mjj (flemmings) wrote,

(Later edit- Youmi Henjou Yawa. Hate those alternate readings. Especially as hensei seems to be what they mean.)

There's probably a word for this emotion and it's probably quite uncomplimentary but well, so what? I find myself ridiculously pleased at having discovered an English book about dragons in the afterword to vol.2 of Okano Reiko's Youmi Hensei Yawa (umm- Nocturnal Tales of Enchanting Transformations, kanaa? which title, if I'd looked at it more closely, might have alerted me to what could be a spoilerific plot point, or might just be a reference to all the magic beasts (foxes, monkeys, turtles, pigs-- yes, I said pigs) wandering around and appearing as amorous beautiful young things.)

The dragon book is Francis Huxley's The Dragon - Spirit of Nature, Nature of Spirit, and the Japanese name is nothing like that; and the reason I'm pleased if you must know is that I'm such a fan of rum-buggery that even cultural interpenetration makes me all happy and tingly. Not to mention having a book in English which, if I'm reading this afterword correctly, talks about Chinese dragons too. Of course it seems to talk about them in some connection with alligators, which also show up in Youmi Hensei, evidently for a reason. (The alligators are dispersed by a white tiger, which you all remember is the guardian animal of the uhh west I think? and at this point my head starts to hurt wondering if alligators = dragons = guardian animal of the east. But if white tigers trump alligators/ dragons, why is there a tigerskin rug on the floor of General Dragon-gem's study, huh?) It's that kind of a manga.

Okano Reiko is of course the Onmyouji mangaka. Her style is as ahh unaccommodating as ever, but a little better than Onmyouji. This is set in China with lotsnlots of Chinese place names and titles; it has Taoist Immortals in it, a sure guarantee of WTFness; and the dialogue balloons use a typeface which mimics brush writing. The upshot of all this is never being entirely certain of what I'm reading. Even the afterwords, by various guest writers, are obscure. And perverse with that Japanese perversity that never addresses what a gaijin thinks is the point. Why are you going all tingly-glowy about this tiresomely otokorashii dragon's devotion to the General when you *should* be talking about--- {possible major spoiler.} I mean besides the fact that you're male, why are you talking about rambunctious mannerless dragons when you should be talking about--- {possible major spoiler.}

And yes, I shall tell you all about it later. When I've hacked my way through the increasingly obscure action of vol.3.
Tags: dragons, okano_reiko

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