In the captivating manga “Cruise,” we embark on a voyage with Yamada Kohei,
a dedicated doctor who makes a life-altering decision to exchange his landlubber
medical career for a role as a ship’s physician on Japan’s grandest luxury liner, the Phoenix. This pivotal choice takes him away from the conventional path of academia,
where a colleague had urged him to embrace teaching. Instead, Kohei is drawn to the allure of the sea and the unique lessons
it offers through the passengers aboard the ship.
Within the pages of this manga, the narrative unfolds as a beautifully melancholic human drama. It presents a series of poignant and heartfelt stories,
each one reflecting the diverse and complex lives of the ship’s travelers. The tales within “Cruise” are a testament to the profound impact of human connection,
whether brief or enduring, and the way in which the ship becomes a microcosm of life’s joys and sorrows.
One of the poignant stories featured in the first volume of “Cruise” revolves around a passenger grappling
with the weight of terminal cancer. In the face of impending mortality, it is music that holds the power to uplift his heavy heart,
laden with regrets. These narrative threads are woven with exquisite sensitivity by author Yajima Masao-sensei, creating a tapestry of emotions that resonate with readers.
Yajima Masao-sensei, known for the compelling seinen manga “SORA,” which delves into the life of a crybaby flight attendant, now turns his storytelling lens toward the realm of cruise ships. These distinct narratives highlight the intimate and profound moments that transpire when individuals from diverse backgrounds and experiences come together on a shared journey.
As we transition from the skies of airplane passengers’ stories to the sea-bound tales of cruise ships, “Cruise” invites readers to delve into the intricacies of human connection, self-discovery, and the transcendent power of shared experiences.