Synonyms: Soratobi Tamashii, Spirits Flying in The Sky, The Spirit of the Sky Builder, Ubusuna, Kuma Koroshi Kami Nusumi Tarou no Namida, Suna-kake, le pain et le chat, Imada Fuyu, Birthgrounds, Covered in sand, The bread and the cat, Still winter
For those readers who appreciate unique and different reads and non-mainstream manga and try to hunt down unusual stories to read, you might check out Sora Tobi Tamashii. I read it simply because I enjoy checking out new stuff - or rather in this case - new in translation stuff. Actually, this collection of unique mystical one-shots is a good opening of the "Season for reading creepy stuff" ranging from slightly creepy to supernatural and suspense that this darkening time of year seems to call for. These stories vary in that, from mystical tales with a folklore feel to some that are rather creepy. Anyway, these tales are not main-stream - they are surrealist. They would not be classified as pure horror, just rather creepy, odd, supernatural, symbolist, bizarre bent. I read them without any description and I have not seen any reviews.
This is a collection of 6 short stories that do definitely vary in quality.
One criticism of the volume in general would be that it seems to be ‘out there’ just to be artsy and its main point being - This is not a mainstream manga.
But - For those of us who like the different and supernatural this is an interesting read.
It’s hard to rate the whole volume because they vary, I would say an 8 but some of the stories are lower and some higher.
They do have strong themes that do carry through them of people on the outskirts of society, orphans and abandonment set in a background of surreal imagery, mythology and folklore, the type of things that were in original fairy tales. The art was really good in some but rather strange in others.
The first one was not much and did not make much of an impression on me but some of the other stories were quite good. They do not share settings so some are set in the present day and some in the past or fantasy but time period does not really figure highly in them.
Spirits Flying in the Air - the title piece was creepy and I quite enjoyed it, I thought the build up in tension in it was well done, and the imagery and folklore feel to this fantasy story was made stronger by the art, which conveyed the creepiness of this story well.
Covered In Sand was really different and had more character development in it and more of a plot and was really quite good.
The Pain and the Cat is about bread, and an abandoned kitten and abandoned girl in simplest terms, but it also takes on a surreal tone. Pain in it has the double meaning of pain and bread and somehow even though the setting was not historical the tone had a feeling of Dickens or the little match girl, a child trying to survive in a harsh world.
Tarou, Killer of Bears was more like some fantasy folklore stories that I have read but it did have some good twists but it was not the best.
Overall, I would say this seinen will appeal to mature readers who appreciate a change.