manga04_jpg login_tab_left_jpg
Username:   Password:    Forgot Password?
Try out our new iPhone application!
Manga Poll
If you had to lose a finger, which one would you pick?
Doesn't matter
See Old Polls

Manga is the Japanese equivalent of comics
with a unique style and following. Join the revolution! Read some manga today!

Coded in ConTEXT

Join #baka-updates

RSS Feed
center_left_tab Manga Info center_right_tab
ALL    A    B    C    D    E    F    G    H    I    J    K    L    M    N    O    P    Q    R    S    T    U    V    W    X    Y    Z   
Login to add items to your list, keep track of your progress, and rate series!
They exist in the most unexpected places—be it within your eyes and ears, under the floor and roof of your house, or in the trees and flowers in your garden. They are everywhere, and yet nowhere, at the same time. Are they alive or not? Perhaps it is more apt to say they are beings who transcend the concept of life and death itself...

They are mushi.

Some wreak havoc in the lives of humans; others bring them deliverance from suffering. Mushi are neither good, nor evil: for just like any other creature, they are merely striving to survive in this harsh, competitive world.

Ginko, a lone wanderer with a reclusive personality, offers help and guidance to those plagued by mushi. This is the tale of his travels and exploits in a wondrous world populated by these mysterious entities.

- Excellence Prize for Manga at the 7th Japan Media Arts Festival (2003)
- Kodansha Manga Award - General Manga (2006)
- 9th place on Japan's Agency for Cultural Affairs List of Best Manga.
- The anime adaptation further won grand prizes in the categories of Television Series and Best Art Direction (for Takashi Waki) at the 5th Tokyo Anime Awards held at the Tokyo International Anime Fair in 2006.


Related Series

Associated Names
Bug Master
Trùng Sư

Groups Scanlating
J.A.C. Group

Latest Release(s)
c.35 by J.A.C. Group over 8 years ago
c.34 by J.A.C. Group over 9 years ago
c.33 by J.A.C. Group over 9 years ago
Search for all releases of this series

Status in Country of Origin
10 Volumes (Tankobon - Complete)
10 Volumes (Aizoban - Complete)

Completely Scanlated?

Anime Start/End Chapter
Starts at Vol 1, Chap 1
Ends at Vol 10, Chap 5

User Reviews

5 topics, 15 posts
Click here to view the forum

User Rating
Average: 9 / 10.0 (804 votes)
Bayesian Average: 8.9 / 10.0
 50% (401 votes)
 23% (186 votes)
 13% (108 votes)
 7% (54 votes)
 2% (17 votes)
 1% (12 votes)
 1% (10 votes)
 1% (5 votes)
 0% (1 votes)
 1% (10 votes)

Last Updated
March 6th 2018, 8:27pm PST



Category Recommendations





Original Publisher

Serialized In (magazine)
Afternoon (Kodansha)

Licensed (in English)

English Publisher
Kodansha Comics (8 Volumes - Complete; Digital)

Activity Stats (vs. other series)
Weekly Pos #389 increased(+125)
Monthly Pos #735 increased(+8)
3 Month Pos #976 decreased(-7)
6 Month Pos #1033 increased(+84)
Year Pos #1117 increased(+39)

List Stats
On 1294 reading lists
On 1718 wish lists
On 1060 completed lists
On 84 unfinished lists
On 525 custom lists

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

Forum Posts
Whoever came up with the "Bug Master" title translation needs to be smacked upside the head over 2 years ago
Mushishi Anime Gets 2nd Season in April over 4 years ago
anime or manga? over 5 years ago
Ending Discussion.... over 6 years ago
Manga to Anime Rundown over 12 years ago

Click to view the forum

tickmark preloadxmark preloadxmark preload
User Comments [ Order by usefulness ]

You must login to comment for this series! Register an account.

One of my favorite series   
Rating: N/A
by fwoom
October 1st, 2015, 4:11pm
I can just go back and read this series over and over again... completely agree with the other reviewer that said he was sad to see it end. sad I wish the author would just keep on going too.

