Karneval is a Japanese manga series by Tōya Mikanagi which originally started serialization in the monthly Josei Manga magazine Monthly Comic Zero Sum published by Ichijinsha on August 28, 2007. There are currently twenty-one volumes released in Japan. A 13-episode anime adaptation by Manglobe aired between April and June 2013. On August 22, 2014, North American manga publisher Yen Press announced the license of the manga, with the first volume to be published on March 24, 2015. Yen Press is releasing Karneval volumes in a 2-in-1 omnibus format.
Nai searches for someone important to him, with only an abandoned bracelet as a clue. Gareki steals and pick-pockets to get by from day to day. The two meet in a strange mansion where they are set up, and soon become wanted criminals by military security operatives. When Nai and Gareki find themselves desperate in a hopeless predicament, they encounter none other than the country’s most powerful defense organization, “Circus”.
- is the main protagonist of the story. He claims to have always been living with a man named Karoku in a forest near Karasuna. When Karoku does not appear one day, Nai ventures outside and finds a trail of blood leading from their home to the sea, and a left-behind bracelet (Circus I.D.). Feeling scared and lonely, he sets out to try finding Karoku with only the abandoned bracelet as a clue. He eventually meets Gareki, who saves Nai from a mansion where a Varuga woman named Mine was keeping him captive. This marks the beginning of their travel together. Despite his unworldly ways, he has an acute sense of hearing that is more well-developed compared to other people’s. Akari, a research doctor at Circus reveals that Nai has the cellular structure of a human and a “niji”, a small, delicate creature found in the forest he came from, and that these cells have managed to coexist unlike the Varuga. He also said that Nai is successfully existing as a new species and that if they were to describe the person who accomplished this, they would certainly be called a genius and that to produce a being like Nai, the creator must have been very devoted.
- A 15-year-old boy who gets money by robbing rich people’s mansions. He’s very intelligent and sharp, his strong point being his knowledge of mechanics. He is also a skilled shooter and likes to carry around a gun. Gareki distrusts people and isn’t very sociable, stating that he hates associating with others. However, despite his arrogant and distant attitude, he does have a more caring side that he doesn’t like showing, seeming to have a soft spot for his friends on the second ship and Nai. He originally thought to use Nai for his robbing schemes but later joins him to find Karoku. When Nai tells Gareki about Karoku knowing that they were together, Gareki realizes that Karoku wants to keep him away from Nai. Gareki works with the Circus organization to help defeat Kafta and Varuga, who killed Tsubaki and Yokata.