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Pick of the Week: Old & New

There’s a small but substantial haul coming in to Midtown Comics this week. See what Kate, Melinda, Sean, & Michelle are planning to pick up!

KATE: This week’s shipping list is short, but includes one of my favorite new series of 2011: The Drops of God. Drops is, in essence, shonen manga for the over-21 crowd. The plot revolves around a brash, arrogant young beer executive who inherits a rare wine collection from his father, a leading expert on viniculture. The catch? Shizuku can’t claim his inheritance until he correctly identifies and describes thirteen legendary wines that are mentioned in his father’s will. Helping him is a sommelier-in-training, Miyabi, and an assortment of oddball oenophiles, each with a strong opinion about how and when to drink wine. The series is pure edu-tainment, striking the perfect balance between Dynasty-style intrigue and Wine 101 lessons; even more experienced wine tasters will learn something from the characters’ ecstatic conversations about terroir and vintage.

MICHELLE: Yeah, though this list may be short there are definitely some goodies on there. I’m going to cast my vote for volume 27 of Fullmetal Alchemist despite the fact that I, as of this very moment, have not read beyond volume two in this reportedly epic series. The reason for my enthusiasm is that Melinda and I are planning to devote our final Off the Shelf column of the year to FMA, which means I am going to be eating, sleeping, and breathing the series for the next two weeks. Stay tuned, and don’t miss this long-awaited finale!

SEAN: Christmastime brings the fifth volume of my favorite Ikki license, Dorohedoro. There has been some talk of weak plotting, which may or may not be true, but I don’t really care if it is: this is a series that is less a manga than a WORLD, one you want to immerse yourself in despite the inherent dangers. And Caiman journeying to the Sorceror’s World promises to try to shake things up a bit. Though I hope he’s not separated from Nikaido too long – the banter and friendship between the two, as well as between Shin and Noi, is another highlight. Recommended for those who want an ‘alternative’ manga that makes you want to walk around in its setting, even if you’d die almost immediately.

MELINDA: It’s unusual for a slow week to present me with such a difficult decision, but I’ll admit I’m squirming over the prospect of having to choose. I think everybody here knows how much I love Fullmetal Alchemist, and it kind of kills me not to choose it. But since Michelle has already taken care of that, I probably should lend my support to the penultimate volume of xxxHolic, out this week from Del Rey. I know some readers have given up this series, but I am emphatically not one of those readers, and I’m very anxious to see where things go now that it’s so close to the end. So, you know I’ll be out there grabbing up the final volume of Fullmetal Alchemist, but I won’t be missing out on xxxHolic!

Readers, what looks good to you this week?

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  1. @Michelle you wont be disapointed with the ending to FMA itdoes have the rather standerd “the journy continues” Shonen ending but you don’t feel cheated becuese everything gets a sense of closure and if your’e reading through the whole sereis the first 22 volumes are esstnially build up for volumes 23-27 and it works amazeinglly.

  2. I wonder what it would feel like to read FMA for the first time, from the beginning, all the way to the end. I’m kind of jealous that you get to do that. At the same time I can’t help wondering if too much of a good thing is just that, too much.

    FMA was my first great manga love and is still my greatest favourite. Looking forward to your discussion!

  3. FMA is very high on my list of ‘manga I should give another chance’. If I didn’t already have so much on my reading plate, I’d read it right now that there is so much excitement about the final volume, even though I have actually been able to read the whole series for a while (I read most comics in Chinese these days).

    Maybe it’s just as well that I have to put off FMA for at least 3 months. That way, when I do marathon it and comment about it, it will Melinda an excuse to talk about FMA some more when everybody else has been FMA’d-out.

    Typo nanny quotes “this is a series that is less and manga than a WORLD.”


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