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on 19 May 2014
I'm a new Rurouni Kenshin fan and I discovered it when I saw the trailer for the second (Kyoto Fire) live action movie which is going to be release in august - and looks amazing I might add. Anyway I then decided to watch the first movie and from there I wanted to know the original material so I started watching the anime(I'm at episode 38) and started reading the manga. The result of this is that Rurouni Kenshin has become my fav anime and manga of all time(along with Fate/Zero). So needless to say that I adore the manga. I love Nobuhiro's art and it actually get's better the farther in you're in the story not that it's bad to begin with. The art is really charming and does a great job at making the comody moments all the more fun and also suits the more serious parts of the story and the battles look amazing.

Okay on to the book itself. The book contains the first three volumes of the manga along with two special chapters and aditional stuff like The Secret Life of Characters where Nobuhiro Watsuki explains how the different characters came to be, colered images in the back(usually 3), a whole chapter in color(which is kind of mean, because then you don't want the beautiful colors to stop!), and a glossary of the restoration which is quite good to help you see the whole political picture of the story if you're not so familiar with Japan's story in that period to begin with.

The story in general has a great blend of action, comedy, and a bit of romance to keep almost everyone entertained with a great set of characters that I adore as Kenshin himself, Sanosuke, Megumi, Kaoru to name a few! This book is mostly "just" the introduction to all the main characters, but still a nice and fun introduction with a good amoun of homour and action to keep your attention. The book is rather large with over 500 pages and weighs about 1 kg. It's not that big of a problem and I probably just lack muscles in my arms, but it can get rather heavy to hold the book so it easier to read it with something like a table to help take some of the weight off your arms - but still it's not a "real" problem.

All in all if your a manga fan or new to manga in generel then you should really give this legend of a manga a chance especially when you get them in so good quallity for a nice price in the Vizbig edition - btw the paper is also a really good quality!
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Picture this: a feminine-looking, goofy swordsman who has vowed not to kill, but is secretly a lethal ex-assassin known as Hitokiri Battosai.

Yep, the title character of "Rurouni Kenshin" is a pretty unusual male lead for an action series. The first VIZBIG volume of Nobuhiro Watsuki's classic manga series -- containing the first three volumes of the manga) has some initial awkwardness as it introduces the main characters, but it's got plenty of action, plenty of delightfully wacky humor and a teeny hint of romance. Okay, more than a hint.

Searching for Hitokiri Battosai, a young dojo owner named Kaoru assaults a sword-carrying stranger... and promptly whips his butt. Turns out his sword blade is upside-down, and he insists that "this one is merely a rurouni... a traveling swordsman with no destination." Unfortunately someone using that name is disgracing Kaoru's dojo -- and they have their eyes on taking it over. It's only then that the mysterious Kenshin shows what he's really capable of.

Kaoru asks him to stay on, and it turns out to be a good thing -- the dojo becomes embroiled in the fate of a feisty young samurai boy, who's being used as a pickpocket for a gang of thugs, then with some cowardly ex-students. But the real dangers are when the town is visited by a deadly assassin who somehow paralyzes his victims, and takes Kaoru hostage to bring out Kenshin's full ferocity. And there's the Fight Merchant Zanza (real name: Sanosuke), a powerful young man seeking fights with strong opponents who is hired to fight Kenshin. But both have personal reasons to want to defeat Kenshin as well.

And Kenshin and Sanosuke end up in a particularly nasty situation when they rescue a young woman pursued by thugs... and it has something to do with a very potent, deadly kind of opium. To rescue her, they charge into the mansion of the wealthy Kanryu, who has hired some deadly bodyguards of his own -- the Oniwabanshu.

Nobuhiro Watsuki's "Rurouni Kenshin" has become a classic for its haunted pasts, explosive action and a wide array of antagonists -- some of whom don't stay that way, like Sanosuke. The first VIZBIG volume starts off fairly light-hearted by comparison, but gradually gains some darker shadings. Watsuki starts dipping into the darker side of life (such as Yahiko's miserable life and the) and the sociopolitical strife of the era (Sanosuke's tragic captain Sagara).

