Yokaiden 2

“Yokaiden 2” (2009). Published by Del Rey Manga

Ages 13+
Art and script by Nina Matsumoto (me!)

Yokai are Japanese spirits, and young Hamachi is fascinated by them. Now he continues his quest deep into the Yokai realm in the hopes of finding Madkap, the kappa (water spirit) he believes has killed his grandmother. Armed with nothing but a sacred rope and a lucky kappa’s foot, Hamachi has made two friends to help him on his journey: Lumi the talking lantern, and newly awakened, the umbrella that once belonged to his grandfather! (Don’t ask.)

Their first stop is the home of the legendary fox spirit the Ninetails, who promises to help in Hamachi’s quest if Hamachi can retrieve three lost items. But can Hamachi really find them, or does the Ninetails just want Hamachi to fail so he can keep the human boy as a pet?


Yokaiden is a synthesis of the North American tradition of retelling fairytales via comics […] along with European roots of those stories, along with yokai folklore and ghost stories, along with elements that are purely Matsumoto. It’s not simply a shonen hero’s odyssey into a den of Japanese spirits, restaged for an English speaking audience. Nor is it slavishly following any of the patterns from which it is drawing. It’s its own chimera of those inspirations.
-Scott Green, Ain’t It Cool News

“It’s always nice to see a creator with a real facility for wit, and Matsumoto’s manifests itself in words and pictures.”
-David Welsh, Precocious Curmudgeon

“The best OEL manga currently running? Very possibly.”
-Serdar Yegulap, Advanced Media Network Anime

“The artwork in Yokaiden 2 is, if anything, more stunning than that of its predecessor: Mastumoto demonstrates a mastery of line width, an evocatively delicate use of grays, and a bold deployment of blacks while avoiding the shortcuts in draftsmanship that can mar even the most popular manga.”
-Peter Gutierrez, Graphic Novel Reporter

“When one thinks of comic books drawn in the ‘Manga style’ they often think of two-bit artists […] using the ‘Manga Style’ as a crutch to get the attention of publishers. That mental image, however […] is something that does not apply to Yokaiden and to dismiss it with such an ill-informed sentiment will ultimately cheat yourself out of a read more than worthy of your time.
-Conanthe3rd, Anime UK News

“[…] it is highly imaginative, has a diverse story and characters, and the art is unique and captivating. This is a manga with a lot of new talent behind it, and an obvious drive to produce something entertaining. Definitely pick it up and give this one a try.”
-Scott Campbell, active Anime

Yokaiden is the kind of fantastically told story that really makes you hate the fact that there is a last page.”
-Leroy Douresseaux, Comic Book Bin

“Rendering supernatural creatures is tough, because you don’t have real-life models, yet she manages to make an umbrella, a one-legged lizard, and an angel-like tengu all come to life in convincing ways.”
-Brigid Alverson, MangaBlog

Yokaiden is silly, adventurous, well drawn, and lots of fun to read.”
-Michael C. Lorah, Newsarama

Yokaiden 2 is an excellent continuation to an OEL (original English language) manga series which gives Japanese folk traditions a modern twist.”
-Sarah Boslaugh, PLAYBACK:stl

More reviews of Yokaiden 2 at Amazon, Chapters and Goodreads!