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Kieli, Vol. 1 (novel): The Dead Sleep in the Wilderness (Anglais) Broché – 14 juillet 2009

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Biographie de l'auteur

Yukako Kabei is a Japanese novelist. She graduated from Gakushuin University with a degree in Business Management from the Faculty of Economics.

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8 internautes sur 8 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Fantastic novel. 5 juillet 2009
Par phoinos - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
Many of the previous reviews are for the manga version of this series. I highly recommend the manga as well, as it is a faithful reproduction of this novel and has great artwork.

As for the novel:

As the summary states: Kieli is a young, orphaned girl with the ability to see ghosts. This has made her a bit of a social outcast at her school. Then one day she runs into Harvey, another young man with the same ability, and the Corporal, a ghost who has possessed an old beat-up radio. This is the first time she's ever met anyone else who can see the things she does, so she ends up following them, curious and longing for answers.

The novel itself is a quick but very enjoyable read. The characters are very interesting and complex. The short length of the book limits too much character development, but there really is a good amount of it here for a light novel. The description is vivid and it was incredibly easy for me to fall into the world of Kieli and "see" what was happening. But what was most surprising to me were the occasionally deep comments scattered throughout the story. Despite her young age, Kieli is disillusioned by what she alone has been able to see, and she has a rather jaded view of the hypocrisy of the religious society she lives in. The bond that forms between Kieli and Harvey is unlikely and yet stronger because of it, as they both offer each other something that they'd never really had before. It's a great story that I really couldn't help but get immersed in, and I couldn't put down the book until I'd finished. Now I can't wait for the next volume to be released!

The book itself is nice production-wise. There are some beautiful color pages, one for each chapter title page, at the front. Interspersed throughout the book are illustrations, as is customary for light novels.

I highly recommend this for anyone who enjoys steam-punk, sci-fi, or really anyone who enjoys good stories with interesting characters.
4 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Courtesy of The Figment Review at Figment[dot]com 28 avril 2011
Par The Figment Review - Publié sur Amazon.com
by Matt Reeves

A good book can be magical. It can take you to places you never dreamed of, introduce you to characters you've never met before and capture your imagination so steadily you'd never depart from it. A good book can do just that. On that note though, not all books are good and some manage to find a middle ground that is less than welcoming.

When I came across Kieli, an original Japanese Young Adult novel recently brought over by Yen Press, I was instantly intrigued by it's apparent mix of science fiction and subtle theology. With nothing to lose, and as is much the case with books, much to gain, I picked myself up a copy and began to delve into the mass of pages.

Kieli is the somewhat complicated tale of a girl, an undead soldier, a haunted radio and God. Set far in the future after humanity has left Earth to colonize a new planet for their home, the story centers on a young girl named Kieli who lives under the jurisdiction of the Church. What makes this girl so special however are two secrets she keeps. One is the fact that she has come to the realization that God is not to be found in the ruling religion, a realization for which her family taught her well to hide at an early age. The second is that she can see the ghosts of individuals who have refused to pass on. Attending a boarding school along with her roommate, the spirit of a classmate who died a number of years back, she lives a somewhat mundane life, that is until she meets Harvey. Then things get a bit complicated. Why? Well, Harvey is an Undying, an immortal soldier bred for war and now wanted dead by the Church. To be blunt, he's a fugitive. To complicate matters further, he's on a mission to put to rest the trapped soul of a corporal which currently resides in an old radio. Seeing this as a chance to see the world that lays beyond her sights, she joins the two much to the soldiers dismay and and boards a train. But with the authorities searching high and low for the emotionally distant man, danger lurks in the wilderness.

Mixing science fiction, paranormal fantasy and dashes of religion, Kieli attempts to be both entertaining and thought provoking. Written as a contest entry, it was Yukako Kabei's debut novel, written, according to his afterward, as he heard the sounds of the passing trains outside. Well written prose and pleasant artwork compliment this compelling tale of life, loss, and friendship.

To be blunt, it's really quite good, especially on the writing front. However, there's just one problem.

The pacing.

Almost the entire book moves at the speed of a snail with virtually nothing plot heavy happening until the final act. Instead, readers are subjected to a series of stops during their journey that occur each chapter. These read off much like small short stories and usually revolve around a ghost which Kieli can see. While this sounds like a fine premise to fill pages with, the problem readers soon discover is that these encounters, most notably one found in the middle of the story, are almost virtually useless to the plot as a whole and to the ghosts themselves.

