Will a half-mermaid, half-human girl bring an end to the feud between humanity and the mer-people—or bring about the destruction of all life on Earth? As a merman named Shona is returning to his birthplace to spawn, he meets a young human, Jimmy, who suffers from amnesia. Together, Jimmy and Shona set off to find the missing girl. Will they be able to avert a mysterious prophecy, or will finding the secret of Jimmy's identity delay them enough to set Earth on the path to destruction?
Tsuki no Ko is a beautiful ~late 80's-early 90's shoujo manga that explores darker themes like reincarnation, the apocalyptic, alienation, loneliness, morality/moral obligation, and sacrifice rooted in profound love for another. While its mood is not necessarily dismal, the nature of the aforementioned themes lend it an implicit sense of melancholy that, in turn, runs throughout the bulk of every volume. That said, there are various breaks in this heaviness that approach a much lighter, almost slice-of-lifeish tone, as can be seen in some of the interactions between Art/Jimmy and often in Jimmy's behavior alone. These, I think, give the plot a nice balance
and keep the reader from growing bored or disillusioned from a constant stream of drama.
The themes are orchestrated quite well and all have a secure place within the plot. They also aren't overly philosophical or abstracted, which allows the different character arcs to retain at least some sense of relatability, as well as prevents the manga itself from veering towards the labels of pretentious or navel-gazing. (note: I like abstract, philosophical works but I think their presence as characteristics in shoujo manga have their limits.)
Romance plays a pretty significant role in Tsuki no Ko, but its not the saccharine kind that is unfortunately present in many shoujos; the idea of being a star-crossed or jilted lover is heavily bound up in the story. The relationships are pretty eccentric, which is in accordance with the unusual nature of the story as a whole. I liked this aspect, but it requires some suspension of disbelief, which I guess you should expect if you're reading a supernatural shoujo manga.
There are some plot holes, but I don't think they're significant enough to hinder the reader's comprehension or serve as a detriment to the story. I'm not a fan of the ending, however, and did find it kind of rushed in comparison to pace of preceding chapters.
The art is consistently pretty and at times, beautiful. I didn't have any major qualms with it, but I am a fan of bishoujo and bishounen characters and the shoujo art style as a whole.
The personalities and motivations of the characters are, for the most part, fleshed out quite well. Each character had some sort of 'fatal flaw', which added some realism into an otherwise supernaturally based story. Both Art and Jimmy can be annoying, but I think that's necessary for their characterization.
The first volume made immersion a little difficult, but it became steadily better thereon. The introduction of Jimmy's siblings (I'm not sure what chapter/volume this happens in exactly, but its relatively early on) was, for me, when things got really intriguing.
My dislike of the ending, coupled with some minor plot holes, made me give this an 8. I was absolutely recommend it. I found it quite similar to Please Save My Earth, though not as sad.
This underhyped and underrated "gem" should get all the praise it deserves and be acknowledged by all manga lovers out there.
The story of Moon Child starts off peculiar and somewhat hard to get into. But once you finish the first volume you'll definitely want to read the next installment. As soon as you reach the last page of the first volume, the plot gains so much potential and things gain momentum (the mangaka has stated that volume 1 is like an introduction to the series). One by one you'll learn something about the tales of mermaids and be introduced to how their lifestyle is. If
you are familiar with the story of the Little Mermaid, Moon Child uses some of its idea, but the author added some twists and different concepts, mixing it up to create such a bizzare yet compelling series. The story starts in the aftermath of the tragic past in the history of mermaids. It follows the tale of the little mermaid and given a deep story behind it.
The art of Moon Child is at its best back when it is created (in the late 1980's). It may not be eye candy or anything great, but it gets the job done and doesn't detract the reader from the story.
The characters are all intruiging and fascinating. One of the things I like about the series is how the main character was portrayed as an innocent child that is in the process of maturing into an "adult". The life of fish are often used as metaphors for some of the characters (as weird as it is sounds) but these unusual ideas is what makes this series a very unique one.
I am enjoying how things are unfolding and how the plot gets twisted in every volume. What keeps this series a very memorable read is how the author takes the simple tale of the little mermaid and turned it into something darker, more mysterious and give it such an intricate twist. It became so engrossing for me.
Lost from the mainstream world of manga, Moon Child is a hidden gem that has been created for almost two decades.
Moon Child is proving to be a masterpiece series, even with it's unusual concept. A series that can be compare to the likes of Please Save My Earth and Basara. Masterpieces that are brilliantly written but wavering in out of the lame light, that not many people are aware of that such fantastic series exist. If you ever have the chance to read this series don't let it pass.
For now I'll finish my review in a positive note, since I am still in the process of reading the whole series. Till then I highly recommend this series to all the reader (not only of manga, but to all people who enjoy reading). Such a classic title deserves a little recognition and definitely deserves a chance. If you have a great imagination and love romantic fantasy stories with a twist, then you should check this one out.