Monster 10 by Naoki Urasawa: A-

From the back cover:
“Cedok Bridge, the three frogs… the mother of the twins is in Prague.” A cryptic message from wealthy financier Schuwald sends Tenma to the city of a hundred spires. There, he meets Grimmer, an investigative reporter tracking down the former director of the infamous 511 Kinderheim orphanage. Could it be that the horrific experiments of the past are being recreated in Prague?

The intense events of Munich are left behind in this volume as Tenma travels to Prague to follow a tip from Schuwald. Most of the events are actually told from the perspective of freelance journalist Grimmer, who’s a very likable guy looking into abuse allegations at 511 Kinderheim.

The change of venue offered by this shift in the story is actually quite welcome, as it offers a slightly lighter read, even though there was a torture scene that was painful to watch. Two cool new characters are introduced, too. Grimmer helps Tenma out on a couple of occasions and discovers the location of a tape that will reveal more information about Johan’s past. Detective Suk is a newcomer to his job, very clean and earnest, but as he investigates the murder of his superior, he begins to realize that some people on the police force are not as respectable as they seem. Both are excellent examples of how Urasawa can introduce a new character and have him feel well-developed pretty much instantly.

Nina has also made her way to Prague and might possibly be killing people. It’s not certain yet, but it would be interesting if true. The picture book that freaked Johan out did make me think there might be a dark side to Nina, and it was she, not Tenma, who was capable of shooting at Johan during the book donation ceremony.

I like the direction the story has taken, and hope these new characters stick around.

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  1. […] so her posts are always worth a look! Michelle Smith has spent her vacation wisely, reading vols. 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, and 17 of Monster. I can’t wait to see her take on vol. 18, now that […]

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