Basara 27 by Yumi Tamura: B+

From the back cover:
In this special collection of side stories, join Sarasa and Shuri after the war, as they rebuild Japan and travel the world together. In the distant Huang Empire, Sarasa is infected with a fatal disease—but will Shuri betray the Huang Emperor to save her? And when the new Japanese government is beset with turmoil, it’s up to two children to convince a reclusive hermit named Hayato to lead his country.

Finally, Yumi Tamura offers a glimpse of life before the apocalypse… before the ruined world Sarasa knows… before the beginning of Basara!

What I like about how Tamura envisioned these appendices is that they feel like natural extentions of the main story. She didn’t have to manufacture some conflict for Shuri and Sarasa that was insulting to them, like inserting some new vixen who’s a threat to their relationship. Instead, it’s a story about guilt and atonement, adjusting to the needs of another person, and making amends by doing something with one’s life.

The tale with Hayato also isn’t useless fluff, since he’s dealing with anger towards Tatara who seemingly deserted them all and whose absence led to the creation of a government that didn’t fit the revolutionaries’ ideals. Shuri and Sarasa’s kids make an appearance, and they’re cute enough, but the best is Motomichi, all growed up and looking incredibly like his dad. I especially like the panels where Hayato looks into the young man’s eyes and thinks “I killed your father.”

The rest of the stories are really, really short and don’t contribute a great deal to my enjoyment of the book either way. The last one, though brief, does end on a good note for the series, however.

Now Basara is really over. Sniff.

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  1. First of all

    This is the way to end Basara! Even though it’s all short stories, it’s one of my favorite volumes. I felt that the ending in Volume 25, while powerful, is incomplete. So much happened that I figured it would not do justice to the subtleties of Sarasa and Shuri’s relationship to resolve it suddenly like that. So I was very happy with the short story in this volume where we saw Sarasa and Shuri working through their issues. In fact, I think that short story has some of the most romantic scenes in all of Basara. Some of the other parts were a little silly, but I could forgive that, especially since the interpreter scene is pretty funny. Plus, I think it’s profound that Shuri solved the issue by talking instead of crazy action sequences like so many things were solved in the main story.

    I also wondered at the end of Volume 25 how was the power transition going to happen. To really do justice to the issue, Tamura would have probably had to write an entire sequel series, so I’m happy that she just nodded to the issue in the story with Hayato. However, I don’t think I would have been satisfied with anything else. And I think the idea of Sarasa and Shuri using commerce to improve the world is brilliant!

    And … and … having Shido and Ageha have a reunion in hell is priceless! I don’t care if it was just one of Sarasa’s dreams…

  2. You make very good points about how this fills in the blanks left by the ending of vol. 25, which was certainly satisfying dramatically but didn’t address some lingering questions.

  3. Ello!!! Well first of all… This was a GREAT story… I really love it.. in fact I really wanted it to be more than 27 volumes…. I really love hw the author makes the climax and the resolution … wihtin the “spiritual” meanings… lol… I really liked it…but as Sara K. said it ..i feel kinda of incomplete and kinda fast..of course it was the main part, the one that will determine the entire story… but anyways I really love it…It shocked me lol… but I have a question and I hope u can answer me… in volumen 25 almost at the end…when Nagi tells the avenger man (lol..I dont remeber his name) to go and travel around the world… and we see Sarasa and sand right?…. I happen to see a little kid there? D: …. is he or is she their child? … 😀 im looking forward to it… 😀

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