Kozue Amano’s Colori Colore Creare is an on-going science fiction manga. It appears to have launched in 2022.
Adorable young Aka lives with her grandfather on the island of Onobori. Focused on his coffee shop, the old man allows Aka and her buffalo-sized cat Kuruchan to run around unsupervised … provided Aka follows certain reasonable guidelines to avoid plummeting to her death over one of Onobori’s many precipices.
One day, a stranger comes to town.
Nodoka Daidai is a Guardian of the Young Leaves, a professional child minder. In this place and time children are rare and very precious. Onobori offers so many opportunities for exuberant tots to suffer horrifying deaths that Aka needs constant supervision if she is to survive until adulthood. In addition it falls to Nodoka to educate Aka.
Nodoka is enthusiastic, patient, and dutiful. Nodoka is also very young, only barely an adult herself. Inexperienced as she is, Nodoka is determined to guide her charge through the dangers of childhood towards responsible adulthood.
Step one: find a friend for Aka who isn’t a feline of monstrous proportions. Fate smiles on Nodoka and Aka. This is at least one other girl in town who is the same age as Aka. Less fortuitously, Uran is a girl of ferocious visage; it is not at all clear that she wants to be friends with anyone, Aka included.
As readers may be aware, Amano is the author of Aria, a science fiction manga I reviewed in the early days of the site. Having become aware that she has been publishing a new SF manga, I tracked down a scanlation I assume is entirely legitimate. I did not enjoy it at all.
I believe the artistic choices are meant to convey the wonder of a world seen through the eyes of an innocent child. Alas, the hallucinatory effect verges on body-horror. Human proportions are grotesque, and the liberties taken with basic anatomy suggest extensive genetic engineering. Aria’s depiction of cats was always alarming; Colori’s Kuruchan is somehow even worse, the stuff of nightmares.
Aka is, I think, supposed to be an adorably cute, innocent tot. To read about her antics is to risk adult-onset diabetes.
It is very likely that children are uncommon because few people are having them. This is a perfectly reasonable scenario for a Japanese person to explore, given Japan’s current circumstances. However, it is also possible that children are rare in Onobori because the town abounds in narrow walkways adjacent to precipitous heights, walkways with no safety rails.
In fact, adults don’t seem terrible common either. I wonder how many adults stepped off cliffs in a moment of fatal inattentiveness?
I am not planning on returning to this manga, so I will share here a revelation that likely would have been a fertile plot resource in later volumes: this manga shares a setting with Aria. Both are set on terraformed Mars; Onobori is an island in the sky, not in the sea.
As far as I can tell, there is no authorized translation of this manga.