I love Manga’s and have been reading them for a long time but let’s be honest, as a hobby it’s an expensive one. So I’ve decided to split the series between those I think are worth saving up for & those I’d personally wouldn’t recommend.
This month’s Manga Reviews is going to be a little different as I’m going to do a bundle set of “worthwhile investing in” recommendations from the series I’ve been reading this year. Enjoy. 😀
worthwhile investing in
Author: Hitoshi Iwaaki
Publisher: Del Rey / Kodansha Comics
Series Rating: 4 Stars
They arrive in silence and darkness. They descend from the skies. They have a hunger for human flesh. They are everywhere. They are parasites, alien creatures who must invade – and take control of – a human host to survive. And once they have infected their victims, they can assume any deadly form they choose: monsters with giant teeth, winged demons, creatures with blades for hands. But most have chosen to conceal their lethal purpose behind ordinary human faces. So no one knows their secret – except an ordinary high school student. Shin is battling for control of his own body against an alien parasite, but can he find a way to warn humanity of the horrors to come?
Series Review: Firstly a warning, Parasyte is horror – not the fluffy kind.
It’s violent and the artwork backs this up.
I personally prefer creepy over violent horror but Parasyte didn’t bother me, because it’s not just about gore and death – there is plenty of plot. Shin’s parasite didn’t succeed in taking him over, instead he’s trapped in Shin’s hand and the two of them develop and odd (and sometimes rather amusing) relationship. Meanwhile, around them the bodies count is going up.
There were some parts of this story that have some serious emotional punch (you’ll know the ones I mean when you read Parasyte) and I was impressed by how much the first few volumes in this series got to me. Shin’s character slowly begins to change as the story progresses, is it because of what’s happening or because of the parasite?
Parasyte has an overall story arc of why they aliens have come, which brings up another set of questions for you to ponder. As does the conclusion to the series.
Author: Natsumi Ando
Publisher: Del Rey / Kodansha Comics
Series Rating: 3.5Stars (first few volumes are 4 Stars)
Tsubasa thinks that her pretty and popular twin sister, Arisa, has the perfect life. Everyone at school loves Arisa—unlike the hot-tempered Tsubasa, whose nickname is “the Demon Princess.” But when Arisa attempts suicide, Tsubasa learns that her seemingly perfect sister has been keeping some dark secrets. Now Tsubasa is going undercover at school—disguised as Arisa—in search of the truth. But will Arisa’s secrets shatter Tsubasa’s life, too?
Series Review: I read this series in one sitting, which is quite telling in itself. However I will say now that the story does lag a bit after a few volumes and loses something of the great set up it had at the beginning. That said, the author Natsumi Ando is good at ending chapters/volumes with cliff-hangers. So you get to the end of one book and immediately want to pick up the next one. (Case in point – me.)
The art is excellent and was part of the reason I decided to pick this series up. As much as story is important if you don’t like that images it’s a struggle to continue but for this genre (shojo) Natsumi Ando style fits beautifully.
Tsubasa is likable and determined to find out what happened to her sister. As reader it was easy to be on her side. This series requires suspension of disbelief to some extent but you’ll enjoy Arisa more for it.
Title: Beast Master
Author: Kyousuke Motomi
Publisher: VIZ Media
Series Rating: 3.5 Stars
Leo Aoi looks like a crazy animal with wild eyes–and no one at his new high school will go near him! He does seem to have a special connection with animals though, which intrigues overzealous animal-lover Yuiko Kubozuka. In reality, Leo isn’t as frightening as he appears, but Yuiko finds out that he goes berserk whenever he sees blood! Will Yuiko be able to get through to Leo during these violent fits? Or will Leo’s ferocious side eventually devour her?
Series Review: I read this in recommendation because the blurb was “he goes berserk whenever he sees blood” ahm really? Ok then… To be fair I’m not sure how’d you’d blurb this story better without given the plot away completely, because – well it’s a bit different.
Beast Master is adorably cute though.
To be honest a part of me still isn’t quite sure why I liked it so much but maybe it’s as simple as “it’s cute”. The story is contained in two volumes so it won’t take you long to read (and sometimes that’s quite nice). Plus Beast Master has likable characters and good artwork.
If you’re looking for a break from long running series with something light-hearted this is ideal.