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Warriors of Legend : Reflections of Japan in Sailor Moon Paperback – 16 May 2005

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Product details

  • Paperback: 148 pages
  • Publisher: Booksurge Publishing (16 May 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1419608142
  • ISBN-13: 978-1419608148
  • Product Dimensions: 13.3 x 0.9 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 50,630 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Naoko Takeuchi is one of the Japanese manga industry's greatest success stories. Read the first page
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By George Hutcheon on 8 Aug. 2005
Format: Paperback
Part of the appeal of anime, as opposed to American or British animation, is that it offers an insight into a different and unfamiliar culture. Some viewers will pick up on more cultural references than others, but even the most veteran anime fan will occasionally be perplexed by an unfamiliar concept, or left cold by a gag that doesn't translate. Warriors of Legend uses this as the basis for an engaging and informative journey through Japanese cultural quirks via anime.
The anime in this case is Sailor Moon: an ideal choice, since not only is it relatively well-known here in the West, but it is also based in a real part of Tokyo. Many of the places that are seen in the Sailor Moon anime and manga are either real, or based on real places. For a Sailor Moon fan, it's a joy to read about the real history behind buildings and businesses that are glimpsed in the series.
Later, the book moves on to discuss more general cultural phenomena that appear in the series. Why does Ami, a genius, feel that it's necessary to attend a cram school? What do Rei's duties as a shrine maiden really entail? And why is Makoto's height enough to make her a social outcast? All of these questions are answered in a friendly yet always informative manner. Even the most dedicated Sailor Moon fan is bound to find something new here (I was personally fascinated by the accounts of the stunned reaction to the first season's unexpectedly violent finale). The authors have done a fantastic job, and I can't recommend this book highly enough.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Naomi Millar on 4 Aug. 2005
Format: Paperback
First of all, don't be fooled by the '1 used/new' thing. There's plenty to be had, it's just a quirk of the way Booksurge works.
As for the book, I found it very enjoyable and informative. The book's in two main parts, a section on the locations of Sailor Moon and how they relate not only to the real life locations, but also how they relate to the creator Naoko Takeuchi and to the animators of the Anime. The second part deals with the aspects of the characters lives, such as family life and religion.
At the beginning there also a useful summary of the Sailor Moon series and a glossary of names and terms involved so that even those who are not fans of Sailor Moon can still get something out of the book. All you need is an interest in Japan.
The style of writing is also easy to read, informative, but not academic (this isn't a boring textbook-style thing). I made my way through it quickly (in a good way ^_^ ), but I still find myself having a flick now and then.
If this book does well, there is a possibility of more in the series. I, for one, hope this is case ^_^
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Format: Paperback
A very interesting read about the cultural background of Sailor Moon and how Japan and Japanese society are reflected through the characters of the sailor senshi and their friends. A must for fans of the series, but also for anyone wishing to study how manga and anime show and critique Japanese society.
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Format: Paperback
I am so glad this is available in the UK, I had to get mine imported. I love this book, it is so insightful! It is a must read if you are a Sailor Moon fan even more so if you want to learn about Japan, Tokyo and/or Japanese culture.
I definately recommend this book!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 52 reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Warriors of Legend makes it to New Zealand intact. 4 Jun. 2005
By La Déesse - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Okay! My copy of WoL arrived in the post this morning. The packaging indicated that it had come directly from Booksurge's Australian branch, which explains why it wasn't very expensive to ship to me ($5.80 in US dollars). I was very pleased about that as I wanted to support the publication but was afraid it might put more of a dent in my fortune than I was prepared for. (The cost of getting things shipped to New Zealand has always curtailed my anime and manga collections, although now that I have a real job that isn't such a restriction as it was when I was a student.) It was securely packed in cardboard and plastic wrap, and reached me in fine shape. I'm a pretty fast reader in my leisure time, and finished it while getting my hair cut this afternoon.

Early Thoughts: As an 'unauthorised' publication (clearly marked as such on the front cover) WoL offers an independent and unvarnished view of the Sailor Moon legend and its connections with real life in Japan, which is wonderful, but for the same reason, and the necessity to publish relatively cheaply, it suffers from a lack of colourful pictures, which would help bring to life the real Japanese locations it describes, and of course it cannot reproduce any art from the original anime and manga. This reduces its accessibility to readers who are not already familiar with the appearance of the Sailor Moon characters (and may not understand their appeal), and makes it impossible to run side by side comparisons of locations and objects as shown in the series and their real-world counterparts.

This, and some typographical errors of the kind I would expect to find in a small-press publication, are the only real cavils I have about what is otherwise a well written guide, which does a very nice job of balancing the interests of established Sailor Moon fans and readers who know less about the series but are curious about Japan. A slim volume, it provides some fascinating information and leaves the reader wanting to know more, and hopefully the authors' plans to publish a series will pan out.

