BARCELONA – A gripping two-volume manga thriller by a pair of Spanish authors sees the citizens of London mystified by a series of crimes that appear to be connected by one common theme: water, the writer told EFE on Tuesday.
Scriptwriter Fidel de Tovar and illustrator Dani Bermudez have taken a radical leap with their new venture titled “Liquid Memories. The murderer of water,” a vibrant and cinematographic manga comic that has marked a departure from their previous project award-winning “Arashiyama.”
In “Arashiyama,” the Japanese tradition of animism was central to the narrative that saw orphaned siblings get lost in the Mountain of Desires where the forests and spirits that inhabited the natural landscape gave the story its atmospheric setting.
Their latest venture takes an urban and gritty backdrop as a high-tech London in a constant state of flux provides the setting to the unfolding mystery of a killer whose crimes have terrorized the UK’s capital.
“We wanted to travel from Japan to London because it is a city we love and also because deep down it is easier to narrate and illustrate western customs,” de Tovar told EFE.
The metropolis is depicted as “a being that is growing and mutating, changes that are a reflection of a society that is under construction,” the scriptwriter added.
Throughout, the authors connect the narrative to London’s most well known serial killer, Jack the Ripper, and in this vein Bermudez has modified his technique to make it darker and closer to a thriller, all the while moving further away from the fantasy and more childish landscape of “Arashiyama.”
De Trovar said that when he started writing the story, which initially was going to be titled “The murderer of water,” he had a clear idea in his head of how it would end in order to avoid the sense of improvisation many works of fiction generate when they finish in an abrupt or even disappointing way.
The comic, which for its first volume has a tone of self-parody and a touch of humor, will close on a darker note with the publication of its second tome that will put the story to bed, something the first part of “Liquid Memories” already points to towards the end of the graphic novel.
“The important thing is for the characters to behave like people, not characters so that the reader can connect with them and has the urge to continue reading,” de Trovar continued.
The characters, who are seemingly unconnected, are compelled to interact with each other due to the crimes that seem to have an odd link to water.
The authors have added another element to the manga experience, which they describe as a “complete” one by offering a music playlist for readers to listen to in order to get more immersed in the narrative and delve deeper into the psyche of the protagonists.
Once both volumes have been published the Spanish manga duo have suggested their next project could be a love story set in the city of Barcelona.
The first tome of “Liquid Memories,” is set to launch in Spanish bookstores on April 5.