Read an Excerpt From New York’s Top Comic of the Year, Disappearance Diary

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Quick, someone hide the pottery wheel! Photo: Courtesy of ABC

In 1989, veteran manga artist Hideo Azuma left his family and work behind to live as a hermit in the mountains of Japan. In a year fraught with financial tension, Azuma’s memoir of homelessness and menial labor — drawn in a deceptively light cartoon style, and packed with dry humor and desperate sadness — is a timely reminder of how quickly lives can change. You may read Azuma's Disappearance Diary as a cautionary tale, but at least you’ll learn how to make a meal out of a radish and tempura oil.