To start reading with no spoilers at all, head over here.
When Hito flees his home in Edo, Japan, two mischievous wisps spirit him away to the Labyrinth — a vast prison for lost souls from which no one has ever escaped. Amid twisting corridors and perplexing illusions, Hito faces countless yōkai monsters, from mountain trolls, to ghosts of the drowned, to the bird-like tengu. Now, he wishes only for a way home. But he can’t remember why he ran away in the first place, and his memories of his family are quickly fading.
Soon he meets Ren, an excitable American girl with incredible magic powers. Ashamed for relying on her for protection, Hito craves strength like Ren’s so he can defeat his wisp captors and force them to set him free. But when a mysterious spirit offers him exactly what he desires, is it worth the price? He’ll have to decide soon, before the Labyrinth’s malevolent consciousness creeps into his mind, stealing away his sense of self and driving him to madness.
Hitodama (Hee-toh-dah-muh) is a web novel for adults and middle grade kids. It originated as an amateur video game I developed years ago, and since then has evolved into something much bigger than I originally expected. It’s a spooky story that incorporates elements from both Japanese and European folklore.
I’d be delighted if you stick around and read the book. Thanks for reading.
Credit to Ether for the header images.