Children of the Sea by Daisuke Igarashi This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

June 10, 2013
What could a 12-year-old girl and two boys raised by dugongs (large marine mammals) have in common? They all share a similar viewpoint of the world, and more specifically, the sea.

Ruka is an average Japanese schoolgirl, at least in appearance. However, jaded by her parents' divorce and her inability to interact with those around her, she often appears temperamental and isolated. After getting barred from her school's handball team for roughing up a classmate, Ruka has no expectations for her summer vacation – until she meets the mysterious Umi, an unfathomable and exceptional boy who can't stand dry air on his skin and has incredible swimming ability. Sora, Umi's brother, shares these peculiar characteristics – although to a more extreme degree – and acts more hostile toward Ruka. Although Umi and Sora hardly interact with anyone other than their guardian, Jim (a man whose body is covered in tattoos and who has a perplexing background), they find that they share commonalities with Ruka; they've all witnessed a phenomenon they refer to as The Ghost of the Sea. In the meantime, fish are disappearing mysteriously around the world, with the only similarities in the instances being that the fish are spotted and disappear in a flash of light.

Children of the Sea is an exceptional graphic novel series. The characters, the drawing style, and the mythology are sure to attract in readers. The characters are remarkably unique. I hold a particular fondness for Ruka, a seemingly ordinary girl with a very mature perspective and interactions within a universe that most people only dream of. The art style is relatively simple, considering the diverse range of topics Daisuke Igarashi approaches.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

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