Rating - ⭐⭐⭐1/2
"A discharged, and spiritually spent, soldier decided to shut himself to a small marine research isle. He was enjoying his solitary life as usual when he saw a nuclear explosion in direction of Seoul, Korea. His nightmare returns."
The Isle is a completed manhwa by Ko Dong Kyun.
On the shorter side with only 15 chapters, this story packs a pretty good punch at its core. The art wasn't exactly the best, but there's no real need to make it super realistic when the story makes up for it. Although, for once, I think this could have benefited with less colour to make it more atmospheric.
Without going into too much detail since, as I said, this is a short story, this follows Jeongmin who is suffering from PTSD due to his past as a soldier. This doesn't hesitate to dive into the more brutal and negative side of the army, which isn't exactly the easiest thing to read about, but it was engrossing nonetheless.
What I didn't like about the story, however, was the addition of Jiyeon, a woman who becomes stranded on the island. I thought the story would be more dismal, so the addition of romantic interest just didn't work for me. She also didn't have much agency as a character as, besides being kind of annoying, she is only there to advance Jeongmin's development.
One minor detail that I did like about this story was that it taught me things I didn't know about nuclear explosions. I had no idea that it would create an EMP that would short circuits anything electric. It also didn't occur to me that acid rain would also be a side effect.
Overall though, if you are looking for something to read on the shorter side that deals with trauma and PTSD, then this might work for you. Keep the subject matter in mind though if you think that it is something that will trigger you.