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Book Review: Anchihiiroo – Origin of an Antihero (Toonopolis Shorts, #1) – Jeremy Rodden

Donna Brown3 comments792 views
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About Anchihiiroo - Origin of an Antihero (Toonopolis Shorts, #1) (2011)

Toonopolis: AnchihiirooIn Toonopolis: Gemini, Anchihiiroo (aka Han’Eiyuu) is the former hero of Animetown who turns Rogue after meeting the devious Shadowy Figure, forcing his creator to change him into a villain instead of the anti-hero he once was. Yuki, the albino inventor of Wan-Wan, described Anchihiiroo’s background:

“He had a terrible childhood. He was orphaned at an early age when his parents were killed in a war. Then his orphanage burned down, and then a flood wiped out the town his orphanage was in. He was the only survivor.”

Learn the full origin of Anchihiiroo, from his tragic childhood as Yoshi of Higeki to the warrior training that allowed him to put a stop to the Ninja-Pirate War that plagued Animetown. Witness his relationship with the phoenix Suzaku and his inevitable Rogue turn after meeting the mysterious Shadowy Figure. It is a story about destiny and a young man’s desire to make his own path in the world.

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Review: Anchihiiroo – Origin of an Antihero (Toonopolis Shorts, #1)

In Toonopolis: Gemini we were introduced to many characters fleetingly and in such circumstances the hope is often – with a good character at least – that you will get to know a little more.  Here is an ideal opportunity with Anchihiiroo – Origin of an Antihero (Toonopolis Shorts, #1).

In this novella we encounter Yoshi, a child whose family is tragically struck down in the war between the pirates and the ninjas.  He is saved and begins training to become a great hero, with the guidance of the sarcastic but caring phoenix, Suzaku.

The tale charts Yoshi’s training and rise to heroic stance and then looks beyond to the choices that lead him to become the ultimate anti-hero.

Despite being a tie-in to Toonopolis: Gemini, you could easily read and enjoy this either before or after that book, with neither tale being spoilt for it.  And, as with Toonopolis: Gemini, Rodden has weaved a wonderful tale with interesting references, flawed but hilarious characters and dramatic events.

I’m not sure many writers could get away with calling a beautiful, mythical phoenix Suzaku or manage to involve both ninjas and pirates in what is actually quite a tragic story but Rodden manages to make it seem effortless.  This, in many ways, lacks the regular hilarity of Toonpolis: Gemini but certainly has its high moments.  However, don’t be mistaken by the comic cover and the fun that is promised within: this is also a sad tale.

Verdict: 5/5

(Source: reviewer received a copy in exchange for a fair and honest review)

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Donna Brown
Avid reader/audiobook listener, fan of podcasts, prone to the odd Netflix binge. Mum to six crazy and incredible rescue cats. Occasional writer of short stories and poetry.


  1. As always, Donna, I appreciate your honest review and kind words! 🙂

    Unfortunately, even in a cartoon universe… there are still some sad stories. Of course, Yoshi's story is not over. We will see him again… (in Book 3 of Toonopolis Files, where we get Zephyr as the MC). DUN DUN DUN FORESHADOWING! 😉


  2. I love the reference to the anime and cartoons in general. This seems that story that my kids will love to read.

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