Nanjing: The Burning City

Ethan Young

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Nanjing: The Burning City

Nanjing The Burning City After the bombs fell and shook the walls of Nanjing the Imperial Japanese Army entered and seized the Chinese capital Through the dust of the demolished buildings screams echo off the rubble Two aba

  • Title: Nanjing: The Burning City
  • Author: Ethan Young
  • ISBN: 9781616557522
  • Page: 283
  • Format: Hardcover
  • After the bombs fell and shook the walls of Nanjing, the Imperial Japanese Army entered and seized the Chinese capital Through the dust of the demolished buildings, screams echo off the rubble Two abandoned Chinese soldiers are trapped and desperately outnumbered inside the walled city What they ll encounter will haunt them But in the face of horror, they ll learn thatAfter the bombs fell and shook the walls of Nanjing, the Imperial Japanese Army entered and seized the Chinese capital Through the dust of the demolished buildings, screams echo off the rubble Two abandoned Chinese soldiers are trapped and desperately outnumbered inside the walled city What they ll encounter will haunt them But in the face of horror, they ll learn that resistance and bravery cannot be destroyed by the enemy.Ethan Young Tails delves into World War II s forgotten tragedy, the devastating Japanese invasion of Nanjing, and tells a heart wrenching tale of war, loss, and defiance Beautifully illustrated in black and white In Nanjing, cartoonist Ethan Young tells an intimate story against an epic landscape Bold, heart breaking, and gorgeously rendered Eisner and Printz Award winner Gene Luen Yang Boxers Saints, American Born Chinese Young s decision not to glorify violence or titillate the reader in any way avoids a common pitfall and heightens the drama This is stunning, stirring historical fiction by a creator at the height of his craft Starred review Publishers Weekly Young s is just one chapter in an overwhelmingly grievous episode of the 20th century The specifics might be fictional amidst a historical backdrop, but in creating names, depicting individual faces both living and dead, Young conjures a haunting microcosm amidst a horrifying event of epic proportions Smithsonian APAC Bookdragon Nanjing The Burning City deserves a spot alongside not only historical comics, but wartime prose and non fiction as well It s not often that an author can so skillfully evoke powerful emotion while telling a complex and long forgotten story and this book is an excellent, necessary addition to the genre The A.V Club Haunting and powerful, Nanjing is a moving tribute to an event which needs to be remembered, as much as we d like to forget it Eisner and Harvey Award winning author Derek Kirk Kim Same Difference, Tune Young s expressive, thoughtful line work takes full advantage of comics power Nanjing reads effortlessly while begging the eyes to savor each page A triumph at the very soul of the medium, a perfect marriage of Toth and Tatsumi Eisner Award winning writer artist Nate Powell March, Swallow Me Whole

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      Published :2019-01-20T03:49:06+00:00

    One thought on “Nanjing: The Burning City

    1. David Schaafsma on said:

      Of course there is now an abundance of historical studies of the assault on Nanking in the late thirties. Iris Chang's The Rape of Nanking: The Forgotten Holocaust of World War II (1997) is a great example, though controversial, and in my opinion justly celebrated. There are now many studies, some of them fictional, such as Ha Jin's work. This graphic novel looks like it may be written for younger readers, as it does not depict with any shocking detail the atrocities, but focuses on two survivor [...]

    2. Dean Simons on said:

      Full disclosure, I know a fair bit about modern Chinese history prior to reading this book. I've read about what happened during WW2, I've visited the memorial in Nanjing. My knowledge of the Nanjing massacre (often called "The Rape of Nanking") is more than the average reader of this book.As a piece this is a very well written and well crafted work. The characters feel human, the clash of old and new world are well presented in the dialogue. There are moments of moral ambiguity, as is to be exp [...]

    3. رحمان on said:

      A powerful and haunting tribute to a tragedy the world—particularly the Japanese—tends to overlook.Works like this one are important reminders of the horrors and atrocities war inflicts on us.

    4. J on said:

      I really enjoyed this historical comic. Ethan Young did a great job with the story and the art. It felt accurate to what I have read. It was fresh because I had not read any accounts from Chinese soldiers in Nanjing. He didn't have a lot of time for character development as it was a rather brief story, but I felt so much for the characters. Young really captured the fact that not all of the Japanese soldiers in Nanjing were bad, and he also really captured how brutal war is.Review before reading [...]

