To what distance would you go for your one true love? In the midst of an alien invasion, Mikako joins the resistance, leaving behind the one young man she loves. As she goes deeper into space, Mikako's only connection with her boyfriend is through cell-phone text messages. The war rages on and years pass, but Mikako barely ages in the timelessness of space while Noboru grows old. How can the love of two people, torn apart by war, survive?
Hoshi no Koe was published in English as The Voices of a Distant Star: Hoshi no Koe by Tokyopop on August 1, 2006. Vertical Inc. re-licensed the series in 2017. The series was also published in Brazilian Portuguese by Panini Comics/Planet Manga in November 2010.
Hoshi no Koe, or "Voices of a Distant Star", is an outstanding manga about life, love and waiting. When I first watched the anime, I felt totally blinded by the message carried within the characters, their thoughts and their relationship. But, for some reason, that same feeling grew on me when I finished the manga version.
First of all, the art! If you didn't like this aspect in the anime, you'll be completly amazed when you read the manga version. Yumeka Sumomo did a great job by creating beautiful landscapes and places, just as the anime version did. One aspect that I found very pleasant were
the characters; they are all so well drawn and portraited that you'll find them very different from the OVA version - perhaps much better, I must add.
The story itself is fantastic. With just one volume you'll understand the characters feelings, their stories and their interactions with other persons and friends. There aren't just two main characters and their relationship, but two individual persons and more people around them.
Overall, I would say that anyone should read this manga, especially if you have seen the OVA. You will be amazed with the details, the story and even understand some points that weren't well explained in the anime version. It is a quick and wonderfull reading that will make you understand how far love can go; even if it is ten or a million of years away.
Hoshi no Koe, Voices of a Distant Star is a short read with roughly 250 pages, although in those 250 pages the message portrayed is powerful. An emotional sledgehammer. Within the first two chapters, as you read of this tale of two lovers separated by time itself, you sympathize with their feelings. Separated by the vastness of space, having time itself as their enemy, this allegory is a parallel to all long distance relationships.
This manga is no more story than it is a representation of the fragility of human emotions and how love and feelings for others in far off places are difficult to maintain;
how forgetting is so much easier, how forgetting is so much less painful. However, how forgetting is not always what your heart will allow you to do.
The art in the manga is crisp and clean, without a doubt a match to the story. No over exaggeration, no vibrant imagery, no jovial scenes to spoil the atmosphere. The blank expressions on the peoples faces, a representation of their melancholic state. The blank backgrounds a parallel to the blankness of space. To say the least the art work sets the mood for a powerful narrative.
The characters are also quite truly spectacular, their reaction lifelike and without a doubt the reaction of the average man. I respect and admire the mangaka's portrayal of human emotions under the pressure of depression. The characters are well rounded and realistic.
The story itself, as I stated earlier, is quite the narrative. From start to finish this short read is powerful, simple and undoubtedly an emotionally striking story. Within a story of love and painful separation in which nearly anyone could get lost, immersed in the progression of it all. It is an emotional story, tear jerking at times and heart warming at others.
Overall I highly suggest anyone to read this manga, it is a short read, 10 chapter, 250 pages or so. In essence readers will be captured by the wholehearted desire of two lovers who reach through time and space in hopes of once again meeting each other.
Hoshi no Koe (Voices of a Distant Star) is simply powerful; a must read.
What would you do if the person you love goes into space? Would you be able to love that person even it means to possibly never see that person again? How will you face that dilemma? Will you be able to move on with your life? Hoshi no Koe tries to explain these issues to the reader, which was successfully done in my opinion, though it may lack some depth for other readers.
Hoshi no Koe revolves around two teenagers in love, Noboru and Mikako; Mikako goes into space to fight extraterrestrial creatures, the tarsians, while Noboru stays on Earth. These two will communicate with eachother
only by cellphone, a difficult medium to really maintain contact with each other. From here on the story moves on.
As the manga only has 10 chapters, it is difficult to explain the problems these two encounter in-depth. However, while it may seem short, the author manages to convey the situation of the two main characters well by adding short and meaningful dialogues that helps the reader to understand their situations. This may make the reader to consider what he/she would do in such a situation, which I personally found enjoyable. One thing that bothered me a bit in the beginning was the fact of using the usual mecha machines, though as the story moved on, it didn't bother me anymore.
Hoshi no Koe doesn't have a lot of characters to offer, as its main focus lays between the relationship of Noboru and Mikako. These two characters are represented well, with enough character development for the story to be coherent and enjoyable to read. The amount of secondary characters are limited, but fulfill their purpose of shaping the lead characters, while at the same time helping to explain some situations and providing some diversity to the story.
The art of the manga fits well with story; the use of shading the characters and shading the panels partly, helps convey the gloominess of the story. Not too many details are put into the background, which may bother some readers, as it is simplistic. This doesn't mean that it impacts the story.
Hoshi no Koe was overall a good read. It was a well executed romance which implemented the difficulties people may encounter in the near future when humanity is able to travel to other planets. Would you be able to keep loving a person, if you could only receive messages every 8 years or so? Overall I would recommend this manga to anyone who enjoys reading a romance or just is on the outlook for something new to read, though be warned, it is not like the romance/school manga we are accustomed to read. For some people it may be too short to really explain the story, though I wouldn't personally bother about it.
I came to read this after the anime movie, left me with mixed feelings, the setting was very different and interesting for your usual romantic story, but the pacing of the movie didnt let the story get the needed development for it to become something more.
Enters the manga, 2 years after the movie was released.
The plotline didnt change much from the movie, but was extend enough, there is alot more development for the beggining, before Mikako goes into space, there are some new faces and situations, but all in all it follows the anime story, uses its potential to the fullest and manages to give
an ending, that was way more meaningfull for the romance. It expands from where the original ended, going further, to give a much better sense of conclusion than the original ever managed to.
If you are new to the story, with the manga, I believe it wont be as meaningfull, as if you had seen the movie, but it will definitly be very much worthy if those hours you put on reading it.
Also I enjoyed the cast way more with the manga, they felt more developed and well based, as humans, they were more believeable, so you kinda connect to their personal stories and the romance, much better. Thus there were some really emotional scenes, to which the art of the manga really helps to delvier
The art was also a good improvement!! The designs look way better.
It is simple, yet powerfully conveys the message the story pretend to transmit.
So I came to read it biased from what I thought of the movie, and I did enjoyed it greatly. (I still think you will enjoy the manga, you dont need to see the movie first for that)
It is kinda rare to find an adaptation that surpasses the original material, but here, it happened, and I am really glad for that! The mangaka picked the series and gave it its final touch, soo much needed to fulfill the potential the anime had left to be explored. Truly a good example of how great, adaptations can be.
An unpolished gem, that now shines much brighter!