Thursday, April 12, 2012

Library Wars, Vol. 1

by Kiiro Yumi
200 pages

Library Wars is a manga series about censorship.  The national government has declared that censorship is necessary and has created the Media Betterment Committee to sniff out inappropriate materials and remove them from bookstores, schools, etc.  The local governments disagree with the national government and have made laws opposing censorship.  The local governments give libraries the ability to collect and check out all types of materials in order to prevent censorship.  The Library Defense Force is an armed group that has been created to help ensure that the library can carry out its mission.  The main character, Iku Kasahara, is in training to become a member of the Library Defense Force due to an encounter she experienced with a brave DF member who protected a book she wanted from being confiscated by the MBC.  This volume follows her as she goes through training and shows her conflict with Instructor Dojo.

This was a very interesting premise for a manga.  I think Kasahara is a bit dense because it is obvious to the reader early on that Dojo is not as awful as she makes him out to be.  This series does use more of the traditional manga conventions, like different types of type and art to depict emotion, thoughts, etc.  Therefore, it may take some time for a manga beginner, like myself, to fully grasp the content.  However, the plot intrigues me.

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