I was particularly interested in the background information about decision-making on the anime and manga series, and the explanation offered for Takeuchi's lack of productive focus post-Sailor Moon. I would not hesitate to recommend this title to fans of Naoko Takeuchi's work. Non-fans would be understandably less likely to pick it up in a bookshop, but with a little persuasion from a fan might find it very worthwhile.
21 of 25 people found the following review helpful
Peels away the layers, exposing the messages underneath 30 May 2005
By Jason - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This book has proven to be a well-informed and quick look at Japanese culture and society. The information found within could have been delivered with a textbook-like dryness, however, the fact that the authors used a well-known series like Sailor Moon helps to make the information very relatable, and easy to absorb.

At first glance, the show is merely fictional and full of fantasy. Beneath the surface, however, there is much commentary on Japanese society that one, as a foriegner, may not be able to easily decipher. This book, by examining the series from an anthropological stance, helps to peel away the layers, exposing the hidden messages underneath.

Warriors of Legend almost effortlessly draws parallels between scenery seen in the animated series to real-life locales in Tokyo. Family life and culture as depicted in the show are shown to be direct reflections of Japanese attitudes and beliefs. Of particular interest are the essays on religion and how lines between faiths in Japan are often blurred. All of these concepts have been present in the show, but often go unnoticed to average person.

The book itself is a little bit rough around the edges. That being said, it gets the job done as a nice introduction to the Japanese mindset and way of life.
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
An exellent addition to any otaku bookshelf 10 May 2006
By morganskye - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I really enjoyed this book. It's in-depth, informative, and it never talks down to you. It's made for the hardcore Sailormoon fan. I think it's terrific that this book was made. It shows that fans can think outside of the tv screen.

I've been a Sailormoon fan for many years, yet there were things in this book that I never knew. It's like you're walking down the streets of Japan. Anyone who calls themselves a Sailormoon otaku needs this book!
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
A tour of Tokyo, courtesy of the Sailor Team 27 Jun. 2005
By S. Schiissler - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Sailor Moon, while having its roots in fantasy, contained a realism to it that has made it a fascinating series to watch. That realism almost made it feel like the main characters in the show were living in the same world as you were. This is the first book about Sailor Moon to take a look at the more realistic elements of the show that have played an important role in making the series a big hit worldwide.

The first part of the book shows how the city of Tokyo, in particular the Minato Ward district, has had an influence on the Sailor Moon story. Several real life landmarks have made their way into the plotline of the story, and this book takes a look at how these landmarks has played a role in the shaping of the characters lives. The book also looks at has how these landmarks have had an influence on the creation of the various stories in Sailor Moon, both by Naoko Takeuchi and the animation staff. An avid Sailor Moon fan will find themselves going back to their DVD library in no time to check out these landmarks!

The second part of the book looks at how the daily culture of Japan has made its way into the characters lives. The reader begins to understand the pressures that the Sailor Soldiers would be experiencing if they were real life people living in Japan. We also look at how the show critiques the daily culture of Japan (including among other things, education and religion) through the Sailor Soldiers. We also learn how Japan inspired some of the trademarks and imagery of the Sailor Moon series, such as the Sailor Team's introductory speeches and the concept of the futuristic Crystal Tokyo.

Overall, this book offers a fresh look at one of the biggest and well-known anime series of all time. If you are a fan of Sailor Moon, or if you are a fan of Japanese culture, this book is an essential read. Buy this book, and let your tour of the Sailor Moon universe begin!
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
A must own for any Sailor Moon fan 29 Mar. 2007
By Keiko Tanaka - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I just received my copy of WoL and am pleased to say that I am very happy with its content. In fact, my only real complaint is I thought they could've spent a little more time covering topics regarding all of the senshi and not just specifically on Ami, Minako, and Usagi, who received most of the attention (not to discredit that though because all the information was excellent!). Makoto, Haruka, and Rei each recieved a small (but decent) amount of coverage but I felt like Michiru, Setsuna, and Hotaru were a little left out. However, I read somewhere that the authors are working on a second WoL book so we have a chance to look forward to more info into the world of Japan through SM in the future.

The book is very approachable not only to fans of Sailor Moon but to people interested in Japanese culture. I consider myself to be a very large and informed SM fan but I found myself discovering things I never had a clue about! Who knew that in ancient mythology Venus (in the form of Ishtar) and the Moon were so closely connected? Or how about how each of the senshi embody a different way of life in Japan.

WoL really opened my eyes to the extreme amount of detail Naoko Takeuchi and the animators of Sailor Moon put into the manga and anime and eventually into the Live Action series. People don't realize how much Japanese culture is embedded into the series- it's literally mind blowing!

So with all that being said, I would definitely recommend purchasing this book if you would like further insight into the world of Sailor Moon.
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