For whatever reason, mysteries and school life go hand-in-hand. All of the natural drama that occurs in school just offers itself to the subterfuge that needs to occur to have a good mystery. There is a natural tension that can be exploited. That being said, it could be simple or an overall rollercoaster, which is what we saw with Arisa by Natsumi Ando.
I think it was until the very end that I did not know what was going on in this story as we follow Tsubasa, who is trying to figure out why her sister, Arisa, tried to commit suicide. The only information she has is that it has something to do with her school, so Tsubasa goes undercover as Arisa. Going in, I thought this was going to be very shoujo-y, given the author, but I would say that anyone who loves manga and mystery will enjoy this. Yes, there are shoujo elements, but they are overwhelmed by the want to get the full story.
This manga talks about self-harm as these are thoughts several characters have had or actually carried out. Take care if you decided to read this.
After finishing the first series, as soon as I found out there was a sequel, I had to read it. Unfortunately, Modotte! Mamotte! Lollipop by Michiyo Kikuta, the sequel to Mamotte! Lollipop, fell into the trap that many sequels do. It would have been an exciting continuation of the story. All the characters being older had it not been the same story. And I mean exact—all of the plot points were the same. The only difference was that the characters weren’t gradually introduced. Since there are not any new characters, they all start at the same time.
Overall, it is a simple read and quick to go through. There’s just the added romance element that doesn’t really add to anything since the love-triangle has been resolved. It wasn’t bad; it just didn’t add anything to the story.
It’s been a while since I read a cutesy manga. It’s been too long if I’m honest, but I think this was the best one to get me started again. Mamotte! Lollipop by Michiyo Kikuta was way cuter than it had any right to be. It’s a mixture of shoujo, magic, romance, and friendship that was just really cohesive and came together nicely. A high schooler named Nina accidentally gets involved with a magic contest from another world, and hijinks ensue. One thing I did love was that there was a well-written love triangle. In lots of media, it can become super obvious who the protagonist will get with because one of their options is trash. In this story, although I did prefer one of the boys over the other, I would have been happy no matter who she would have ended up with. They both were fully fleshed out and intriguing. If you like the cutesy stuff as well, I would definitely suggest reading this. There’s also a squeal that I need to get into as well. I just hope it’s a fair sequel worth reading.
Reading Part 3 of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure or Stardust Crusaders was an event. Not only was this part the longest of the three, it introduced a totally new concept, and it did so super well. It was such an amazing thing to see how they mixed the concept of Hamon that was prevalent in the pervious parts and mixed it together to introduce the concept of stands. Stands , put simpily, are a manifestation of your soul. Each one, at least in this part, were expressed as tarot cards. It was just really cool to see a mixture of traditional and new creativity. So far, this is my favorite part, followed by Battle Tendency and Panthom Blood. Honestly, each part just gets better and better.
As I am writing this, I finished reading Vampire Knight not even ten minutes ago. I’m still trying to figure out the world’s structures because it was strange. I enjoyed the story, don’t get me wrong, even though somethings were spoiled for me ahead of time (I promise not to spoil anything here, guys.) It’s just a weird story, and I completely understand why I was told to read and not to read it at the same time. I had mixed reviews while reading it. Half-way through, I put it down, because it made my head hurt. It took me a couple of months to pick back up. At the very end, when the action started to really kick in, I couldn’t put it down. In my personal opinion, there was way too much filler in the middle trying to transition from one arc to another. It was just really awkwardly executed. Maybe the anime executed this differently and better. I’d heard better views from the anime, even though the story is weird.
After watching the amazing three-episode saga that was Gunsmith Cats, I just had to read it. Unfortunately, I was unable to find the original manga, but I was able to read the sequel. I still found it fantastic. All of the characters were well written and had such different personalities. There is an overarching storyline that flows so well together. I did find it a bit slow towards the middle, but it picked back up at just the right moments. This manga is a bit on the mature side, but it’s not too bad in my opinion. Considering the fact that this manga takes place in America – Chicago, in fact – you don’t need to have intimate knowledge of the area like I was expecting. It just happens to take place in America. There was just a diversity of characters, but I do feel like I was missing some background on the characters and some of their motivations. I do wish that at some point I can find the original manga so that I can get the information that I think I missed by only reading the sequel. If anyone knows where I can find it, please please please tell me. It would be very much appreciated.
I have recently finished the second part of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure known as Sentou Chuuryuu or Battle Tendency. I feel that it was just as good as the first part. This adventure stars the grandson of the original JoJo has he needs to go out and face more vampires. The one thing that was really iffy about this part was that one of the heroes is a Nazi. Yes, a Nazi. The JoJo of this part is an American, and the story takes place just before the start of WWII and America’s entry into the war. It’s a very small part, but you also have to remember that this is a Japanese story. The Japanese were allied with Germany. I’ve seen this a couple of times in anime, but it is still such a culture shock whenever I see this thing. Once you get over this fact, it’s an enjoyable part. They aren’t a focal point, and only one has a name. The villains are so enjoyable to see, and our hero is not the gentleman that his grandfather.
At this point, my ratings are:
- Battle Tendency
- Phantom Blood
As I am writing this, I have literally just finished reading the first part of JoJo no Kimyou na Bouken or JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure. If you haven’t heard of the is story, it follows different generations of this family known as the Joestars, and everyone’s name begins with Jo. This first part is known as Phantom Blood, and it starts all of the craziness that this family must undergo. It has a maniacal villain with obviously flawed plans, but you continue your love-hate relationship with him anyways. This part and short and sweet with only five volumes. It’s a quick read, but enjoyable the entire way through. I think you will love it too.
I’ll be reviewing every part of this series, so still around to see how I feel about every generation that we follow.
I feel like this is an amazing-ish title to go along with such an outstanding manga. I recently finished the manga Fullmetal Alchemist. If you want to read my review of Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, click here. The manga, let me tell you, was so much better. I pushed through until the very end. I even neglected doing homework so that I could finish reading it. I felt the intensity of the last arc, same as I did when watching the anime. This manga also makes me even more scared of watching the original FMA anime. I’ve been told by some people that the changes don’t make any sense and that overall it is bad, but I was also told that the feelings are more intense. I’m going to wait a bit longer before watching that one, so that I forget some of what happened so that I can judge it as its own thing.
Very recently, I finished the manga Kitchen Princess by Natsumi Ando. I read all ten volumes in a time frame of way less than twenty-four hours. I was just captured into it. One of my friends, who doesn’t really like shojo, even recommended this for me, and this manga is just shojo-y. That probably isn’t a real thing, but let’s just go with it. I would recommend this to practically everyone, if they love shojo as much as I did. And yes, there is a much of talk about recipes, because the protagonist is an amazing cook. But the cool thing is that there are recipes for everything made at the end of each volume. I definitely want to try some of those. I’m getting hungry just thinking about it. I would watch it, if only it was made into one.
Have any manga to recommend to me? Please tell me. I’m always looking for more. It even doesn’t have to be shojo. 😉