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"Basara - The spirit of freedom which denies old authority, transcending traditions and customs."

Born under a prophecy that will liberate and unite Japan, Sarasa has had to take her brother Tatara's place as the "Boy of Destiny." Fighting for the oppressed, Sarasa journeys across Japan to gain allies and defeat her enemies--all while keeping her identity a secret!

Basara won the Shogakukan Manga Award for shoujo in 1992.


Related Series

Associated Names
ศัตรูที่รัก (Thai)
Legend of Basara

Groups Scanlating

Latest Release(s)
v.21 c.78 by MangaONE over 9 years ago
v.20 c.Extra by MangaONE over 11 years ago
v.20 c.76-77 by MangaONE over 11 years ago
Search for all releases of this series

Status in Country of Origin
27 Volumes (Tankoubon - Complete)
16 Volumes (Bunkoban - Complete)

Completely Scanlated?

Anime Start/End Chapter
Starts at Vol 1, Chap 1
Ends at Vol 5

User Reviews
Basara by PrincessVera

9 topics, 62 posts
Click here to view the forum

User Rating
Average: 8.9 / 10.0 (1270 votes)
Bayesian Average: 8.84 / 10.0
 49% (627 votes)
 21% (268 votes)
 15% (186 votes)
 7% (85 votes)
 3% (37 votes)
 2% (25 votes)
 1% (11 votes)
 1% (8 votes)
 0% (4 votes)
 1% (19 votes)

Last Updated
September 27th 2017, 9:13am PST



Category Recommendations





Original Publisher

Serialized In (magazine)
Betsucomi (Shogakukan)

Licensed (in English)

English Publisher
Viz (27 Volumes - Complete)

Activity Stats (vs. other series)
Weekly Pos #157 decreased(-12)
Monthly Pos #103 decreased(-13)
3 Month Pos #90 decreased(-12)
6 Month Pos #75 increased(+13)
Year Pos #81 decreased(-2)

List Stats
On 1134 reading lists
On 1655 wish lists
On 2408 completed lists
On 176 unfinished lists
On 681 custom lists

Note: You must be logged in to update information on this page.

Forum Posts
Basara's ending over 3 years ago
what is the meaning of BASARA btw?? over 6 years ago
is it worth reading? over 6 years ago
ending and spoilers over 7 years ago
Sasara's Mother over 8 years ago

Click to view the forum

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User Comments [ Order by time added ]

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One of the best adventure/romance mangas, hands down.   
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by smashinginred
July 31st, 2008, 10:47pm
I started reading this series not really knowing what to expect. After the first volume, I began downloading all the scanlations available and devoured 20 volumes of Basara as quickly as I could. Then I went back to the beginning and read it again. The story FAR exceeded my expectations and has quickly bumped all other romance mangas down several pegs in comparison.

Though you might not like the art at first, I swear it grows on you. By now, I can't imagine Basara drawn any other way; the artist's etherial style is perfect for portraying the intense emotions, the sexy boys and the landscape. Somehow, she is able to make the desert exude both romance and desolation.

You might think that 27 volumes means that the storyline becomes drawn out, repetitive and tedious, but that's far from true. The mangaka has paced the story very well and there are no unnecessary filler chapters in Basara. In fact, I wish the story was twice as long! The battle scenes are just long enough (they don't drag on and on), you get just enough romance (though I wouldn't mind even more Shuri/Sarasa interactions!) and you quickly get a good feel for the very dimensional supporting characters, numerous though they may be.

The romance between the Red King Shuri and the Child of Destiny Sarasa is so poignant and emotional, you can't help but get invested in it, even though you just know it'll result in tragedy when they find out each others' true identities. (And their reactions to this climactic discovery is absolutely heart-rending.) Though their relationship is only made up of several casual encounters and a few letters, this is no shallow love they experience.

Sarasa is the most amazing female heroine I've ever read. Truly brave, ingenious and caring, she also suffers from human weaknesses, like self-doubt and taking too much upon herself. Shuri...well, you wonder how these two can ever love each other after the big reveal, since he starts out as such a violent and, no other word for it, evil man. He undergoes the most character development in the story. However, I think Ageha, the male cross-dressing ex-slave turned dancer is my absolute favorite character, haha.

I've never fallen so much in love with a series. Everyone should give it a try, especially if you're a fan of "forbidden" or tragic love, comedy and epic historical adventures. Though the summary might lead you to believe you're setting yourself up for a world of heartache, don't worry, Basara is still a romance story, so expect a happy ending.
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A rich and inspiring odyssey   
Rating: N/A
by Mizura
February 20th, 2014, 7:06am
Several times, I couldn't get far when I tried to read this series. The first few volumes absolutely drowns you in death, tragedy, doomed love and the occasional bad decision. The prospect of reading 27 volumes in the same vein felt off-putting, to put it mildly. As a huge fan of 7 Seeds from the same author though, I finally mustered the courage to read through it, and fortunately, it turned out that it wasn't 27 volumes of the tragic lovers adding to one another's list of grievances.

