Friday, February 11, 2011

X/1999: Volume 1: Prelude

by CLAMP, 190 pages

Brother and sister Fuma and Kotori are surprised and happy when they find out their childhood friend Kamui, whom they haven't seen in six years, has transferred to their high school. But when Kotori goes to greet him, he coldly tells her to stay away from him and never speak to him again. Then, on the way home from school, Fuma finds Kamui gravely injured, but just as surly, in the abandoned lot where the boy's house once stood. What's going on? And who are all these seers and magic-users with their eyes on Kamui? Prophecy, destiny, and free will look like they're going to clash in the days ahead, and the fate of the earth itself could hang in the balance.

I'm finding that reading CLAMP's manga is a little like when I was reading Marvel comics, where continuity across titles is important and characters clearly occupy the same universe(s) while their individual stories stand on their own. That consistency in the background and world-building is comforting and makes each new title feel like a familiar old friend from the first page--which is helpful when the present story looks like it's going to be a dark one. X/1999's first volume predates Tsubasa's and XxxHolic's by over a decade, but even with the older style and story content, I'm looking forward to recognizing its influence elsewhere, as well as seeing where it goes in its own right.

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