Luna’s Manga Reviews #15

Zom 100: Bucket List of the Dead, Vol. 3 by Haro Aso and Kōtarō Takata (Illustrations)

55711459Surviving a zombie apocalypse beats being a wage slave any day! After spending years slaving away for a soul-crushing company, Akira’s life has lost its luster. But when a zombie apocalypse ravages his town, it gives him the push he needs to live for himself. Now Akira’s on a mission to complete all 100 items on his bucket list before he…well, kicks the bucket.

One by one, Akira has been checking little items like cleaning his room and snagging a new TV off his bucket list. Now, having grown weary of the hotbed of infection that is Tokyo, Akira makes the decision to head to his parents’ home in Gunma. But to get there, he needs to get past his former boss!

Thank you, Viz Media LLC for the review copy.

Review:  I am glad I stuck with this series, each volume gets better. Unlike the first two books this one is more serious as Akira re-unites with someone he had thought he’d never have to see again. That storyline, along with backstory for one of the other characters takes up most of this instalment.

While this book wasn’t as fun as the previous ones it developed the characters, giving context to actions and in Akira’s case making him more likable.

Expected publication: August 17th 2021 by VIZ Media LLC

 

The King’s Beast, Vol. 3 by Rei Toma

55711464

A smoldering tale of romance and revenge set in the world of the New York Times best seller Dawn of the Arcana!

Legend says that a sacred beast appears in the time of a great king…

Ajin are people who bear the attributes of beasts, and in this kingdom Ajin men are forced to serve in the military and Ajin women in the brothels. The Ajin boys who show signs of special abilities are conscripted to serve in the imperial palace as beast servants—status symbols and shields for their royal masters, to be kept or discarded on a whim. When Rangetsu’s twin brother Sogetsu showed signs of such abilities, he was ripped from her arms and given to Prince Tenyou as a beast servant, where he quickly fell victim to bloody royal intrigues. Now in a world that promises only bitterness, Rangetsu’s one hope is to disguise herself as a man and find a way into the palace to avenge her brother!

Rangetsu hasn’t given up on vengeance, but nothing about the imperial palace is simple. Now that she knows and trusts Prince Tenyou, she has come to see that her most important duty is to keep him alive for the sake of all Ajin—even at the cost of her own life!

Thank you, Viz Media LLC for the review copy.

Review:  As much as I’m enjoying this series overall, I felt like this volume wasn’t as good as the previous. A huge portion of the book was taken up by Rangetsu’s doubt; self-doubt, doubt of the prince, doubt about everything. While is part of her character building it became so much that I felt it conflicted with how she is presented in the previous stories. She has a mission and is consumed by this, she is strong, determined and kicks butt without much hesitation.

I like how Rangetsu was previously presented. Her personality and her belief system. A lot of this seemed to have been swallowed up but the doubt in this book so I’m not sure what her character is anymore.

The art and overall intrigue presented within the palace is definitely still holding my attention and I hope the next volume will be more like the first two books.

The King’s Beast is out now!

 

The Fox’s Kiss (Koyoi Kimi to Kiss no Chigiri o #1) by Saki Aikaw

37673614._SY475_Koharu discovers that she now has the power to heal demons like her late grandmother did. The overly self-confident fox demon Iori takes a liking to her. The sudden kiss was a ritual of engagement?! What will happen to Koharu now that she has to live with Iori in human form…?!

Thank you, Akita Publishing Co.,Ltd for the review copy.

Review: The books slowly improves after the first chapter but overall I think there is a struggle between the story and the execution in telling it. This is not helped by the fact that both main characters are unlikeable. I mean the story begins with Koharu moaning about being bored in the countryside at her grandmother’s funeral. An event that she doesn’t appear to have any emotional connection to. We have flashbacks to moments with her grandmother but at no point does Koharu seem to care that this woman is dead.

Then Iori enters the scene, the story goes from 10 to 100 in pacing, but the format is chunky. The actions and changes in the characters feel like they are missing context. Two chapters down and they are engaged and Iori has moved in and is at Koharu’s school. Everything just is and a lot of the time it reads like a story that had a checklist of tropes, familiar story moments being checked off without the characters or story having a chance to develop.

I would recommend Kamisama Kiss instead. 😦

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