Saturday, February 4, 2017

For Miyazaki Fans

MY NEIGHBOR TOTORO (1988). Photography. Britannica ImageQuest, Encyclopædia Britannica, 25 May 2016. Accessed 19 Jan 2017.
We are big fans of the animated films of Japanese director, producer, and screenwriter Hayao Miyazaki and Studio Ghibli, the film and animation studio he co-founded in 1985. The films of Miyazaki first gained renown in the west with Princess Mononoke  in 1997, after he had already created 6 full-length animated movies to great acclaim in Japan. Fans of manga and anime will enjoy his films, which are catalogued as children's DVDs in the library catalog, but can be enjoyed by all ages.

Once we watched the films, we got to wondering - if you love the worlds and vision created by Miyazaki, where might you go from there? There are some picture books based on the films and screenplays of the films available in the library catalog, and a couple of his movies have been based on books, but we thought it might be interesting to provide a list of readalikes not so much based on the book, or in manga format, but with similar subjects that might entertain Miyazaki fans. We've used NoveList, which you can access from the Quick Links in our Books and Literature guide, to find suggested titles. We've tried to provide a couple suggestions for each Miyazaki scripted-and-directed film in the catalog, with readalikes mostly for more than one age range (assuming most adults won't mind young adult titles). Let us know how we did in the comments!

Princess Mononoke
readalikes: Wildwood by Colin Meloy [J]; The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland In a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne Valente [YA]

Spirited Away
readalikes: The Last of the Really Great Whangdoodles by Julie Edwards [J]; The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman [YA]

Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind
readalikes: A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle [J], Meridian by Barbara Kesel [YA]

Porco Rosso
readalikes: Riddle in Ruby by Kent Davis [J]; Dark Run by Mike Brooks [adult] 

Lupin the III: The Castle of Cagliostro 
readalikes: Newt's Emerald by Garth Nix [YA]; The Accidental Highwayman: Being the Tale of Kit Bristol, His Horse Midnight, A Mysterious Princess, and Sundry Magical Persons Besides by Ben Tripp [YA]

Howl's Moving Castle
readalikes: Howl's Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones [J]; A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula Le Guin

readalikes: Lies Beneath by Anne Greenwood Brown [YA]; The Mermaid's Sister by Carrie Ann Noble [YA]

Kiki's Delivery Service
readalikes: Egg & Spoon by Gregory Maguire [YA]; Worst Witch by Jill Murphy [J]

Castle in the Sky
readalikes: The Apothecary by Maile Meloy [J]; Airman by Eoin Colfer [YA]

My Neighbor Totoro
readalikes: Pip Bartlett's Guide to Magical Creatures by Jackson Pearce and Maggie Stiefvater [J]; Wildwood Dancing by Juliet Marillier [YA]

The Secret World of Arrietty
readalikes: The Borrowers by Mary Norton [J]; The Carpet People by Terry Pratchett [J]

The Wind Rises
readalikes: Dragonwings by Laurence Yep [J]; The Invention of Everything Else by Samantha Hunt [adult]

If you are a Miyazaki fan, also consider checking out the films of Isao Takahata, another Studio Ghibli co-founder. To learn more about the workings of Studio Ghibli's animation studio, also check out the documentary The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness. We hear Miyazaki might be coming out of retirement to make one more film! Fingers crossed.

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