier friendship.




According to their listing, it will be a $20.00 softcover book, 144 pages, coming out on April 27, 2010. We'll post more details as the release gets closer-- very exciting!

11 comments:

Joseph Luster said...

Nice find! I'm all over this.

JE said...

"Susumu Yamaji, a twenty-four-year-old pianist, is arrested for murder and ends up handcuffed to a career criminal on the train that will take them to prison."

That pretty much sells itself.

ryan said...

@Joseph: All credit to Travis, I hadn't been on Amazon hunting for a while but he found this one and tipped us off :)

@JE: Definitely. Sounds pulpy and full of white-knuckle action

Joseph Luster said...

Ah I shoulda noticed that. Well, big ups to Travis then!

Anonymous said...

Splendid news! I'm reading Drifting Life right now, can't wait for that one.

RSS said...

Fuck yeah! Definitely pre-ordering this ASAP. 豪快必ずやだな!

Anja Flower said...

YES! I've been wanting early Tatsumi for a long fucking time. Right on.

I really like images of early Tatsumi art I've seen from early gekiga anthologies like Shadow, Skyscraper etc.

seth nemec said...

so awesome! i was wistfully thinking i would never see any of this work in person when i was reading tatsumis autobio

Adonisus said...

It's easy to forget that at the time his work was first published, it was EXTREMELY controversial and actually caused a moral panic among the japanese public. Tatsumi and Takao Saito's ground-breaking mature crime comics were completely unlike Tezuka's enjoyable yet naive children's comics.

ryan said...

@Adonisus: Ah yeah, great points! I wonder who they will get to write an introduction to this book... D&Q has been doing great work about giving supplemental context for their manga (see: The back of Red Snow interview and essay)

Adonisus said...

What I particularly hope is that at some point Drawn and Quarterly will release another early gekiga masterpiece: Sanpei Shirato's leftist samurai drama 'Ninja Bugeicho'. It was one of the first titles from the pay library market to have a major impact on Japanese culture. Very iconoclastic in its depiction of the realities of life in Feudal Era Japan whilst using a scratchy Tezuka-esqe artstyle. Not to mention quite violet.