Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Flowering Harbour by Hayashi Seiichi


Recently finishing the fascinating Trash Market by Tsuge Tadao, translated and edited by Ryan Holmberg, published by D&Q, (no doubt a post forthcoming), I found myself in the mood to read more and a few clicks later brought me to the website of London based comic book publisher Breakdown Press, looking through their impressive catalogue my eye fell on Flowering Harbour by Hayashi Seiichi, again translated by Ryan Holmberg, after very much enjoying Golden Pollen and Other Stories, published by the now sadly defunct Picture Box Inc, I thought I'd have to give it a go. Flowering Harbour contains just the one story, and is produced in what could be described as a chapbook style with a stylish vertical obi, looking over the book it seems such a refreshing change that none of the cover art work here is encroached upon by a barcode or price tag, it's immacutely presented. As well as the story there is a brief introduction from Hayashi entitled Bohemian Living giving a contextual impression to the story which originally appeared in Garo in 1969.

As previously mentioned Flowering Harbour contains just the one same self titled story, it's a soulful one which ends as quickly as it arrives, so it's a little difficult to describe the drama of it without giving it all away, but the story is one of lost and loosing love, illustratively it feels wind blown, (some of it's scenes are played out in a storm), which adds to the sense of the character's emotions being blown and caught up on the much larger scale, although brief it's great to find yourself caught up in it's storyline, having it presented here on it's own makes it the more easier to turn back and read and enjoy again. It's also great to see that more from Hayashi is on the way, Drawn and Quarterly are issuing the paperback edition of his Red Colored Elegy any day now, perhaps it's already out where you are?, and then in December Breakdown Press have lined up Red Red Rock: And Other Stories    to look forward to.

Flowering Harbour at Breakdown Press


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