Book Reviews

#12ReviewOfXmas #BookReview Yakuza Moon By Sean Michael Wilson, Michiru Morikawa (illustrator), Shōko Tendō


Publisher: Kodansha International Ltd
ISBN13: 9784770031464
Genre: Manga
Release date: 19 07 2011
Price*: Kindle £N/A (GBP)/  Paperback £13.99 (GBP)
Kindle $N/A (USD)/ Paperback $14.45 (USD)
Pages: ~ 192
My rating: 8/10
You can get this book here:
Amazon UK
Book Depository
What I learned from this book: That married men act worse than pigs, I feel pity for those women married to them.

Description of the book: The story of a yakuza’s daughter is tellingly recreated in a mature manga format, illustrated by a female Japanese manga artist in a lively and inspired fashion. A poignant and eye-opening true-life memoir, Yakuza Moon is a shocking yet intensely moving first-person account of one woman’s experience of growing up in Japan’s yakuza society. Born into the family of a wealthy yakuza boss, Shoko Tendo lived her early years in luxury. But labelled the yakuza kid, she became the victim of bullying and discrimination from teachers and classmates at school, and of her father’s drunken rages at home. The family then falls into debt, and Tendo falls in with the wrong crowd. By the age of fifteen, she is a gang member, by the age of eighteen a drug addict and her twenties are marked by a series of abusive and violent relationships with men. Tendo sinks lower and lower. After the death of her parents and her own attempt at suicide, she begins a tortuous, soul-searching re-evaluation of the road she has taken. An unconventional act of empowerment helps her finally take control of her life, leading to redemption and a new chance. Now translated into 14 languages, this is the universally appealing story of a young woman’s successful struggle to escape from a life of ostracism and abuse, and a glimpse into Japan’s closed yakuza world from an insider’s viewpoint.

How this book made me feel: This was my first manga book ever! And it was pretty tough one as well.

This book tells a story of Shoko Tendo, and it was a manga version of her memoir. Her life was pretty brutal and filled with bad decisions, drugs and sex. She got mixed with the wrong crowd at a very young age, and that got her into drugs, countless horrible and abusive relationships, mostly with married men. I didn’t like Shoko at all, she continuously made poor decisions in her life, and it all started with her being “Know it all” in her young days.

The narrative of this novel is filled with violence, and it got sadder and more miserable as I was reading through this book. This book is a great example of how poor decisions can ruin one’s life. Even though it was a sad book, I absolutely loved the illustrations used to portray this story. I found this novel quite educational, I learned how people were getting by in Japan in 1990ies, especially women.

This book is quite nerve-racking and upsetting, and the chapters are quite long, but it is a one-sitting read and pages just fly by. The ending of this book rounded up the story very nicely, but I wanted a different ending for Shoko.

So, to conclude, it was an unusual and shocking journey for me, but at the same time an invaluable experience gained throughout the pages, and I would strongly recommend it to everybody, and I hope you will learn how to make smart decisions in your lives. ; )

Thank You for your time! ❤


71-I8gWAorL._US230_.jpgAbout the author: Sean Michael Wilson is a Harvey and Eisner nominated comic book writer from Scotland. He has had more than a dozen books published with a variety of US, UK and Japanese publishers. Although also writing ‘western’ style graphic novels, such as adaptations of classical novels, he often works with Japanese and Chinese artists on manga-style books. He is currently the only British creator writing books for big Japanese publisher Kodansha. He is also the editor of the critically acclaimed collection ‘AX: alternative manga’ (one of Publishers Weekly’s ‘Best ten books of 2010’ and nominated for a Harvey Award) and writer of the Stan Lee Award-winning adaptation of ‘Sweeney Todd. In 2016 his book ‘The Faceless Ghost’ was nominated for the prestigious Eisner Book Awards, and received a medal in the 2016 ‘Independent Publisher Book Awards’. He was awarded a medal in the 10th ‘International Manga Awards’ by the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs – the first British person to receive this award.

He has given talks on Gekiga style manga and AX in the USA, UK and Japan, to try to increase knowledge of mature, literary style manga. He has received several grants from both the English arts council and the Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation in support of his publications. In general, Wilson has attempted to do comic books that are different from the normal superhero/fantasy brands, working with a variety of ‘non-comic book’ organisations in the process. His book with War on Want, ‘Iraq: Operation Corporate Takeover’ was reported on by a variety of mainstream agencies – such as Reuters, CCTV in China and several Middle Eastern magazines.

Websites:  Twitter: @SeanMichaelWord

*-the price was taken from and on the current date. The price might change at the time of your purchase. The links used in this post for book purchases are affiliates.

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