English: From Far Away
Synonyms: From the Other Side
Published: Nov 1992 to Mar 2003
Authors: Hikawa, Kyouko (Story & Art)
Score: 8.461 (scored by 1974 users)
1 indicates a weighted score
2 based on the top manga page.
Popular Tagsfantasy romance shoujo
Feb 10, 2009
I had been holding off on reading this one for a while. I had assumed (never something you should do) that it would be like Fushigi Yuugi. And not that I hated Fushigi Yuugi, but Miaka pissed me off. I did not like her. And there were too many guys in potential for Miaka and that was like what the whole story was about. Miaka and these sexy guys trying to win something but there too sexy so how does that even make sense? Sexy men are never really like that. But that's another story.
Anyway I finally decided to read it. First off Noriko is 18, which hit off better with me. Because she's not some hysterical, emotional 16 year old little damsel in distress (who I can't stand because they always whine! Miaka!). Well technically she is a damsel but she's so down to earth, more mature. I'm 20 so the age was closer.
So I started reading and at it first it was like all the other 'girl who gets transported to some other world to save it' deal, but then Noriko is actually a very calm, very responsible girl. She doesn't freak out like some child and she doesn't take for granted Izark who is helping her. She actually has to learn the language, which Miaka does not, and she spends a lot of time here. You find out that she is the key to Izark and his demonic powers. And that this prophecy is all about the apocalypse. Or well you know. Of course the heroes have to save the world from the evil doers!
I think what kept me was the emotional bond that I could see developing between Izark (total hottie) and Noriko immediately. And Noriko wasn't all flustered by some hot guy saving her. They aren't attracted by looks! Noriko sees Izark for who he really is, inside his heart. Even past his...um well his little problem that lives on inside him. And Izark sees the goodness in Noriko, her kindness. The bond between these two is incredibly real (well not the demons, and magic and other world stuff) and you can't help but smile. Because it's both sad and wonderful. Who they are and what they are is something that is resolved.
And it was their romance that I was so intent in reading for more for. When I was reading Fushigi Yuugi, I was always so angry with Miaka and how selfish and pathetic and whiney she really seemed to be. The only thing Miaka did in my opinion was find the warriors. Then they did all the work. But in From Far Away Noriko and Izark take on the world saving task all by themselves. They support each other and it was a much more mature relationship I simply sighed in relief when I was reading them. Izark needed (and NOT in that way!) Noriko in ways that only she could seem to be there for (if I remember correctly Miaka did a lot of needing, not Tamahome). And Izark was her protector (duh). Noriko sees her struggles, works them out rationally, and then pursues what she can do to help her in her and Izark's quest. She tries to take on as many problems as Izark does, she just has a better handle on things and is fluid in the way she handles things thrown at her. Granted she cried out for Izark every time someone man-handled her, but she's like 5'2 and 100 lbs. She's complete human. There isn't must she can do in a warring world.
The art is something I take pleasure in. It's so beautiful and clean. Although I could have gone without all of the bams, thuds, screeches and any other big bolded black letters that were thrown in just about every damn fight scene! That blocked out some of the picture and kept my attention diverted which I did not like. But it was gorgeous. The flow between each panel was good. And the emotions were caught perfectly.
The characters are wonderful. The development between Noriko and Izark is beautiful and lonely and difficult. Izark is full of despair and Noriko is like a bubble of courage. The supporting characters are funny and fit well in complementing Izark and Noriko. But I can't stay away from our main two. Izark and Noriko are the two who's relationship is focused on throughout the entire series (duh) and it's not just some quick 5 minute suddenly their in love thing. Through Izark's internal struggle, and the relationship that blooms, I was melting inside.
The story does not focus on love, nor does it solely focus on fighting. Rather it's more the struggle between good and evil, the light and the dark, that each and every single person must go through. The romance was slow, sweet and perfect. The fights were bloody. But it was the battle that people had to take up for themselves to defeat the evil that was inside them and around them.
Of course if you have read Fushigi Yuugi, I would more than just recommend From Far Away. But if you are like any other shoujo/romance person than I say read this. It's not exactly short, but I wouldn't have it any other way. Take the time to read this.
I suppose what it boils down to in this manga is the maturity level. If your tired of all the whiney girls, then you should read this.
It was undeniably sweet and gorgeous.
Now I'm off to read Red River and Basara.
Btw, did I mention that this is SO MUCH BETTER than Fushigi Yuugi? read more
Feb 5, 2010
The first thing I thought was really interesting about this series was that the 'spirited away' girl had to learn the language spoken in the new world and it takes her a lot of times and several misunderstandings. The fact that you see her language progress and become less clumsy through the story is something I think more writers should take into consideration. Given, the same language seems to be used over many different countries, but I'll just give my thumbs up for the original idea of language barrier.
