One of my all-time favorite manga series is InuYasha. I started out watching the anime (animated TV version), but when the show stopped before the story did, I went out and bought the entire 56 volumes, because I just had to know how the story ended. And it was worth every penny!
InuYasha: A Feudal Fairy Tale was written and illustrated by Rumiko Takahashi. In this story, Kagome is a normal 15-year-old until she accidentally falls down the well on her family’s property and ends up in the feudal era of Japan. There she encounters InuYasha, a half-demon, and discovers she is the reincarnation of the priestess Kikyo, with whom InuYasha was once in love. Together with their friends Miroku (a lecherous monk cursed with a wind tunnel in his hand), Sango (the last of the demon slayers), and Shippo (an orphaned fox demon), they must collect the shattered pieces of the Shikon jewel before the evil Naraku – an enemy who has hurt or betrayed each of them – can use it to become an all-powerful demon.
I love this series. It’s actually shonen manga – geared more towards boys than girls – but it is such an absolutely fantastic tale woven with adventure, friendship, love, betrayal, and sacrifice that I can’t help myself. And admittedly, a good portion of my own story The Heart of Everything was inspired by this manga ?.
If you’ve already read my book, you’ve probably already caught some of the similarities just from my summary above: Jesse is a “half-devil,” just like InuYasha was a half-demon (and they have very similar personalities as well – short-tempered and brusque to hide their kind hearts). Emer is a reincarnation of Jesse’s former love, just as Kagome came from Kikyo – even the fact that Emer is an elf “priestess” rather than an elf “princess” (as would be traditional) is due to this series. You can even see similarities between Emer and Kagome – both are brave and kind, and neither can fully use the skill sets of their predecessors.
Looking at the less obvious connections, the “love triangle” with the past competing against the present is much more fully realized in InuYasha than in my own novel, but it appears nonetheless. Both stories feature an evil villain seeking power, although Naraku is only half-demon, and Drake is a full-blooded devil. There is even a magic jewel in both works – though the Shikon jewel and Emer’s amulet serve very different functions. And InuYasha features much more of a “team” of characters, whereas my book is distinctly only three major players. Still, it is safe to say that without having read InuYasha prior to writing my story, The Heart of Everything would have probably taken on a very different form. And that would have been a pity ?.
What do you think? Share your thoughts in the comments section!
Until the next time, keep reading!
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I have two passions: reading and writing. You can't write good stories without first reading good stories - that's my theory, anyway. So this is where I'll share with you the depth of those passions: background on what and why I write, as well as talking about the books that I read and how they impact my writing.