Full review and further recommendations here:
Was this comment useful?  Yes tickmark  No xmark    
Boring you say?   
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by residentgrigo
November 16th, 2014, 8:51am
I find Mushishi NOT to be boring but i view it as the MOST boring anime (but not sure if manga) ever and the sheer commitment to no service of any kind to the reader/viewer has to be admired as there is only deep storytelling, the beauty of nature and nothing more. The mangaka clearly had a vision to tell and didn't care about the reader one bit so ether you get on the slowest train if all or you go home. I recently "forced" a friend of mine to watch the whole anime series and he described it as gently walking through a forest. I couldn't describe it better and this is the best Mono no aware of all. The new Mushishi Tokubetsu Hen - Hihamu Kage from 2014 is identical to the two sisters episode 11/12 (or special if you like) from season 2 btw. I am interested in more such shorts and Yokohama Shopping Trip (8,5/10) is another must in the sub-genre.

... Last updated on May 4th, 2015, 10:49am
Was this comment useful?  Yes tickmark  No xmark    
Another manga done correctly   
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by zimzimbadabim
August 3rd, 2012, 11:56am
It gives me a good feeling when I see mangas like these. It's the reason I have completed over 100 mangas and am currently reading over 200 other mangas: for the chance that I might find a gem such as this one. In all my experience I've only read about 15 other mangas of this quality.
Was this comment useful?  Yes tickmark  No xmark    
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by doushimomo
July 14th, 2012, 5:34pm
The world feels so completely realized, so utterly rich, that I find myself reading this over and over again. Something about Mushishi is so wonderful and calming, it's just a joy to read. The artwork is beautiful, and I also enjoy reading the mangaka's notes about where she's traveled, and how she gets her ideas.
Was this comment useful?  Yes tickmark  No xmark    
What makes a legend   
Rating: N/A
by Ibleda
February 2nd, 2012, 9:52pm
Amazing manga. However... unexpected for it to end. I thought of it as a manga with potential to go on just about forever, as they were short stories instead of a single plotline. Honestly... the ending was not satisfying at all. There were no storyline that points to end of series at all, it just went *boom* and over.
However, that does not change that Mushishi is an absolutely awesome manga. Although the ending was not satisfying, it was not unacceptable either. Quality over quantity, nothing better can be said. The last thing wanted would be for a quality drop if the manga was dragged on, though if a sequel is ever released, I would definitely look forward to reading it.
Was this comment useful?  Yes tickmark  No xmark    
Greatly satisfying.   
Rating: N/A
by SomePerson
September 28th, 2011, 4:42pm
Don't look for huge story arcs or a single connected plotline. This manga is a collection of short (but very good) stories. Ginko is a great character, and the world that Urushibara has made is wonderful. This manga isn't just about him, but rather the world around him (in a sense, how we flow with nature). I enjoyed the stories about him very much, but there are just so many others that are just as good.

One of the few episodic manga that I really enjoyed. Definitely recommend it for a read...
Was this comment useful?  Yes tickmark  No xmark    
Amazing work.   
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by LUEser
May 27th, 2011, 2:34pm
First of all, I want to point out that I love the artwork. The people, in general, is not over-dramatically drawn; they're everyday people with everyday lives. The mushi are very unique and what is even more amazing is their ability to cause different effects on people, mentally and physically. It is an absolute joy to read this series.
Was this comment useful?  Yes tickmark  No xmark    
Sad to see the end   
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by naomi
August 27th, 2010, 9:52am
I've thoroughly enjoyed every bit of this series, rereading each of the volumes too many times to count. The way each (or majority of) chapter holds a different story, the episodic nature has become a real highlight for me. It almost feels like how an adult would tell a fairy tale to a child. Don't quite know how to explain it, but just being able to pick up a random volume and read any chapter when you have some free time is very enjoyable.

Storywise, I won't go into details, I think it's obvious how good they are. They have varied endings, mostly happy, some very bittersweet. My favourite has to be the one where the man has deja vu (somewhere in v8-10), realising his life is going around a loop. The ending just made me go oh no. Bittersweet indeed. I've read a few complaints about the ending to the whole series, how there's no dramatic story or a real closure, but I think the ending suits the episodic nature told. Sort of like you can still see Ginko wandering around in his world helping others. The art you can see grows over the volumes. Suits it very well like others have said.

Ginko's character really tops the chart. Somehow he exudes this composed, knowledgable, reliable persona I have yet to find anywhere else to match. It's also interesting to note that though Ginko appears in every chapter, in a majority of them he's depicted in a way that makes him a side character. Chapters focusing on Ginko when he was younger are few, but very interesting to read. I really do wish there was more, but the amount Urushibara has given is just enough to satisfy but still keep some mystery around him. The one thing that will always make me grin is how Ginko basically only wears two outfits. His black turtleneck and white shirt haha!

