SEAN: Given that there’s about 40 gazillion titles coming out this Wednesday at Midtown Comics, narrowing down a pick of the week is hard. I am therefore going to do what I usually do in these cases, which is assume my colleagues will pick the more ‘upscale’ titles and go for my own personal biases. Jiu Jiu is Viz’s latest Shojo Beat series, and it’s from Hana to Yume (and its spinoff), a magazine I adore. It combines shoujo romance with fantasy, as most of the currently licensed crop do (hey, you go with what sells), and features a heroine who is cool and can kick ass when required. Who could ask for anything more?
MICHELLE: Actually, even though I know I should pick the third volume of Wandering Son because it’s bound to be awesome, my heart is drawn unerringly—over other greats like One Piece and Ooku—to the 28th volume of Skip Beat!. I think it says a lot about the series that it inspires such loyalty and genuine expectation so long into its run. Also, I have successfully gotten a coworker addicted. Muahaha!
MELINDA: I think we can all agree that Wandering Son is a must-buy. But since there will be much more of it to come, I’ll give my vote this week to a single volume release—the manga adaptation of Makoto Shinkai’s 5 Centimeters Per Second. I’m a fairly devoted fan of Shinkai’s work and vision, and as this adaptation is based on my very favorite of his films, it’s not a release I’m willing to miss. There are images from this melancholy film that are among my favorites in any medium—moments I carry with me day-to-day, even now. And while I expect I’ll find the manga’s strengths to be different than the film’s, it’s hard for me to imagine Vertical licensing this if it had no strengths at all. So, despite my usual skepticism over adaptations of this kind, I approach this manga optimistically.
BRIGID: Wow, so many good books to choose from! I’m loving Drops of God, so I’ll want vol. 4 of that, and I’ll be going for 5 cm too. But in the dog days of summer, I go for the simple pleasures, so my first choice this week will be vol. 1 of the Kitchen Princess omnibus. I’m ready for some sweet, sweet shoujo, and Kitchen Princess delivers, treading very familiar ground with the story of a cheerful orphan at an elite boarding school who solves everyone’s problems by cooking for them. It’s charming, funny, and broken up into short story arcs so I can pick it up and put it down whenever I like. Yeah, I’ve read it before, but summer is a good time for reruns, so bring it on!
Readers, what looks good to you this week?