SEAN: As always after a week where 30+ titles ship all at once, this 2nd week of the month feels like a bit of a letdown. That said, there are a few interesting items. My pick of the week goes to the 5th volume of Toradora!, Seven Seas’ romantic comedy about a tiny girl with a hot temper and her not-boyfriend, a sensitive guy with the face of a gangster. Generally speaking, ‘tsundere girl who looks 8 years old but is 16 and will beat up the guy she likes’ is a overdone theme in Japanese anime and manga, but Taiga has managed to be less irritating than, say, Louise or Shana, and the cast of characters is also more appealing to me. Especially Minori, Taiga’s best friend, who needs to cross over with Bleach so that she and Orihime can be weird together.
KATE: Them’s some meager offerings! Click over to the graphic novel list, however, and you’ll find a worthy pick of the week: Madeline Rosca’s Clockwork Sky. If Rosca’s name sounds familiar, that’s because she was one of the first people to win the International Manga Award for Hollow Fields, a story set at an academy for mad scientists. Like Hollow Fields, Clockwork Sky has a heavy element of steampunk: the story unfolds in a technologically advanced version of Victorian England, complete with automated factories and robot detectives. The description promises an abundance of plotlines, from class warfare to rogue robots, so I’m optimistic that Clockwork Sky will be a fun read.
MJ: I admit I’m finding this week’s offerings at Midtown less than enticing. Fortunately, there are other places to turn for new manga these days, and by “other” I mean “digital”! Right now, I’m racing over to JManga to pick up the third volume of Setona Mizushiro’s Dousei Ai. As a big fan of Mizushiro’s After School Nightmare I’d long waited for some of her BL work to finally be translated into English, and this series’ first two volumes did not disappoint. If you’re looking for epic, complex BL, Dousei Ai is a must-read. I only wish it was available in print!
MICHELLE: Meager, indeed! According to Amazon, though, the seventh volume of Sailor Moon (my personal pick) is due on Tuesday, so you will likely be able to find it at your local comic store, provided that store isn’t Midtown!
Readers, what looks good to you this week?