Ao Haru Ride Volume 3

Io Sakisaka’s Ao Haru Ride volume 3 brings the students back to the school setting (after the retreat of volume 2) and introduces a new conflict. After having her eyes opened to what friendship should mean in volume 1, Futaba is challenged by a passing comment made by new friend Yuri. Yuri likes Kou, it turns out. Futaba doesn’t want to hurt or compete with her friend, particularly since she’s unsure how deep her feelings for Kou go. Can she […]

Read more

Behind the Scenes!! Volume 6

When I talked about the previous volume in this series, which came out last year, I was about ready for it to end. (Volume 7, the last, is due out later this year.) I enjoyed Behind the Scenes!! volume 6 more than I did volume 5, but I think the length is about right, with no need to extend further. One thing that helped was re-reading 5 before diving into 6. Although I couldn’t tell you the detailed differences between […]

Read more

Everyone’s Getting Married Volume 9

Unlike my usual practice, this discussion of Everyone’s Getting Married volume 9 will not avoid spoilers. It’s the final volume of the series, anyway, and the happy ending is given away right there on the cover. When we left our troubled couple of Asuka and Ryu at the end of volume 8, she had just declared her intention to break up with him, since he was working for several years in the US and she thought she was distracting him […]

Read more

Orange: The Complete Collection

After giving up on Ichigo Takano’s Dreamin’ Sun, I thought I’d try their Orange, because I was intrigued by the time travel aspect. (There’s a mini-boom in these “what if I knew then what I know now” manga, including Again!! and Erased.) Naho is a 16-year-old high schooler who gets a letter that says it’s from herself ten years in the future. It tells her not to invite new student Naruse to walk home with her and her group of […]

Read more

Ao Haru Ride Volume 2

Ao Haru Ride is the current shojo series I’m most invested in. Volume 2 continues its air of melancholic and uncertain young love by moving its leads, Futaba and Kou, into the same school class. Futaba has taken the lessons of the first book to heart, trying to create a friendlier air in her classroom, but she doesn’t have the popularity or leadership to do so. Refusing to give up, and inspired by wanting Kou to think well of her, […]

Read more

Is Kichijoji the Only Place to Live? Volume 5

Is Kichijoji the Only Place to Live? volume 5 keeps the series, about finding young women the perfect apartment, fresh in two ways. Author MAKIHIROCHI continues to find different reasons and challenges for the house-hunters, while we see more about what the real estate agent twins are doing for their own living space. The first chapter presents a young woman moving out on her own for the first time, accompanied by her mother, who finds fault with everything. Can the […]

Read more

Descending Stories: Showa Genroku Rakugo Shinju Volume 9

As the series prepares for its conclusion (volume 10 is the final one), the characters in Descending Stories: Showa Genroku Rakugo Shinju volume 9 contemplate the pending retirement of Yakumo, the last rakugo master. Yakumo and an old friend, a gangster, begin the volume with a garden stroll while they reflect on how much things have changed. It’s a mood I can empathize with more and more. It’s wonderful that so many people value Yakumo’s work and want to tell […]

Read more

Satoko and Nada

Satoko and Nada means well and looks unusual for manga. Created by Yupechika, it’s the story of two college roommates in America. Satoko is Japanese, and Nada is a Saudi Arabian Muslim who wears a hijab. The series’ origin as a 4-koma (four-panel strip) online is apparent in its simple art style, with flat, minimal figures and each page a complete comic. But most aren’t going to read this for impressive visuals. The appeal is seeing two very different people […]

Read more
1 2 3 88