Press Release for Life

Dr. Axtell wrote the postscript for this popular Tokyopop series

TOKYOPOP announced the release of the popular Japanese shojo manga series Life. Tackling real life subjects of teen angst and self-torment such as cutting, suicide, bullying, and gangs in a candid and honest manner, Life features the work of acclaimed manga-ka Keiko Suenobu and includes a purposeful postscript written by licensed clinical psychologist, Susan M. Axtell, Psy.D.

Ayumu and her best friend, Shii-chan, are studying for their all-important high school entrance exams. Test results come back and Ayumu gets into the high school of her choice while Shii-chan doesn’t! The pain of losing Shii-chan’s friendship is so great that Ayumu starts cutting her wrists for comfort. To compound matters, she then makes a friend that might lead her deeper into a downward spiral.

“Life is about friendships and relationships –how easily they can be shattered and how hard it is to put the pieces back together,” says series editor Julie Taylor. “Ayumu’s struggle and her cycle of self-loathing will ring very true to a lot of girls out there, and I hope the book will show that they’re definitely not alone and that there’s a way out. You go on a real emotional roller coaster with this series. Life is intense, cathartic, and impossible to put down!”

“Life portrays the experience of Ayumu, who is faced with the pressures of teenage life, and is struggling with emotions that sometimes feel too strong for her to handle,” says Dr. Axtell. “She discovers that hurting herself makes her feel better—temporarily, anyway.” Axtell continues: “Most people are learning about self-injury—it may even seem like a fad in some circles, but self-injury is not an effective way of coping.”

Life will be available in April at all major book, comic, video, specialty and music stores nationwide at $9.99

Press Release, Tokyopop, February 26, 2006