Genres: Drama, Historical, Romance & Shoujo.
Themes: Love, Ninjas, Hope, Destruction, Pain, Japan, Slice of Life, Marriage & Perseverance.
Available Forms: Manga
The story takes place in the Tenshō Era of Japan. Usagi is a bumbling ninja-in-training in her village in southern Iga. Though she is already fifteen, she is a terrible ninja and has made no progress whatsoever. As a result, her grandfather gives her a special mission: to go to Segachi, marry Hanzō Hattori, the leader of the main branch ninja family, and bear his child. She is accompanied by Mamezo, her longtime friend, companion, and foster child. Once they arrive it becomes apparent that Hanzō has no intention of marrying anyone, and worse yet, it seems Usagi has a much more refined rival. It is clear that as Usagi spends more time with Hanzō, she is growing on him, though the fact that he is constantly bombarded with new potential brides makes Usagi self-conscious.
I really enjoyed this manga, it hits all of my key areas – Decent length (105 chapters long), Closure on their story (very well done – it’s not open ended) & a slow but consistent love story (they don’t fall in love within 2 chapters)…It also has ninjas which gets it a heap of extra brownie points as a ninja shoujo manga is a rarity.
Tail of the Moon is addictive as the story is filled with such rich characters. Usagi and Hanzō’s love story is one that truly warms your heart; with their paths originally being crossed as part of an arranged marriage but slowly deepening over time as Usagi truly falls for him and wishes to impress him as a bride candate. As the manga is lengthy we get follow Usagi from being a child into a woman and the entire time her heart is solely fixed on her goal of a happy life with Hanzō – I think this is beautiful as most manga’s seem to only focus on 1 or 2 years of their characters life not almost a decade which is what makes this love story really stand out for me. I was so engrossed in their story that I found myself literally in pain at certain points. I would recommend this title to anyone who wants to read an love tale of hope a perseverance as their story is one that I think everyone can learn something from – Seize the day!