To those of you who initially felt the same as me: don't be put off. There is still plenty of drama, of course, and at times you'd really feel like slapping a character or two. Sarasa and Shuri vow to destroy each other, but must also confront many other challenges along the way. Losses are inevitable. Yet these extremely tall walls become the very stepping stones towards an incredible odyssey of personal development and uprising all across the country, taking the protagonists across numerous regions in Japan, and allowing the readers to enjoy a rich story that explores themes like politics and corruption of course, but also governance methods, trade, irrigation, journalism, art, slavery, plenty of family drama, and different sorts of introspection.

As Sarasa gathers allies and learns more about the world, she is also forced to rethink and look beyond her revenge to what she truly wishes to accomplish for the country. Shuri, meanwhile, is forced to look beyond his ambitions to topple his father and siblings, and truly confront the losses caused by his actions, both to himself and to others. Their romance, which may have felt overbearing at first, actually develops greatly, into something quite touching. Their growth is possible Because they must confront pain and loss, both those they felt themselves and those they have caused others.

And they don't do this alone. The series is supported by an amazing cast, each with unique personalities and backgrounds. There are the brave, the strong, the intelligent and the wise, but also the weak. There are those who fight at the frontlines, those who work in the shadows, those who expose the truth, those who reform or conspire from within, those who lead by example, even farmers, builders and healers striving towards a better tomorrow. These aren't characters that were just sitting around, twiddling their fingers and waiting for a savior. The whole country was ready for change well before Sarasa showed up. Nor do they coddle the supposed 'saviors.' Far from it: they can tell weakness, and they can tell hot air. And they are the ones who force the main characters to think about what it is they truly aim to achieve, as well as what sacrifices they are willing to make.

In the end, the survivors will have to live with scars and burdens, as well as difficulties that are only starting. And yet, they never stop struggling towards a better tomorrow. And somehow, I found that to be the most satisfying conclusion.

I'd like to point out that this is a mostly realistic fantasy, but fantasy nonetheless. There is no magic nor mystical creatures, but there is a strong notion of fate throughout the series, complete with too-well-timed natural events and encounters. Accepting this instead of nitpicking over the coincidences will allow you to enjoy the story more fully. Some people don't like the art, and I didn't enjoy the same artstyle with 7 Seeds at first, but with time I realized how rich and expressive it is.

Speaking of 7 Seeds, I've seen a few people compare 7 Seeds and Basara, but what really surprised me was how Different the two series are. Basara focuses more on romance and personal character development (for several key characters) in a setting of wars, politics, governance and related themes (trade, slavery, etc.). 7 Seeds focuses more on group dynamics (individual character development is more spread out compared to Basara) and psychology (some of the best I've seen anywhere) in a setting of survival (different strategies humanity considered against the impeding doom, differing strategies of survival used by the different teams). The things you love in one may not be present in the other, but both are magnificent works in their own rights.
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one of the best mangas i've ever read   
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by jun_
November 12th, 2008, 6:16am
the 1st time i read this when in yr2006. i read it just because i had nth better to do at that time.. the truth is, i just read it to pass some time. but as i read on, things became different. i started to really love this manga! this is surely one of those mangas you wont feel tired or bored to reaad over and over again! when i first saw this, i kind of disliked the art, it wasn't really the type that i used to read. but as i read on, i realized that the mangaka was really awesome! the way the art is. the plot of the story.. i can't imagine anything as perfect as this! really, this is oe of the best! i'm really glad i decided to read it! i would have regretted not reading it..
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Rating: N/A
by tazman0208
February 28th, 2010, 5:19am
I agree with everybody, this story is epic no doubt about it. I specifically liked the fact that the last two volumes are short stories about the lives of all the characters after the revolution, including Sarasa and Shuri.. I was hesitant for a long time about reading this manga because it was started in 1991 and to me art is important for a manga. But after I picked it up and started reading it kept getting better and better until it finally ended in one of the greatest endings a manga could have. If you haven't picked this up yet, you really should start reading it.
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Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by hamburgla
January 6th, 2010, 5:21am
this story can only be described as EPIC. It is long and super satisfying, and leaves you (possibly) wanting for more. There is action, advventure, a killer story line and LOVE. Shuri and Sarasa is one of my favourite couples of all time. Their romance is soooo addictive: painful, intense and the sloppy, cliche shojo love cannot compare to this one.

And Shuri is too good looking for mine eyes.

The only thing i regret is reading it when i first started out with manga. It has set my expectations too high for all the other mangas and i have not yet found one better than this. sad fingers crossed to finding one ><

... Last updated on January 6th, 2010, 5:23am
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Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by hyunwon88
December 15th, 2012, 2:30am
The story is epic (It's Berserk meets Romeo & Juliet, now tell me if its not epic?) The romance is bittersweet (She fell in love with Shuri without knowing
Spoiler (mouse over to view)
that he is the red king who is responsible for the massacre of her village & the death of her father & brother
) & character developments was superb.(A good example would be Shuri). I really recommend this to all who apreciate a good masterpiece!

