“Away From Here” – Clover (Manga) – 4/10 Sugar Cubes

A painter paints pictures on canvas. But musicians paint their pictures on silence. ~Leopold Stokowski

Genre: Fantasy/Romance/Shoujo

Review Status: Full (4 Volumes/ 4 Volumes)

Licensed: Licensed in the US

Art: Minimal. While it is CLAMP, and it is very clean and easy to look at, it also seems like a midpoint in their styles, from early CLAMP to the style they’re known for today. It’s still very nice, though.

Summary: In a futuristic world, the government has conducted secret research called the ‘Clover Project’. Each Clover is tattooed with a power level by the Five Elders Council. Sue is a Four Leaf Clover, the only one in existence. Ran is a Three Leaf, one of two. Gingetsu is Two Leaf and Oruha is One Leaf. Each book tells a different tale of these tragic children, backtracking from when Kazuhiko takes Sue to Fairy Park to when Ran becomes Gingetsu’s ward.

Kazuhiko is a former soldier turned private eye who is giving the mission of picking up and delivering Sue to Fairy Park. Sue is part of a race of children called Clovers who are children with special powers, and in this futuristic world, the government is out to control them. (From ANN.com)

Review: The keyword for this manga is Minimalist. This story is told with the least amount of pictures and words possible. I find it amazing that they were still able to fill four volumes with what they had, but….

In any case, this was a decent manga. You got a look into the backgrounds of many of the characters, but as little as possible. However, that doesn’t seem to detract much from how sad they all are. Even so, much of the story had been stripped away, from the history between Kazuhiko and the military, the politics of what was going on, even what had happened in the world that had obviously been ravaged by some sort of disaster.

The one thing that apparently gives a lot of symbolism to the story is the song that Sue wrote and was sung by Kazuhiko’s former girlfriend. The lyrics are very nice, and it’s practically on every page, giving a melancholy undertone/narrative to the story that’s happening.

Even with all of this, there were too many unanswered questions about what was going on, who people were, and what the overall message was for me to be satisfied with this brief foray into the future.

Overall, too existential for my tastes, but if you’re looking for something philosophical then this might be for you.

: 14+, if this style appeals to you. There’s violence, some blood, implied death.

Others you might like (instead?): Try some of CLAMP’s other works- perhaps Tsubasa Chronicles or XXXHolic (pronounced ‘Holic’), or even Chobits, gives some more background and some existential questions to go along with it.
Planetes (manga and anime)


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Neane
    Dec 04, 2011 @ 07:13:47

    Most underrated of CLAMP's manga.


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