Tsukasa Hojo is a mangaka who was born in 1959. Mangaka are artists who draw and create manga, a specific form of Japanese comic books. Hojo knew he liked to draw when he was very young, and attended Kyushu Sangyo University to study technical design. It is then that he truly came to love the manga world and took his shot drawing it. A few manga series later, he wound up with his most popular series: City Hunter. City Hunter brought Hojo into the main stream manga world, and cemented his place in history as a true mangaka. Hojo is very humble, stating that he never really had any inspiration, only that he was looking to meet his deadline every time he drew.
City Hunter became famous very quickly after it was released in 1985. It is about Ryo Saeba, a “sweeper” who does his best to get crime out of his town and off the city streets. Ryo has a partner in Kaori Makimura. Kaori manages the business side of the company generally. The two of them take on missions to guard people, and to investigate people. Unlike most people in this profession, Ryo and Kaori do not have a number in the phone book to allow clients to contact them. Instead, clients have to write “XYZ” on a blackboard at a train station in Japan. If they do this, Ryo will be there.
The two get into tons of trouble, especially as most of the jobs involve Ryo working closely with a beautiful woman, which makes Kaori very jealous. The two do wind up falling in love. City Hunter became a huge hit, running for an unheard of eight years in the popular Shonen Jump magazine. It became an anime from 1987 to 1991, and even had a movie made out of it.
Hojo created a manga known as Cat’s Eye before he did City Hunter. Cat’s Eye ran from 1981 to 1985, and focused on three sisters: Hitomi, Ai and Rui. These sisters run a café during the day, and are art thieves, or cat burglars, at night. The reason they steal the art they do is in an effort to get their father to contact them. Things get tricky, though, when they realize that Hitomi’s fiancé is the one on the case, trying to capture the Cat’s Eye girls.
In 2001, Hojo once again entered the City Hunter world with Angel Heart. This is a story about Li Xiang Ying, a trained assassin who winds up losing her heart in a tragic scene. The heart put into her is that of Kaori, the City Hunter Ryo’s wife, who died during a car accident. Xiang Ying finds Ryo and he takes her in, claiming that she is like the daughter he and Kaori never had, because they share a heart. She is able to see Kaori’s memories, and winds up becoming a conduit for Kaori to contact Ryo again. Kaori can actually almost physically control Xiang Ying, by making her heart ache or her fingers refuse to pull the trigger.