Shadow Star Narutaru

Alt title: Narutaru

Vol: 12; Ch: 68
1998 - 2003
3.721 out of 5 from 327 votes
Rank #16,833
Shadow Star Narutaru

Shiina is a sixth-grade tomboy whose brave and adventurous nature almost causes her to drown in the ocean. However, from the experience she meets a ‘Shadow Dragon' that she names Hoshimaru; strangely silent and star-shaped, it has the ability to shape shift and fly. Soon, Shiina makes yet another new friend: a troubled girl named Akira who happens to also acquire a Shadow Dragon. Yet Shiina and Akira aren't alone - others besides them have Shadow Dragons, and not all of them have such innocent intentions. Furthermore, the Japanese Military has taken an interest in the creatures' combative uses. What are the Shadow Dragons, where did they come from and what is their ulterior motive? Shiina is determined to find out...

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Target Audience: Older teens and above (due to nudity, sexuality and violence). Is geared more towards a male audience, despite the protagonist being a young girl.Story: I found the first few tankoubon intriguing but then my interest dwindled. There are short bursts of great plot development throughout the whole series, followed by long, boring scenes. At some points I was thinking of dropping the manga but persevered. But was it worth it in the end? Well, yes and no.If you've never heard if Narutaru then judging the series from the first volume is not recommended. It begins light-hearted and fun, with a preteen protagonist finding a mysterious creature, a "dragon child", and befriending it. But things soon get dark, and the whole story is one catastrophe and disturbing scene after another. If you love psychological manga, then I would recommend this without a doubt.I felt that many characters were unnecessary and a lot of the scenes could be cut out. There is a lot of aviation techno-babble as well as lengthy dialogue sequences that were completely unneeded.The author tries to continue the plot while concealing as much information as he can from the reader, which only causes more confusion than suspense. Many questions that arise from the very beginning of the series are left unanswered straight through to the end, which is quite frustrating. Although the author may have wanted to leave the ending open for interpretation, I thought it was excessive.Despite all this, there is still something to take from this series. The antagonists' ideas of creating a "utopian" society, by killing off the weak, I found to be fascinating. This manga truly gives you something to think about. And underneath all this heavy material is a coming-of-age story, with Shiina struggling with the idea of becoming an adult. I also found the idea of shadow dragons to be well done and a refreshing turn in the sci-fi genre.Art: Both male and female characters are drawn very thin and lanky. There are not any full busts and curves to the women in this manga. Sometimes the characters are drawn downright ugly. But as I continued to read I found an appreciation for the author's art style. His designs are more realistic than the characters seen in manga today. Planes and the creatures called shadow dragons are drawn beautifully. However I found the background to be lacking as well. There is too many squares of characters with white backdrop. However when the background was drawn it was done well.Characters: The characters all seem very real and well thought-out. However sometimes it is very hard to differentiate between characters, as many characters tend to look alike. Unfortunately, lots of characters are introduced in such a short amount of time, and I was struggling to remember what each of their names were, and exactly which character did what. Another problem that arose was that the author decided to change the hairstyle of some of the characters and even the hair colour of one, which intensified my confusion even more. Despite all this, I really felt for many of the characters, and had my share of disliking too. ---OverallThe Good: Intriguing plot; unique characters; quite the "thinker"; refreshing idea.The Bad: Plot pacing is rather slow; many unanswered questions; artwork may be off-putting; many characters look alike.---Recommended to those who like psychological and/or apocalyptic manga. Although it may seem like there are too many cons to this series, I am very glad that I read it. If you are on the fence about this manga, I'd say to try it out. For anyone looking for a something a little "different" in the sci-fi-horror genre, this is a must-read.


The only thing you can say to this manga is holy shit. Literally Synopsis: a drowning girl named Shiina is saved by a small thing called a dragon child. She names it Hoshimaru. After this comes an extremely violent downward spiral. Story: if fucked up had a definition in the dictionary it'd be this. Narutaru isn't bad story wise. It's occasionally boring and too wordy. But it gives you what you came for, Violence and extremely dark material. There's a little too much sexual violence for me and also too many middle schoolers getting fucked by adults. But the story has a decent ending and as previously stated gives you what u asked for. edgy shit you can tell your homies about. Art: The artists style was "unique". I try not to talk shit about how artists draw because it's their style. But it was so jarring to look at. Character design was super plain. The dragon thingies looked very cool and you could easily discern who's dragon child was who's if you could remember the characters names.  The violence really was just holy fuck. Too many naked middle schoolers and too much unnecessary nudity. But fuck, that violence was great. Characters: The two main females Sakura and Shiina have a good dynamic and were really nice. The main antagonists motives are pretty stupid where the do you find a bunch of crazy ass psycho tweens with a hankering for obliterating society, group them up and let them run wild, untouched, for most of the manga. its so absurd it felt comical at times. I can't remember many of the characters names because there was a lot of (unnecessary) dialogue. My favorite character would have to be Sakura for that scene where she attempted to blow her brains out. Shes got some fucking guts. overall it was great for the violence but was hard to look at art wise. the plot was interesting will watch the anime

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