Imperfect Girl, by Niso Isin and Mitsuri Hattori, is a psychological horror/mystery story. It follows an aspiring author who comes across a girl who seems devoid of a conscience.
He watches her, as her friend is killed by a car, and sees her save her video game before going to check on her friend. She assumed no one saw, but soon realizes the young author saw everything. Later that night, the young man is greeted by a surprise visitor. While he is working at his desk he feels a sharp pain in his leg, and looks down to see this young girl holding a knife in his leg. The only thing she says is “ my name is U.” She forces him to walk at knifepoint all the way back to her house. She locks him in a closet for fear that he will reveal her true nature. He spends the first night of imprisonment pondering whether or not to call the police. He ultimately decides against it; partly because he is worried about the girl and partly because he is embarrassed that a fourth grader was able to kidnap him. The morning of the second day U opens the closet door and only says “Good morning” before locking him back up and leaving.
The story continues on with the main character learning more about the mysterious U. He finds a way to sneak out of the closet and look around the house. He has many chances to escape but he chooses to stay out of fascination for the girl.
Imperfect Girl was published in English in 2017 and its third and final volume was published in April of 2018. The author Nisio Isin, is a Japanese author well known for the light novels Kazemonogatari, Nekomonogatari, and Bakemonogatari. The artist, Mitsuri Hattori, is best known for his series Kenko Zanrakei, Suieibu Umisho, and a series that was published in English, Sankerea: undying love.
Imperfect Girl is a incredible mystery with great characters, and is only three volumes so it will be quite easy to get your hands on the entire series.
Olivia Gelerman, 11, is the curator of several hundred works of manga, anime and graphic novels that can be found in a book collection for sale of 47 West. Her knowledge of these genres is extensive and she is happy to recommend certain books for tween and teen readers. Her monthly review on a book in these genres appears exclusively in Penobscot Bay Pilot.
Photos by Olivia Gelerman