(slightly spoilerish for this volume if you haven't read the description, and also an entirely irrelevant review but ssh)
Ah, the Manhunt! Fun for the...more(slightly spoilerish for this volume if you haven't read the description, and also an entirely irrelevant review but ssh)
Ah, the Manhunt! Fun for the whole family! But not before we get Nezumi proving his stamina to Shion by asking him for a dance. Because that was obviously the only way to show that off, thank you, Nezumi. The mice really appreciated it too by the looks of it. (I'm once again sorry for calling him Nezumi by the way, it's too ingrained in my brain at this point. It's Rat in the translation. Which makes perfect sense, it's just that my brain does an auto-replacement.)
So, yeah. The Manhunt and the Correctional Facility. This is where No. 6 shows its real face in more than just words, and though the art is relatively clean, it's still painful to read. (There's still blood, so be warned if you're easily triggered by that.) We also get small glimpses of what is happening to Safu, which no, no no no NO NOPE. I just. No.
(On a translating note, it looks like Rou just became the Elder, which is basically what Rou means indeed. I was just wondering because unlike with Nezumi and Inukashi, his name is written in kanji instead of katakana. I'm gonna assume this means Sasori will indeed become Scorpion when we learn his name in the next volume. I didn't in fact learn Sasori means scorpion until I went to translate the guide, but there we go. Learning Japanese vocabulary with No. 6 one creepy word at the time!)
Finally, as a bonus, we get a short story that had to be cut from the main manga to the artist's regret, in which Shion remembers cleaning the books in the underground room and finding the first aid kit from when they were twelve. (Complete with flashback with little Nezumi looking prettier than he did in the actual chapter, because these are Shion's memories so of course. I mean, likely also art evolving, but also that, let's be honest here.) There's also a couple of extra pages with Inukashi, which is always nice, and that little four-panel comic where Nezumi becomes distracted by Shion's reading to the mice and tunes in, which is quite possibly my favourite extra so yay~ (man, with all the cute side stories thrown in, you'd almost forget how horrifying the main story can get.)(less)
Mostly an introduction to various topics in astronomy, but a nice read (and very gorgeous photos and illustrations). It runs from the big bang until t...moreMostly an introduction to various topics in astronomy, but a nice read (and very gorgeous photos and illustrations). It runs from the big bang until the possible end of the universe, noting years of milestones in between. It also attempts to bring in astronomy through the ages from other parts of the world and talk more about women's influence in astronomy. It's very marginal in both cases, unfortunately, but at least an attempt was made. Astronomy books date pretty fast, but this book was published in 2013, and is therefore up to date with the major milestones. Until 2015, I guess, when New Horizons is scheduled to fly past Pluto and finally show us what the dwarf planet looks like.
There's a lot of resources in the end, and I have to add a bonus star for the author citing 'The restaurant at the end of the universe' as the resource for the final page.(less)
Hm, I know there's still some things to solve, but I actually think this would have been a good ending volume too... Anyway, I already have volume 18,...moreHm, I know there's still some things to solve, but I actually think this would have been a good ending volume too... Anyway, I already have volume 18, so I'll reread it later. With this volume though, I finally completed my collection, which is nothing worthwhile to mention in a proper review but I'm not doing proper reviews anyway so HA. (Seriously though, it's been like... six years since I first got into Ouran? Maybe more? My Renge cosplay dates back to 2008, so before that time at the very least. Also Renge was A+ especially in this volume ok.)(less)
Ah yes, volume four. Think most shippers have this one memorized for the first chapter XD; (yeah I'm including myself there, so shush) I forgot that th...moreAh yes, volume four. Think most shippers have this one memorized for the first chapter XD; (yeah I'm including myself there, so shush) I forgot that this was quite a violent volume, though of course things are only going downhill from hereon in that department. (view spoiler)[Hello, Manhunt and Correctional Facility. (hide spoiler)] But this volume also had a lot of character moments, and this volume is where the story really starts to pick up. Safu though ;;; Safuuuu honeyyy. And I HATE THAT CREEPER IN HIS WHITE COAT SO MUCH. -cough- yeah, okay. At some points I was doubting the translation a bit - I can't compare to the original Japanese manga however, and I have the novels fresh on my mind, so maybe it's a manga-novel difference. Nothing actually annoying, anyway. Also, I just love Hino's drawing style a lot ok ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
And so, the next chapter of No. 6 begins. Oh, Safu. (I love Safu ok.) Volume 3 of the manga corresponds to volume 2 and part of volume 3 of the origina...moreAnd so, the next chapter of No. 6 begins. Oh, Safu. (I love Safu ok.) Volume 3 of the manga corresponds to volume 2 and part of volume 3 of the original novels, which it follows very faithfully. Some scenes have been removed or altered, but overall, it's a very faithful adaptation.