Ps: I'm so sad that the anime of this manga have just 13 episodes. It definitely deserves a lot of attention unlike other crappy shojos or shounens out there.

... Last updated on December 15th, 2012, 3:06am
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Epic shoujo gem   
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by yuzuru19
April 19th, 2010, 5:48pm
Basara is without doubt one of the best shoujo of all time. It's a truly epic shoujo and an epic romance.
The artwork may be outdated and even ugly for many people(nevertheless I find the style beautiful) but who cares about the art when you have THIS story? Human, *real* characters, bathed in gray; you won't find evil overlords or "good guys" in this manga. The plot is intriguing and full of twists and even if I was able to predict many stuff, everything is so amazingly executed that this "predictability" doesn't detract any points from the awesomeness. The messages are naturally conveyed, unforced; this is not a stupid moralistic story.
Don't let the artwork turn you off people and read this manga. It's worth every minute of your time.
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Review of Basara   
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by luciferius
November 23rd, 2009, 9:27am
This is perhaps the best shoujou, maybe even manga I've ever read. I haven't found a better shoujo that can compete with Basara. It had everything, from adventure, action, romance, betrayal and everything. Even though the art grew on me, despite being annoyed by it at first. It's a wonderful story and told in such a way that captures a reader and doesn't let go.
I love Basara so much, it's wonderful and not your typical shoujo. The characters are beautifully made, it made me cry, something I didn't expect and just the world of Basara itself enchanted me. I would give 15/10 but I can't, so i'll just stick to 10/10.
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curious >.<   
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by mileen
June 8th, 2009, 5:57am
Spoiler (highlight to view)
As the title said, I'm curious am I going to pick this up for my newest manga reading or not? I dare myself, I pick it up. God, man.. can you believed it? The art, I've never seen this kind of art ever! Seriously, all typical shoujo I read have typical art, but no for this manga. It's soo beyond the edge and from the first caught my interest <3. I loved the way mangaka make us believed the "child of destiny" is Sarasa's twin brother, Tatara. Then, poof. Tatara's gone, and I couldn't believed it if Tatara's is "Son of destiny" because he way too soft and loveable meanwhile Sarasa more rebellious and adventures.

The plot and storyline keep my heart beat like crazy! Seriously, the Sarasa's team (or.. "Tatara's Team) keep bumping one to another adventure that keep them trap and showing the spirit of "Tatara".

I simply love all the character! Seriously, to the good guy and bad guy. They have something that make us to Hate them or love them. As for "bad + good guy" Asagi, I don't know, should I hate him or like him? This show that, the mangaka knew what she's going to present.

Hey, this manga make me draw tears oke! Seriously! Ageha or "No 31" sacrifice is too much for me to handle. To his past as "No 31" and future as Ageha, I couldn't help it how much he suffered. And, I couldn't help giggle when he found out he in "hell". Haha, seriously, they still can chit chat and jealous of Taro.

Red King aka Shuri relationship with Sarasa is to die for! I love it when he became a "monk" with bald head and together with Sarasa in horrendous slave game, he couldn't help to remark every word Sarasa meant to "Blue King " that also stab his heart.

I'm satisfied enough with the ending even though too many character died for! But, that's what make it more exciting right?

Highly recommended. Don't bother by "dislike" comment. Everyone has their own opinion. For me, it suitable to those who love adventure/action and + romance shoujo element. <3 great!
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very great one!!!   
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by wansmor
November 21st, 2014, 3:42pm
I was not interested in this manga and it was long after I had heard about it that I finally decided to pick it up on a library not a few months ago. One read on the 1st volume and I couldn't drop the comic book anymore. There're so much that each volume tell, and they kept enchanting me to go on reading.

The strength that Basara posses is its storyline. while the art was ok (you can still figure what is going on in the pictures), I will say that Basara's art is poor on term of depicting details especially on crowd scenes. Still it doesn't reduce my fun on reading it. I love the characters, I love the twists, I like the war, I like the romance, and the ending was good too.

Basara is a kind of story that will not fail you till the end. If you like a well written story, mind not the art and keep reading. You'll come to love Sarasa (the lead role) and you are going to cheer her on her journey, through all the suffering and struggles, through her wars and love stories, to finally achieved her goal. You got to love her adversaries too, there were all kind of them: betrayer, pirates, emperor, allies, stranger, vagabond, lover, queen, and they were giving different aura from each other that you will never get bored with them. There were also times when they turned to her side by her unique charisma.

Basara is not neccesarily best drawn manga, the action scenes were quite pathetic, but still well explained. The art style is shoujo, but the story line is even more solid than the best written shonen .

... Last updated on August 2nd, 2015, 7:46pm
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