Buddha, Volume 1: Kapilavastu

This emotional manga (400 pages) was published in November of 2017 by Vertical. The book takes you to japan. David read Buddha, Volume 1: Kapilavastu and loved it; it wouldn't be on our site if he didn't recommend it.


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Buddha, Volume 1: Kapilavastu

Osamu Tezuka

Osamu Tezuka is an undisputed master of manga. In this comic that defies categorization, he brings his own original characters to the true history of Siddhartha, blending a cartoony art style with a dramatic story. It’s exciting and all-together original.

This 8-book series is ostensibly about the history of Buddhism — but along with the biographical elements, we also get adventure, human suffering, and a little romance. It’s a bit dark, especially when you consider that Tezuka is best-known for creating Astroboy.

Each character in this story is complex, distinct, and quite likable. We meet a wild child who can communicate with animals, a slave who poses as the son of a general to escape, a devoted and loyal mother, and a monk on a mission. These compelling characters embark on unexpected adventures. Along the way, we’re treated to an examination of Tezuka’s perspective on fate and violence. But it’s not all deep and meaningful; there are also moments of broad humor and those charming drawings.

Combining modern language, cliff-hangers, dramatic events, amusing art, and an in-depth look at historical events — deadly locust swarm, anyone? — this manga is like nothing else you’ve ever read. And that makes it just right.


black and white comics page

keep reading

In Japan, comics are known as manga. They're used to tell stories in every genre, and are read by people of all ages. We're delighted to have cartoonist Tille Walden share her top picks for readers who are new to the form.
In episode 3 of our new podcast, we go deep into Japanese culture with moving novels, an autobio graphic novel, and a look at all things geeky. Then we chat with graphic novelist Tillie Walden about her love of manga.

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