Once again, the translation is good, with some choices I'm quite happy with (like the line (view spoiler)['I'm attracted to you', which is often translated as 'I'm drawn to you'. The original Japanese said 'kimi ni hikarete iru', which does in fact mean 'drawn', if it weren't for the kanji being used here that really implies attraction. So I'm glad they opted for 'attracted'. (Come on, Shion isn't subtle and especially not in this scene.)) (hide spoiler)] And in case you wondered after my last review, they're going for gender neutrality for Dogkeeper indeed. Yay! (Only one personal pronoun for Dogkeeper was used, in Kino's after notes, and it was 'them'.)
As usual, some extras are included after the main story: the short story 'the gift of a memory', set at the end of volume 1, and several four-panel comics which I love love love (he just really likes your white hair, Shion, ssh). Also included are the full original covers of the first three volumes, unfortunately not in colour, but hey! (The English covers are edited and given a more sci-fi look. However, the title font for the Japanese covers of the first three volumes was so big it covered half the art anyway.)
hm, it's been a No. 6 kinda year now that I look at my 'books in 2013' list... Oh ssh. Anyway, I love Kino's artwork for the series, and I just adore the characters, so screw it, five stars.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
Onto volume two! And from hereon, Shion's hair will be white, as the cover subtly spoils *cough*. I actually keep forgetting it used to be brown...
Hav...moreOnto volume two! And from hereon, Shion's hair will be white, as the cover subtly spoils *cough*. I actually keep forgetting it used to be brown...
Having very recently reread the first three novels again, I really start to notice just how faithful the manga adaptation is to the novels. Minor changes have been made and will be made for the sake of the medium of course, but a lot of lines and scenes made it literally into the manga. You can decide if that's a plus or a con - for me, it's a definite plus. The main reason I picked up the manga as well as the novels is because of the art style, so it makes me happy to see the same scenes I love now in Kino's style. (okay, that and it's a back up, in case my Japanese sinks back so far that I need some straws to grasp to get back into the novels again. I hope it doesn't get to that point of course, but yeah.) It helps me form a better mental image of the West Block too as I reread the novels.
Translation is mostly very natural again, though my brain still auto-replaces Rat with Nezumi (and now Dogkeeper with Inukashi, because this volume introduces Inukashi and therefore immediately gets bonus points). Seriously, I can't get used to it. Again, I get the choice, but my brain is a lost cause and sticks with Nezumi forever after. Oh well. Upon rebrowsing the volume for this very insightful -hohum- review, I noticed no gender pronouns seem to be used for Dogkeeper so far. Kind of hoping that keeps up! I know it's a very minor detail in the grander scheme of things, but ssh.
This volume also comes with some extras, namely a report of the voice recordings for the anime drawn by Kino, and some four panel comics, mostly with the boys being domestic, which is always a plus and I would definitely buy 10+ volumes with just that I'm not kidding.
Also, Shion with puppies. I'm just saying.
Yeah, I'm not the most critical reviewer since I just love the series so much, especially the characters who really are the heart of it. Sorry. Five stars because reasons, in that case.(less)
Omigosh the art is adorable ahh. I love these volumes. As I've been in a Kingdom Hearts kind of mood these past couple of, eh, months (years?), I'll b...moreOmigosh the art is adorable ahh. I love these volumes. As I've been in a Kingdom Hearts kind of mood these past couple of, eh, months (years?), I'll be rambling a bit below in the spoilers section. Feel free to ignore as it's not a proper review, just me comparing things to the game and general comments and generally not making a lot of sense out of context.
This second volume wraps up the Final Mix version of the Kingdom Hearts 1 manga adaptation - pretty big volumes to fit in the original five, I think it was? Anyway, you read this left to right. ETA: apparently this is how it was released in Japan too? I haven't found 100% confirmation yet but it would make sense, considering the panels run the right way (Sora wields the keyblade righthanded etc). Nothing's mirrored, then! EDIT END
A lot of the original dialogue from the game was kept, but some extra things were added too, and small details were changed as well. Not all worlds were featured in the manga, by the way. No Deep Jungle (copyright issues?) or Halloween Town. (Oogie Boogie's fault? Since it's supposed to be All Ages and all.)
Some general (sometimes spoilerific) commentary as I read the volumes:
(view spoiler)[- Sora doesn't wear his shoes to bed in the manga! That is a comforting thought. It actually looks like he can remove his clothing too, which must take a while with all the belts and zippers and stuff.
- The gummi ship actually honestly runs on smiles as its fuel I am still not over this
- Donald can use Cure from the very beginning are you kidding me stupid duck you could have actually been useful in the game.
- Cid has a Cid Cannon to shoot heartless with. I just.
- Sora's encounter with the lady who ended up losing her heart to the heartless sure was... interesting. All Ages this manga, you say???
- Riku looks legit creepy here the minute he walks to the dark side, I'm sorry Riku.
- yay for very short but actual flashes to the Destiny Islands trio as little kids! Seriously though, I don't think any of the games (maybe Chain of Memories? I still need to play it so) features all three of them together as kids which is an injustice to the world.
- Sora honey I love you, but it has to be pretty painful for tiny Riku that you went around and took Kairi to the secret spot 'just for me and Riku' and all that. I think the implication is that Riku walked into the cave alone and found the carving Sora and Kairi made of each other? Ouch. - But then an immediate skip to Riku stranded in Hollow Bastion going 'I should have tried that Paopu thing' and more ouch.
