Demon Slayer has become a huge franchise, breaking records around the globe. The anime is still coming out, but the manga series has been completed, and VIZ Media is offering a complete boxset.
The box set (which costs $199.99) contains all twenty-three volumes of the manga, plus a booklet and a double-sided poster. $199.99 isn’t exactly cheap, but with each manga volume going at $9.99, it will cost $229.77 if you get the twenty-three volumes separately. So this is the better deal if you don’t already have the series.
Demon Slayer opens with Tanjiro Kondo trying desperately to save his sister, Nezuko. Tanjiro is a compelling and likable protagonist, and his strength in the face of grief and suffering make him inspiring. (There have been theories that part of the reason Demon Slayer has done so well during the pandemic is that people relate and feel inspired by Tanjiro’s dedication in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds.) His father was already dead, and a demon kills all of the rest of his family, except for a sister left behind as a newly born demon. Tanjiro is dedicated to turning his sister back into a human, and getting revenge against the demon that attacked his family.
Demon Slayer has your typical shonen fare for the Hero’s Journey: a young man who must train and learn and go down an arduous but righteous path. However, it stands out from other shonen titles. It flows well, it has both high drama and humorous moments, and its characters are individuals. It has twists and turns and mysteries, and plenty of violence and gore. It’s well-paced. While it may not be the most brilliant or best manga out there (points some people gripe about when seeing its bestselling status), there is clearly a reason why it’s popular. This is recommended for fans of Demon Slayer who want to own the whole series but who don’t already and would also be a good purchase for libraries wanting more manga on their shelves.
Story & Art: Koyoharu Gotouge
Publisher: VIZ Media
Danica Davidson is the author of the bestselling Manga Art for Beginners with artist Melanie Westin, and its sequel, Manga Art for Intermediates, with professional Japanese mangaka Rena Saiya. Check out her other comics and books at www.danicadavidson.com.