Vol 1: To Till
By Chiho Saito
Created by Be-Papas
Viz Media, 2003
3 (out of 5) STARS
Utena Tenjou had a tragic childhood - her parents died when she was young, and she almost drowned, had it not been for her prince who came and rescued her. Because of the impact this prince had on her life, Utena strives to be just like him - to grow up to be a prince, not a princess, and to spread nobility, ultimately finding her prince and bringing revolution. (http://www.animenews.com)
This was an enjoyable manga read. The main character Utena has decided to grow up to be a prince, not a princess. She is still beautiful and feminine but most of her interests and activities are more active and masculine. She doesn’t want to be protected; she wants to do the protecting. I think this provides a great message to the typical female audience that reads josie manga. Utena does want to find the man that rescued her when she was a little girl and this desire does direct much of her behavior. But I like that she is not bemoaning her fate and a helpless female.
The artwork is black and white, though the cover is done in color. Utena is drawn and portrayed as delicate and this appearance often deceives others to believe she is timid. The illustrations are inked considerably more during pivotal darker sequences of the story. This helps bring out the more villainous characters. I really enjoy having illustrations within a story to add to the depth of the storyline.
Read some reviews of the book here: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/14078.Revolutionary_Girl_Utena_Vol_1