Review for The Ballad of Yaya Vol. 1: Fugue

Review for The Ballad of Yaya Vol. 1: Fugue

I received this book from Netgalley in exchange of an honest review.

I spotted this gorgeous and interesting looking graphic novel on Netgalley and I had to read it. I am glad though that I didn’t read the blurb, and I would recommend everyone to stay away from the current blurb. I just checked it, and oh boy, I am spoiled of all the things that will probably happen throughout this series. 😐 Really, why the hell do people write blurbs like this? Keep it spoiler-free please!

This beautiful book takes place in 1937 right before the Japanese invasion. During the first part of the story we follow both Yaya and Tuduo and then when they meet up we see it from both of them at the same time. Yaya is a rich girl who loves playing piano. Her parents are about to flee from Shanghai and off to Hong Kong. I loved how strong this girl is, though she makes some very dumb mistakes. I guess I could forgive her, she is still a tiny girl, but still I was shaking my head when she wouldn’t listen to her parents. I understand that you want to play your piano, I get that, but there is a time and place for that. Now is definitely not the time and you should thank the Lord that you didn’t get hurt any further.
Tuduo is a street urchin who takes care of his little brother. He has to beg and do tricks to earn money. His life isn’t the happiest, because no matter what he does his boss is never happy and hits him.

These two unlikely children will meet up in the midst of a war that is starting. Bombs are falling and you will be on the edge of your seat to find out what will happen next. Will these two get home safely? Will they find Yaya’s parents?

I have to say that I was a bit hesitant at first when I started the story. Why? Because one of the narrators is a bird. And sorry, talking birds are just a no no. In a magical setting, sure, but having a talking bird in a story like this… no. Thankfully, he turned out to be not that annoying, or I just tuned him out. Whatever came first. 😛

The art reminded me a lot of Ghibli’s art, which was absolutely lovely.

This first volume ends on a cliffhanger and argggggghhh! While I now know what is going on, thanks to the superspoiler blurb, I still need to read the next volume. Hopefully it comes out not too long after this one releases.

All in all, a beautifully drawn story with likeable characters. I would recommend it.

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