Obviously any series with a swordsman is going to have some action, and Watsuki delivers a whirlwind of sword blows and superhuman leaps, which can do anything from smashing an opponent's arm to slamming his head through the ceiling. But there's also plenty of comic relief in here, usually supplied by Kaoru's short fuse and Kenshin's space-cadet attitude ("... but now you've got nowhere to go!" "Hmm... so persistent... what can one do but surrender?")

Kenshin is a pretty likable if odd hero -- he's goofy, spacey, eager to please and polite to a fault, as well as being skinny and pretty-faced. But he gets creepy empty eyes when he starts fighting, and when Kaoru is threatened he becomes a deadly force to be reckoned with. Kaoru makes a good counterpart, being as blunt and strong-willed as Kenshin pretends not to be, while Yahiko is an unexpectedly likable younger sidekick. And Sanosuke makes a good later addition -- he's got a tragic past as part of the unjustly-maligned Sekihotai "false army," which still drives him on.

The VIZBIG edition is a pretty solid piece of work -- good binding, nice paper, some gorgeously vibrant color pages, and it contains the full content of the first three volumes (including the short story that the series was eventually based on). It's also larger, which makes it easier to read if someone were to find the usual pages too small.

The VIZBIG edition "Rurouni Kenshin Volume 1" is a solid start to an excellent series, as it introduces us to the legendary Battosai and his first round of adventures in late 19th-century Tokyo. Definitely a good read -- and it gets better.
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on 29 January 2008
Set 150 years ago, Japan has just come out of a terrible civil war and is trying to take itself in a new direction. But there are many people who are all to willing to hold on to the fuedal past.

Kenshin is a vagabond, he played an important part in the civil war as the rebels Hitokiri, an assassin of sorts. But now armed with a reverse blade he is trying to make ammends for his past.

This takes in the opening story of Kenshin through to what could be considered the first major storyline and first major rival to Kenshin.

Rurouni Kenshin is a classic manga series. Originally published in Shounen Jump between 1995 to 1999, it was a beautifully drawn and well told story, that to many westerners, had not been told before. Set in the transition period between the end of the shogun to the role it played in becoming a world power again. Many of the characters portrayed in this series are based on real historical characters (but being an action series at heart some are much further away from the truth than others).

This book itself is the first in hopefully a long line of new collections from Viz Communications. This is the first book in the Vizbig line. There are several differences to the originally published version by Viz.

First is the size. It is somewhat larger in size than your standard manga collection. It is more the size of a DVD case. Also the paper quality is much better than the original imprint. Then there is the fact that this actually collects together the first three volumes. This means the collection will be complete in about 9 volumes.

The most important addition is the re-instatement of the colour pages. In the original Shonen Jump runs, each comic would get a chance to have some of the pages shown in colour. The first thing to warn you of though, is don't expect to see the same sort of quality that you would see in a marvel or dc comic. These are good old fashioned 8 colour pages. In this first volume there is only about 15 pages of color (some in the first story and then reprints of the original covers without any logo or text on it).

All in all this is an excellent start to the new line, either if you are an existing fan or just looking for something different then this is well worth a look.
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on 22 August 2013
Already knew Rurouni Kenshin from the anime, however the Manga version really stands out from the anime.

Great art. Every character is well designed and action scenes come out of the book.
The story is very good, and this edition comes with very nice insights from the author about the lifes of the characters that you would never know just by watching the anime.

The edition is of very good quality. First few pages are coloured which is lovely!
A must buy to every fan of Hitokiri Battousai!!!!
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on 18 June 2016
If you love the anime you'll love the manga. This is great value with three volumes in one, and the coloured pages at the beginning look amazing.
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on 25 October 2013
Awesome good quality, looks like the pictures, really good collection. Good quality low price.
I will recomend this product to my friends
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on 8 July 2014
Its good
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