    5. Laura on said:

      I admit, when I picked this up, I knew a little bit about the story of the rape of Nanjing, but that was about as far as it goes. This, as most good war stories, is told from the view of a soldier in the conflict, a Chinese officer. And of course, the way war is, this does not have a happy ending. Why should it? Well, most of the books I have that are set in war have some glimmer of hope in them, that the main characters will survive, and live another day. But I'm sure the point of this book is [...]

    6. Stewart Tame on said:

      A powerful and moving war story. Except for the length, this could almost be a forgotten story from Frontline Combat or somewhere similar. Ethan Young's artwork recalls Kubert and Severin and Davis, while maintaining its own identity. This could easily have been a polemic, blood and guts and rape thrown in the reader's face. But taking a more tasteful approach gives the story more power. The worst images occur off-panel, in the mind of the reader, and are the stronger and more memorable for it. [...]

    7. Jason on said:

      Fantastic art-especially the inking. powerful contrasts and effective line work. The story is harrowing and upsetting and makes an impact without being too grotesque (which would be easy for the subject matter). Apparently this is a topic we all need to learn more about.

    8. Derek Royal on said:

      Ethan Young's story of the seizure of Nanjing is tightly woven and psychologically focused. He takes a relatively brief period of story time and pours all of his energies into that frame. A compelling story with even more impressive art. We reviewed this book on a recent episode of The Comics Alternative: comicsalternative/episode-.

    9. Andy on said:

      4.5 stars - Extraordinarily powerful story of a handful of people during the Nanjing massacre. Characterization is excellent and the storytelling contains a level of suspense that's effective without ever feeling cheap or manipulated. There's one dialogue exchange that goes on a little too long and runs the risk of pontificating, but that's really a minor quibble. I hope this gets a large readership.

    10. Elizabeth A on said:

      This graphic novel tells the tale of two Chinese soldiers trapped in Nanjng after the bombing and invasion of Japanese troops. War is hell, atrocities are committed by all sides, and everyone suffers. I liked the art in this book, and while I liked the creative way the author shows the destruction of the city and its people, there was not much new here for me. I wonder if this was targeted at a young adult audience who might have not been exposed to this story before. If that is the case, it is [...]

    11. Brian on said:

      Through outstanding artwork, you get sucked into this little bit of time with these characters. Immediately connecting with them, and deeply feeling the story to it's conclusion. The fact that it's based on a real event adds so much emotion to the story. Ethan has created something that allows us to see the horrors of war, and not forget the humanity that has to go through it.

    12. Kim on said:

      An historical fiction graphic novel about Nanjing. I heard the author speak earlier in the year and I've been looking toward reading it ever since. Although, I will say that I didn't find it nearly as adult as the author led me to believe. There are some mature themes, but it's really not something that younger people couldn't handle (and would probably get a lot out of it too).

    13. Kenny on said:

      Moving and gripping tale of two soldiers quest to survive Nanking after the KMT abandon it to the Japanese.

    14. Elle Kay on said:

      A haunting tale of evasion and survival set amongst the Nanjing Massacre. This one was well written, beautifully illustrated, and something that will stay with me for a very long time.

    15. Akira on said:

      I liked this brief glimpse into the atrocities of what occurred at Nanjing. I appreciated it’s imagery and the tug and pull play of giving you little bits of both sides. I prefer that level of truth showing the bare teeth of war as nothing clean cut. No one side is the hero or the villain. War is War an ugly and complicated chaos. Although brief and only skimming the surface it was a good introductory point for this tragedy & I will definitely be reading more on it in the future. Simple an [...]

    16. Mr. Twinkie on said:

      It is an okay read but it doesn't really differ from anything I have seen before. Neither does it go in any depth into the special case of the Nanjing Massacre. Often I wondered whether this specific event was the main focus of the story or whether the book was just a general statement about war. It is readable but nothing special.

    17. Marsha Altman on said:

      Fantastic, moving book about the battle of Nanjing, more commonly known (except to the Japanese) as the Rape of Nanking. The author manages to evoke pity but also give life to the Japanese soldiers.