The flow of the story is really good. It keeps you on edge: "will he become the monster that brings the end of the world"? and, for the wide range of supporting characters, you never have the feeling you have to stop and think hard about who is what.
The romance element was just perfect -in my opinion- because I felt there was no rush. It's not love at first sight, and it's also not a "bickering couple" a la Pride and Prejudice style which seems to be a trend when it comes to romances. The characters just slowly grow to love each other. There's also no love triangles, which I find refreshing (ok, so there's a guy who starts liking Noriko, but she flat out rejects him short after). The way Noriko and Izark tease each other was endearingly sweet without it being too mushy.
As someone who doesn't believe in absolute good and evil, it was somewhat bothering the fact that there's "good people" and "bad people"... but by the end of the story this matter is resolved in a way I felt was satisfying.
The interaction between main characters and supporting characters was really good. You can see how their personalities influence each other and allow the main characters to grow.
Now, when it comes to the characterization of the main couple, I'm very pleased with Noriko's characterization, but not as pleased with Izark.
Noriko is different from most female characters in these "spirited away" series in that she is very mature and she doesn't throw childish tantrums or fight with the people who help her. Very early on she decides to trust Izark (who just saved her life) and you never see her questioning her trust on him. She's usually very coolheaded, and doesn't usually run into trouble out of stupidity. In her growth as a character she becomes a lot more self-confident and brave, but she's still no warrior. Overall, a great character.
Izark was a lot more of a standard character for this sort of genre. Beautiful, powerful with a dark past and a darker destiny. Considering all the times this guy must have been bashed and beaten up, you'd at least expect him to have a broken nose at some point, but apparently he's so good looking he can pass as an actor (is this something to do with his regeneration abilities?). There's a lot of development on this character from an aloof lone warrior to a person who can even make jokes every now and then and even ridicule himself for the sake of his friends. I think his interaction with Alef is exquisitely rich. Still, I wouldn't call him the most original of characters. As Noriko first notices, he's a good guy.
All in all, even if this series is not perfect, I think it's a must-read for people into fantasy shojo. It's really a good story and unless you're really not into shojo or fantasy, I can't think of one reason why you wouldn't like it. read more
Aug 24, 2009
May 8, 2010
And, Izark and Noriko, just WOW!!! Definitely a must read for all action and romance fans:)
Jun 17, 2011
I stumbled on this manga when I was trying to find a similar story line to Red River.
I didn't have any expectations...but WOW did it become addicting.
The best thing about this manga are the characters, characters and well...CHARACTERS!! XD
I fell in love with the Hero and Heroine. I totally expected Noriko to become totally dependent and emotional about being stuck in a different world like some heroines become! NOT Noriko!! And thats why I Love her! She sucks it up, learns the language, and does her own thing!! Izark is the guy any girl would want to have if such a thing happened to her!! He is stoic, warrior, and strategist. But also has a softer side to him.**did I mention good lookin?? ;)** Together they make on heck of a team!!
The plot just added to the growing relationship between Izark and Noriko. He has a hard time trusting ppl but slowly Noriko is able to break all of his fears and doubts! This is just my opinion but I LOVE this manga. I'm surprised that there were such few reviews so I had to make one!!
>>OVERALL 10, 10, 10!!! (WISH THERE WAS SOMETHING HIGHER!! XD) read more
Jan 11, 2010
This manga is one of my favorites for so many reasons:
Story - 9
This is one of those stories where at the end, you feel immensely satisfied, but sad that it didn't go on forever.
Unlike some stories of the time-travelling genre, this is pretty realistic as far as fantasy goes. When Noriko first arrives in a strange world, she doesn't understand the language there, which is pretty rare in other stories of this type. She has to put forth some effort to get along in her new world. And she has a realistic yet optimistic view of things; she's not some happy-go-lucky, tra-la-la ditz like other shojo heroines. She's tough, I like that in my heroines! And Izark... he's so handsome and so loveable! You feel sorry for him because of his "fate" but at the same time, he's such a nice guy and he always puts on a brave face, so you find yourself cheering for him. Not to mention he's one heck of a warrior!
Art - 9
The art is simple and beautiful. It's an older manga, so for those of you who mostly read mangas with the newer-style art, the drawings in Kanata Kara might take some getting used to. Personally, I think this is some of the best artwork in an "older" manga that I've seen, and the body proportions are good.
Character - 8
The development is smooth and pleasant. The way things progress, it all feels so natural. Only once or twice during a few chapters did I ever feel like the story was dragging a little, but it always picked up the pace again in the next chapter or so. If I had to choose, I would prefer a story to lag a little than to rush things too quickly.
Enjoyment - 10
There's a reason this story is one of my favorites. I enjoyed reading this manga, and it doesn't leave an overly-sweet aftertaste either, unlike a lot of stories in the shojo genre.
Overall - 9
This manga is really a classic. I think almost anyone who reads this will find themselves laughing & crying with the characters.