Abara Complete Deluxe Edition Review

Writting and art by: Tsutomu Nihei
Published by: Viz Media


Abara is definitely not for the faint of heart. It is a beautiful and gory tale. Even with the black and white art style, the blood and violence translates in a very graphic manner. The use of realistic violence and detailed battles helps show the severity of the situation. The details in Abara is a double edge sword and can make it hard to follow the story at times. This can create the dreaded flipping pages back and forth to try and catch anything the reader may have missed.

Abara takes place in a dystopian world where the earth’s environment has been destroyed. Humans live in cities only connected by trains. Everything seems normal except for the secret government association known as The ObservationAbara Bureau. They are seldom heard from except on the business relating to Gaunas or the Mausoleums.

The focus of the story are the Gaunas. They are humans that have transformed into creatures that have bone like armor around their bodies. The White Gaunas are when people turn into these monsters. They are known as the end of civilization because they consume humans an wreak everything in their path. Unlike the white, Black Gaunas are aware of their humanity. These creatures are created in a lab. The only 2 we know of were transformed in childhood. This makes them be clearer thinking monsters, able to be sent on missions to kill White Gaunas. They are still extremely dangerous though because they still eat humans.

Abara starts the reader by seeing a White Gauna Transformation. It sets a dramatic stage for meeting our main characters. Tadohomi asks Denji’s help to take down this new White Gauna. Having a strong past relationship, Denji agrees to transform into a Black Gauna to help. Risking his life and freedom to help her and the city. We learn Tadohomi is the daughter of the director to The Observation bureau. She also knows Denji from his childhood transformation in the lab.

Within the first part of the manga, there is much more action than dialogue that causes many questions and misunderstandings. The second part of Abara however, answers those questions and gives meaning to everything, showing that everything was intentional. It might be necessary to read the manga a few times to get the the whole story. Then again, that happens in all mediums of good storytelling. Behind the severe violence and fighting in this manga, the reader may experience a greater mystery unraveling before their eyes. All the questions Abara gives you are answered in a way that feels organic. This the complete deluxe edition puts in it all in one volume.  

The Complete Deluxe Edition of Abara is a beautiful hard back with several colored inserts and fold out pages. The color and feel of the inserts are a great addition to an amazing book. It adds extra depth to the art. The original style of black and white manga panels from 2016 is untouched. It keeps the original intention behind the art alive. Only bringing color into full art pieces to enhance the experience. 

This manga includes 2 parts containing a total of 11 extensive chapters. They even put in the Digimortal, which is 2 chapters that came as extra content when part 2 was originally released. This Edition has the whole story and more in one place.

If you already love Abara or like Seinen manga, check this out. You don’t have to worry about buying multiple books and you get all the extras! Its a in depth story that can be a bit challenging to read. But, the story and art is worth it.