There is a legend that one can gain immortality by consuming a mermaid’s flesh. It’s not a legend. On his quest to find a mermaid, Yuta stumbles across a strange village and is quickly murdered. But he can’t die!
Mermaid Saga (Volume 1) – A Mermaid Never Smiles
More than five hundred years have passed since Yuta ate the flesh of a mermaid. He was the only one to survive and since then, he’s never seen another like him. His quest is to find a mermaid so that he can undo his endless life. Immortality can be very lonely. However, in an isolated village, he finds a girl who has been bedridden since birth. When the other inhabitants try to kill him, he kidnaps Mana and uses her to ensure his escape.
Soon, he learns that Mana is just like him. She has consumed the flesh of a mermaid and survived. The village was populated by mermaids who needed an immortal to ensure their eternal youth. To do that, they just needed to consume Mana’s flesh. When she learnt this, she was horrified. The fact that they had been trying to create an immortal for decades and every other child had died or become a Lost Soul is pretty terrifying.
Yuta helps Mana escape from the village and together they go on an adventure to find a way to change their fate, although, that seems like it could be impossible. At least, they now have each other for company. Of course, Mana is new to this whereas Yuta has centuries of experience and memories to call on.
What did you think?
I was lucky enough that my library has the collector’s editions of Mermaid Saga. Coming in at two three-hundred and sixty-plus pages each, they are equivalent to four regular volumes. Anyhow, this series was first released back in 1993 and as such has a wonderful charm to it that reminds me of my youth. This is the style of manga and anime I grew up with. Sure, it’s not as detailed as many of the works today, but there’s something alive about the style. Basically, I loved it.
The story was surprisingly dark too. I picked it up knowing nothing of the story and only having the cover to go by. From that, I would have guessed a romance. There are romantic elements, but this is not a romance. It’s a dark horror with monsters, both in fantastic and human form. Every time you think you’ve got a handle on what’s going to happen in the arcs, it manages to twist things in a slightly darker fashion. I was really impressed with the way it told the story and kept me guessing all the way to the end. I’m looking forward to the next volume, which is sadly the last one.