An Overdue Conclusion

Way back in February of last year, I decided to sign myself up for someone’s 2013 Manga Reading Challenge. Setting a lofty goal of 250 volumes with a minimum of 80 series of multi-volume length for myself, I kicked off the Challenge  full of optimism and spirit, determined to read and write about as much manga as could get my hands on.

Well, it only takes a quick glance at my 2013 Manga Reading Challenge category to see how quickly that dream went down the drain. Truth be told, I forgot about my goal a couple weeks into the Challenge and settled for reading whatever seemed interesting with the Challenge acting only as a bit of motivation to keep reading. With my list starting out at a generous  mere 100 completed series at the start of the Challenge and ending up at its current size of 168, I, to no one’s surprise, ended up falling a bit short of my series goal…and probably horrifically short on my volume goal. That said, if anything, I would say the Challenge ended up being a great success.

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2013 MRC Review: Complex

complex

Complex is a yaoi that, over the course of four volumes, attempts to chronicle the lives of a couple, Tatsuya Fujoika and Junichi Shinozaki. The manga follows the boys from childhood to death, looking at the various trials and triumphs the two experience throughout their relationship, with each chapter typically focusing on a different year in the boys’ lives. At a four volume length, it’s an ambitious story, a bit too ambitious if you ask me. I’ll get it out of the way now and say that this isn’t a manga that I’d recommend to anyone. Though the story does have some standout moments, those are often overshadowed by the manga’s numerous problems, most of which revolve around the handling of the story and characters. Continue reading

2013 MRC: First Volume Impressions: Mousou Elektel

Mousou Elektel

The further I delve into the world of BL, the more I’m discovering that beyond the few really good ones that go through the hassle of developing their characters, most tend to focus on, and relish in, the sex. Even the good ones, save maybe one or two that I’ve read so far, have their fair share of it. In this sense, Mousou Elektel, though relatively tame by yaoi standards, doesn’t really deviate from the usual yaoi approach to romance with more emphasis on sexy time rather than bonding/normal stuff time. Continue reading

2013 MRC Review: 100% no Kimi e (100% to You)

100% ni kimi e

Brought to us by the same pen that is currently drawing everyone’s favorite card game anime of the moment (Chihayafuru) is 100% no Kimi e, or 100% to You, a short, two volume shoujo that tells the tale of a high school girl who adopts a puppy with a guy in her class, and, as all shoujo go, gradually finds herself falling in love with him. For the most part the story is pretty standard with a few spins. Though the ending leaves a bit to be desired in terms of satisfaction, in its entirety the manga is pretty satisfactory with a heroine that isn’t one of the manga brainless dunces that plague the genre and a story that is well executed in terms of its sweetness.
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Now the Challenge Really Begins

honeyandclover

And so Honey and Clover Vol. 1 becomes the first out of my planned 250 manga volumes to be finished. Since it’s my first 2013 Manga Read challenge volume I figured I might as well dedicate a short post to my thoughts on it in order to really kick off the Challenge.

So Honey and Clover volume 1. I watched a bit of the anime a few ago, and though I never got around to finishing it, I remember liking it a lot because of the unrequited love storyline. I thought the drama was really well done in that I empathized with the characters and couldn’t help but hope each would end up finding some sort of happiness in the end. When I saw that my local library had the series I jumped on the first few volumes to see what the manga version was like, and as it turns out, the first volume, at least, is pretty good. Continue reading