- Actually confused now about the door in the secret place and Riku - because he noticed it when he was little, so did Ansem latch onto him way back then or? I'm not entirely sure in how much I can use the game canon since there are small differences to begin with, and I'm not really sure if the Birth by Sleep plot was already conceived when the manga was drawn, so this doesn't help. A reread is in place. Yes. Several. And replays. Yep. Totally for research and all.
- Phil apparently forgot he'd asked Hercules to clean the toilets but that's okay because Herc cleaned them anyway! Yes this is totally relevant, shut up.
- Atlantica people just got less stupid as we don't actually get to see the keyhole 2984398 times before they 'discover' it. (Still though Triton you could have just told Sora to lock the damn keyhole to begin with since that was his plan ANYWAY but alright.)
- Are you kidding me they quote the entire 'IT IS I ANSEM SEEKER OF DARKNESS' 'There's no way you're taking Kairi's heart!' speech and then skip the boss fight. Ansem is just all 'yo stab yourself and release Kairi's heart to complete the keyhole' and Sora does just that. Why. Did I have to fight him. Again. In the actual game.
- Sora manages to be super cute as a squishy wiggly Shadow omg (like he already was in the game but he's just generally adorable in the manga so that helps). And Kairi bless 'no I can feel it's him and look, his calves are the same shape!' Kairi hon how did you even notice that
- Ansem Seeker of Darkness is completely black in the manga right until he transforms into his final boss form. That actually makes sense! KH2 SPOILERS He's a heartless, after all! SPOILERS END I was already wondering how he got such dark skin in the game, considering Xehanort did have a tan but not that much, and Terra and Riku whose bodies he snatched aren't all that dark either. So I guess it's just 'he's dark because heartless tend to be dark, but we opted not to make him actually completely black in the game because eh, yeaaah awkward'? (still unfortunate implications since he's the Big Bad though) It does look a little strange considering you can't make out his nose in front view, or his mouth when he keeps it closed. (Which isn't often because DARKNESS DARKNESS KINGDOM HEARRRTS DARKNESS.) Aaaand it seems he gets his game skin tone in the Chain of Memories manga. Ah, well.
- 100 Acre Wood got its own chapter, but it's okay because they combined all the mini games and didn't even bother to include Rabbit, Eeyore or Roo (boo). Also it's super short. And somewhat cute. This is coming from someone who's not exactly a big Pooh fan.
- And then BAM Final Mix special chapter with Unknown who could it beeeee (oh man I still need to do this fight help) and three pages to cover the deep dive! Yesss thank you. (hide spoiler)]["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
This is one BIG volume, as it wraps up the entire Chain of Memories manga (previously released in two separate volumes, if memory serves). Unlike the...moreThis is one BIG volume, as it wraps up the entire Chain of Memories manga (previously released in two separate volumes, if memory serves). Unlike the Final Mix manga, the pages aren't mirrored for this volume, so you read it right to left.
Again, the art is super adorable (Sora somehow got more adorable which I didn't think was possible), Naminé is the most adorable little thing, and the manga has some fun additions. (less)
Not going to lie, my main motivation to get the manga was the art. I just really love the toi8 designs (and some of the designs leaked into the novel...moreNot going to lie, my main motivation to get the manga was the art. I just really love the toi8 designs (and some of the designs leaked into the novel covers as well later on, so I suspect that's not just me. Seriously, Nezumi (oh, sorry, Rat) with novel-canonical short hair is hard to picture at this point). I won't really go into depth about the story here, since I'm currently also re-reading the novels and I fully plan on catching up with those before the manga does. My final review of the entire series will be at the final volume of each adaptation respectively, I suspect. (It helps my case that the first volume of the manga only covers about the first half of the first novel, so I can read pretty slowly.)
I was a bit weary of the translation at first, as I know nothing about Kodansha's translations other than snippets from the new release of Sailor Moon, which was... well, less than stellar. However, No. 6 is good, nothing that pulled me out of the story and though my brain automatically replaces every instance of Rat with Nezumi, that has more to do with me being used to read his name as Nezumi than anything else.
The story is just getting started in the first volume, and I'm definitely planning on getting the rest of the manga in English as well now, considering the translation quality for this volume.
(On a side note, it's good to see Shion can't shut up about how pretty Rat's grey eyes are in the manga, too. That's how we know you, Shion. About as subtle as the house of Dorothy Gale.)(less)
I don't care, I just love these books even if I'm not in the target audience anymore. And I was super happy to have a Griezelklas story (by Tais Teng)...moreI don't care, I just love these books even if I'm not in the target audience anymore. And I was super happy to have a Griezelklas story (by Tais Teng) in this one! I've read most of the 'Griezellige' series when I was younger, and I happen to own two of them that don't include Griezelklas stories (most of the others do, haha). Yay for second hand bookshops, I hope I'll eventually find the rest as well.(less)