Truly, this is one of the biggest faults this novel sports, far above any other. Because of this slow and needless pacing that makes up most of the story, readers find themselves nearly begging the author to make something happen. When that something finally does, it is far too fleeting and brief.

The fact is, Kieli is a debut novel in the worst sort of way. It shows a large amount of talent and potential for the new author, but also tons of room for growth.

Many readers will in all likelihood find themselves torn within over how they feel about this story. On the one hand, the ending is dramatic and leaves you wanting more, but on the other, the story is slow and readers will be left wondering whether it's worth proceeding.

To conclude, Kieli is a book series that might possibly grow into something spectacular. As the author improves his rough yet talented writing skills and polishes the direction of his plot, he may yet surprise readers. But regardless of whether people will be persuaded to continue the series after this first volume, I believe that everyone towards the end of this book will find themselves in the same position as Kieli; reflecting on their lives and the ones in it.
2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Wonderful light novel! 13 novembre 2009
Par Lexie - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
Interestingly I found that I liked Kieli a little better because she didn't immediately gloom onto Harvey as it seems in the manga. I didn't sense her feelings about Harvey (the slight misgivings and such) in the manga as much as in the novel. Also Becca seems more...apparent. Her actions and reactions to things and Kieli's misunderstanding of things.

The translation is pretty good as far as I can see. At times it seems a little stilted, but I'm not sure if that's because the translator wanted to go for accuracy vs. readability or if the author wrote in such a fashion to begin with. The book has an almost dreamlike pace--each event floating into the next without any trouble, but seeming to exist outside of time (only a week passes during their travels, maybe a little less).

Since this is a future world topical references or cultural references are pretty non-existent. The only caveat is that Kieli is almost blasphemous in her opinions about 'God' and the planet's religious observance. The 'Church' plays a big part in the everyday society of the planet, with religion being a big focus. Kieli doubts the existence of God (in the beginning, or at least his existence on their planet) and by the end of it has two thoughts on the matter--1) that an all-knowing, treats everyone equally sort of God is useless and 2) that maybe the God the Church believes in isn't the God that exists on the planet at all.

I devoured this book in about two hours, but then its a Japanese 'Light' novel (what the Japanese consider to be a young adult novel pretty much). There is quite a bit of complexity of motivations and character emotions, so I look forward to seeing Yen Press release more of the series!
1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
A must read 23 mai 2015
Par Poet4life - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
I LOVE LOVE LOVE this book series.

I originally read the manga, not knowing that it was based off a book series. A year after I first read it, I got bored enough to read the author's note at the end(I don't normally bother with them) and found out that it's a series. I immediately went to my mom and BEGGED her to take me to the bookstore so I could buy it. I loved every part of this book, I have no complaints. (less)
"Do they think that God will stay with them forever?" 17 novembre 2014
Par para - Publié sur Amazon.com
Kieli is an isolated girl in a world where everything is controlled by the Church of a God she doesn't believe in. Driving and complicating her views and life is her odd ability to see ghosts. But soon she will meet one of the legendary Undying, perfect soldiers from the last great war made from lost technology but of no further use to Church or State, and her world will change...

The Dead Sleep in the Wilderness is an excellent, melancholy story about two complex, compelling leads in a fascinating world. I was struck right away by the illustrations at the beginning. They're gorgeous and give a very different feeling to Kieli than the manga art did. There's a more subdued air to her here. I like this design just slightly better, but a more energetic feel to the character was the right choice for the short manga series. Not super important - just something I found interesting.

The prose gets off to a impressive, slick start as the prologue (Why isn't God here?) establishes the atmosphere well and conveys a ton of information about both Kieli and her world in a few short pages. The momentum continues throughout the book. There's great intensity and atmosphere maintained and the author's pacing and general writing style makes it a smooth, gripping read. Kieli and Harvey are perfect leads, both likable yet three dimensional and flawed. The supporting cast (most notably Becca and the Corporal) are equally intriguing and contribute a lot to the story.

Another highlight is that the author is particularly great at knowing how to reveal that things didn't quite mean what they first seemed to earlier in the narrative. It adds a ton of depth and enjoyment to the already intricately layered stories. The chapters are a mixture of an overarching plot and side stories that flesh out the characters. It all unfolds naturally and builds to a strong conclusion that finishes this story while setting up the series nicely.

As should be obvious I adored this first volume of Kieli. It's right up with the Book Girl series as the best light novels I've ever read. Can't wait to see what's next.
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