KATE: I only have eyes for one book this week: the long-awaited third volume of Summit of the Gods. This manliest of manga focuses on two Japanese climbers’ efforts to find out what happened to doomed explorer George Mallory, who disappeared during a 1924 attempt to reach the top of Mt. Everest. As one might expect of a series illustrated by Jiro Taniguchi, the artwork is superb; if you’ve ever wondered what it might be like to navigate a glacier or dangle from a rope above a yawning chasm, Taniguchi’s drawings will transport you to the Himalayas with the same vertigo-inducing accuracy as an IMAX film.
MICHELLE: I, too, am happy to see volume three of Summit of the Gods appear at long last, but I’ll throw a bit of love toward Alice in the Country of Clover: Chehsire Cat Waltz. Okay, true, the Bloody Twins Clover installment was nowhere near as good as the original Country of Hearts series, including as it did a variety of “what-if” scenarios pairing Alice up with various guys from the video game, but it seems as if Cheshire Cat focuses on her relationship with one guy. Maybe I’m wrong and it’ll disappoint again, but you can be sure I’ll be checking it out.
SEAN: Yeah, I’ll go with Cheshire Cat Waltz as well. It’s still more ‘romance’ oriented than the first series, but does at least make the effort to show that Alice is in a strange land filled with dangerous psychopaths who change moods at the drop of a hat. I hope they go a bit further into her reasons for being there – briefly hinted in the first manga’s ending – but in the meantime, I am content to see her wandering around with the hot guys as long as it keeps up the frisson of discomfort that makes it intriguing.
BRIGID: Summit of the Gods sounds pretty tasty, but it’s 95 degrees and I’m in the last stages of San Diego prep frenzy, so I need something light and amusing. I thought the first volume of Animal Land was kind of strange but interesting in an oh-Japan kind of a way, so I’ll swing for volume 5 this week. Since it springs from the fevered brain of the creator of Zatch Bell, I know I won’t have to take it too seriously, and that’s good enough for me.
MJ: Aside from Summit of the Gods, this week is pretty light for me, so as I’m weighing in last, I’ll to head over to NETCOMICS and recommend their Totally BL bundle, available through the end of the month. While NETCOMICS’ limited-time rental model is looking less and less attractive these days, next to other publishers’ iPad apps and other ownership-based digital venues like JManga (even eManga offers a “Keep” option for their titles), there are a number of Korean titles from NETCOMICS that I must continue to recommend, especially for BL fans. One of these is Hajin Yoo’s Totally Captivated, included in the NETCOMICS bundle along with the super-addictive Let Dai. If you’ve never given Korean BL a chance, this is the time to do so.
Readers, what looks good to you this week?