    18. Rogues Portal on said:

      Nanjing: The Burning CityWriter & Artist: Ethan YoungPublisher: Dark HorseA review by Amelia WellmanI love history. World War II has been a favourite topic of mine since listening to my grandfather’s stories about his time in the military as a kid. There came a point when I believed I had learned everything I could about World War II. Then I read a book in high school (that remains to this day my favourite book) called The Devil of Nanking that covered a part of the war I’d never heard a [...]

    19. World Literature Today on said:

      "Most Americans know of the East Asian side of World War II only as a conflict between Japan and the US. Ethan Young’s graphic novel sets out to raise our awareness of this horrifically violent period of war. The son of Chinese immigrants to the United States, Young says in an essay with Paste magazine that he wanted Nanjing to be 'more than a footnote.' Young claims his point is to make this historical moment visible, and he does. [A]s readers, we become immersed in the impossible ethics of w [...]

    20. Mike on said:

      Two Chinese soldiers abandoned and cut off behind the Japanese lines in the occupied city of Nanjing desperately try to escape the city and survive the worst carnage of the Sino-Japanese War. While the Nanjing Massacre was something I had read about in historical accounts, this graphic novel very effectively tells a small story within the greater context of the incident. The fear and desperation of the people trapped in the city comes through clearly, as does their anger and hatred for their occ [...]

    21. Kath on said:

      This graphic novel does a great job of giving human faces to soldiers from both China and Japan during the seizure and massacre of Nanjing. The soldiers portrayed use strong language, but nothing in the book is gratuitous. The characters are carefully drawn, and Young's use of panels to deliver close ups of their faces is well-done. In fact, this technique delivers the emotional impact of the story. If anyone is interested in learning about this atrocity, this book would set a nice context.

    22. Melle on said:

      Wow. Sadly, I know very little of world history, especially of the Second Sino-Japanese War. Atrocities were committed by the occupying Japanese forces in the city of Nanjing. The graphic novel does an excellent job of humanizing both sides while excusing none of the violence and provides an excellent start into understanding a bit more about this significant part of world history. Like the graphic novel adaptation of War Brothers, brutal, unflinching, and necessary.

    23. Julia on said:

      This is an emotionally tough read. It pulls no punches about the horror of war and the violence committed against soldiers and civilians. In particular, the sexual violence toward women is very difficult to read. However, despite that, it's an important glimpse into a part of the conflicts that eventually became WW2 that is not often explored. Well worth reading.

    24. Kathleen on said:

      A beautifully drawn historical fiction comic following two Chinese soldiers as they try to escape the rape of Nanking. I would highly recommend this book for fans of history or comic books.

    25. Jenna on said:

      A beautifully illustrated portrait of a horrible event in history. The focus on our two protagonists made it faced paced and even more hard-hitting had it been an overarching tale of the entire city.

    26. Matti Karjalainen on said:

      Joulukuussa 1937 japanilaiset joukot valtasivat Nanjingin kaupungin ja aloittivat laajamittaiset puhdistukset, joissa ei säästelty sen enempää sotilaita kuin siviilejä. Kiinalaiset saivat kokea kaikki sodan hirveydet ja raakuudet äärimmäisessä muodossaan.Kiinalaistaustaisten sarjakuvataiteilijan Ethan Youngin sarjakuvaromaani "Nanjing: the Burning City" kertoo kahden kiinalaisen sotilaan tarinan helvetiksi muuttuneessa kaupungissa, josta olisi syytä päästä pois keinolla millä hyvä [...]

    27. Luke Bennett on said:

      The book "Nanjing: The Burning City" is Ethan Young's take on the tragedy known as "Nanjing Massacre". Japanese soldiers took siege on Nanjing while happening the soldiers committed mass murder and even rape. In the graphic novel Young has a fictionalized account of 2 Chinese soldiers trying to escape from the devastated city. Along their escape they also find refugees and have many exiting and nail biting events and interactions with Japanese soldiers. Even though there were such horrible thing [...]

    28. Ted on said:

      Excellent artwork that reminded me of Harvey Kurtzman and other 50's war comics. I think Young struck a good balance between showing the brutality of the Japanese occupation but kept most of the violence off screen. The story is told mostly through visuals and dialogue and while the dialogue was a little stiff sometimes it was well told. I do think it could have been longer though as we start in the thick of the action and the story progresses over one night so I didn't really feel attached to t [...]

    29. Mandy Perret on said:

      A beautiful book that shows the complexity of the Nanjing Atrocities. Great for my classes. I enjoyed it.

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