In Toonopolis: Gemini we were introduced to many characters fleetingly and in such circumstances the hope is often – with a good character at least – that you will get to know a little more. Here is an ideal opportunity with Anchihiiroo – Origin of an Antihero (Toonopolis Shorts, #1).
In this novella we encounter Yoshi, a child whose family is tragically struck down in the war between the pirates and the ninjas. He is saved and begins training to become a great hero, with the guidance of the sarcastic but caring phoenix, Suzaku.
The tale charts Yoshi’s training and rise to heroic stance and then looks beyond to the choices that lead him to become the ultimate anti-hero.
Despite being a tie-in to Toonopolis: Gemini, you could easily read and enjoy this either before or after that book, with neither tale being spoilt for it. And, as with Toonopolis: Gemini, Rodden has weaved a wonderful tale with interesting references, flawed but hilarious characters and dramatic events.
I’m not sure many writers could get away with calling a beautiful, mythical phoenix Suzaku or manage to involve both ninjas and pirates in what is actually quite a tragic story but Rodden manages to make it seem effortless. This, in many ways, lacks the regular hilarity of Toonpolis: Gemini but certainly has its high moments. However, don’t be mistaken by the comic cover and the fun that is promised within: this is also a sad tale.This review was originally published on Book Bags and Cat Naps. I received a copy of this book in exchange for my fair and honest review. I did not receive any additional compensation and all views are my own.