Del Rey has done a good job, a little on the expensive side though. They've kept the original sfx instead of editing them out, but noted the translated next to it, which is smart. They've also gone for the phonetic sfx approach, for example, instead of "rustle" it would probably be "ksh" or something along the lines... which is unique, much like how the jp sfx are. My earlier volumes from a few years ago aren't so great (fading ink, smudges where the ink hasn't properly dried and printed to the opposite page) but they really upped their game later. Volume 7 has really nice thick paper, so nice that even a page which is pure black won't show through the other side. The downside of this is it makes it a little hard to read (if you're protective of creasing the spine). And the ink, honestly, is lovely block black, no fading to be seen anywhere, double thumbs up for that. I'm a little unhappy they decided to make the last three volumes into an omnibus edition (v8,9,10). It just looks odd on the shelf, and the fact the spine is white instead of the off white/yellow colour they used for the other 7 vols... but that's me being picky. Paper is thinner, so you can read unhindered, but it means you can see through the otherside. They used vol10's cover but I was disappointed they hadn't included v8 and 9's somewhere inside. It should be noted that it literally is 3 books slammed together, contents and tl notes inbetween, not all at the end. I heard Mushishi wasn't doing well in sales, which is a shame to hear, so an omnibus beats no omnibus any day.

Happy and sad to see this end, but a definite recommended read.

... Last updated on December 11th, 2010, 6:33pm
Was this comment useful?  Yes tickmark  No xmark    
I've never seen a manga which could be described as a work of art...   
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by calstine
July 15th, 2009, 6:54am
...before I read Mushishi, that is.

This manga is suitable for any and every age group. I'm serious. Anyone, from a two-year-old to a centenarian, can read this with no fear of coming across even the slightest hint of age-inappropriate content. However, it takes a certain type of intellectual, irrespective of age, to be able to enjoy the true beauty of this tranquil piece of poetry.

The realism of the characters; their behaviour and their lifestyles; the depiction of nature and the sense of personality given to each mushi is simply stunning. It's difficult, if not impossible, to find a manga that's quite so breathtakingly brilliant in its simplicity and matter-of-factness.

The protagonist, Ginko, is the most down-to-earth and engaging persona I've had the pleasure of coming across in any work of fiction so far. He has a calm, decisive, clearly defined personality which makes it simply impossible to dislike him under any circumstance.

But of course it's not just Ginko: every person we meet as we follow him on his journey is an interesting and believable individual in his or her own right; and it's quite easy to feel for, and sympathise with, their plights.

The supernatural premise of the tale, while allowing for the author to be quite creative and original in her approach, also does a fantastic job of helping the reader feel closer to nature, and aiding him to understand the subtle message behind each stand-alone story.

Many people complain about the art being too 'vague' and 'unattractive'. It's a matter of taste, obviously, but in my opinion the simple but appropriately detailed illustrations only serve to enhance the gentle, poetic quality of the story

The conclusion's no "dramatic, thrilling climax," but is still perfect in every way. Unlike most mangaka, who fail to recognize where their talents lie and attempt to convert a perfectly well-written episodic story into a cheap soap opera with a "shocking," "unexpected" ending, Urushibara Yuki has the presence of mind to be content with her tale and manages to execute a finale that fits seamlessly with the rest of the series in terms of mood, quality and effectiveness, while still providing a sense of closure to this fantastical tale of one very special man and his very unique adventures.

Everyone - child, teenager, or adult - should read Mushishi at least once. If you pass up on it, you're really missing out on a most wonderful experience.

... Last updated on December 1st, 2015, 11:05pm
Was this comment useful?  Yes tickmark  No xmark    
Subtly Appealing   
Rating: 9.0 / 10.0
by OppKnox
June 1st, 2009, 4:40pm
Once I was lulled into Mushishi’s dreamlike pacing, I realized the series does have a vague, lingering allure. The title may suggest otherwise, but the true protagonist is nature, or rather everything that comprises Ginko’s world, particularly mushi. The manga’s artistry lies in its lush, ethereal landscapes, while the people tend to look alike, as if the universal human condition is the one constant amidst the unpredictable flow of life. Mushishi is a bit like music without a melody or that favorite album you disliked at first. It grows on you.

Edit: I just realized my comment reiterated what the previous reviewer said. Sorry, though I suppose a little consensus doesn't hurt.

... Last updated on June 1st, 2009, 4:52pm
Was this comment useful?  Yes tickmark  No xmark    
  Pages (3) [ 1 2 3 ] Next Page
Show  entries per page 

You must login to comment for this series! Register an account.
Manga Search