Nana Vol. 1

Warning!!!! Reading this blog will lead to some spoilers!!! So beware if you wish to continue!

nana1Sumary: Nana Komatsu is a young woman who’s endured an unending string of boyfriend problems. Moving to Tokyo, she’s hoping to take control of her life and put all those messy misadventures behind her.  Nana Osaki, on the other hand, is cool, confident and focused. She’s got a dream and won’t give up until she becomes Japan’s NO. 1 rock ‘n’ roll superstar. This is the story of two 20-year-old women who share the same name. Even though they come from completely different backgrounds, they somehow meet and become best friends. The world of Nana is a world exploding with sex, music, fashion, gossip and all-night parties.

Review: I had a lot of memories involving this manga. I remember back in the day when Shojobeat just started out, and Nana was one of their starter series. I got to admit, from that first chapter, in that very first issue of Shojobeat, I was hooked. But it took me another four or five years to pick it up. Seriously, I have no idea why it took me so long to pick up! I mean, I watched the anime, obsessively, watched both movies (even though they don’t really compare to the manga/anime), but it took me to so long to go out and buy the volumes. So after a shopping craze, at a recent convention, I end up buying the first eleven volumes.

The first volume, is actually the prologue to the story. It explains the backstory of both Nanas. We learn that Nana Komatsu, later known as Hachi, has a long string of crushes/past boyfriends. All of which ended up with Nana on the losing end. Nana Osaki, on the other hand, had a tragic childhood, but grew up to be the lead singer of a punk/rock band. She falls in love with the bass player, Ren, but unfortunely, Ren moves to Tokyo to become the bassist of an upcoming band, Trapnest.

I actually like Hachi, even though she’s quite an airhead, there’s one good thing about her, she faithful, and very commited when it comes to love. Unfortunely, she’s very gullible, when it comes to love, and often makes mistakes. But because of that, Nana, is a perfect match for her. Where Hachi falls short, Nana, makes up for it.

I spent two days reading the first seven volumes of this manga because I simply couldn’t put it down. This series is known for its protrayal of realism. That’s probably the reason I like this series so much. I’ve always been the type to read manga that are drama based.

Conclusion: Definitely one of my favourite series right now. I actually like a lot of Yazawa-sensei’s works. I remember watching the Paradise kiss anime in an all night marathon. Recently, I’ve also started reading Neighbourhood Story, which is another one of Yazawa-sensei’s manga series. Unfortunately though, it’s not license in North America though, so it’s a shame.

Overall Grade: A


Hitman: Reborn! Vol. 1

Warning!!!! Reading this blog will lead to some spoilers!!! So beware if you wish to continue!

Hitman Reborn vol. 1Summary: Junior high student Tsuna is a failure at school, sports, and social life. He needs a mafia hit man tutor like he needs a hole in the head… and he’s about to get both! When Reborn, a fedora-wearing, gun-toting toddler, arrives and says he’s come to groom Tsuna for future as boss of an Italian organized crime family. Tsuna is more than a little skeptical. But Reborn may have the “magic bullet” necessary to turn Tsuna’s life around!

Review: For the longest time, I always wanted to picked up this series. But for all the wrong reasons of course. I can’t deny that I have an urge to hug all fedora-wearing, gun-toting babies. Not to mention, babies dress as cows that shoot bazookas, this manga pretty darn awesome. I practically laughed out loud at every other page (on the bus, in fact, so I know people probably think I’m crazy. lol.)

The story starts off with the introduction of our main hero, Tsuna. He’s really not a hero, he rather a down on his luck type of guy. He’s no good at education, sports, and definitely not at picking up girls. In comes, Reborn, a live-in tutor that Tsuna’s mom hires for him. But there’s a twist, Reborn is actually a baby! Not only that, he’s also the number one assassin for the Vongola family. It turns out that Reborn was hired to train Tsuna into a 10th generation mafia boss, much to Tsuna’s dismay. 

Another quirky addition to this story, is that Reborn uses bullets called” deathperation” which depending on where it’s shot at, allows the individual to display amazing abilities. In this volume, Tsuna gets hit in the head, which turns him to a desperate, superhuman version of himself. The funny thing about it is that every time a bullet is shot, Tsuna gets half naked. This caused him to be seen as a pervert. lol.

A bunch of colourful characters are introduced this volume, such as Gokudera, who’s a dynamite expert, and personally one of my favourites, Lambo who use the 1o year bazooka to switch places with his older self. 

Conclusion: I love this manga! the story is cute, funny and there’s definitely a lot of action involved. I practically laugh out loud at Reborn’s and Lambo’s relationship with each other, because Reborn doesn’t associate himself with small-time assassins. Which means, Lambo is 95% ignored at all times. lol. I have up to volume 8 of this series, so expect more reviews coming soon!

Overall Grade: A

B.O.D.Y. vol. 2

Warning!!!! Reading this blog will lead to some spoilers!!! So beware if you wish to continue!

BODY2Summary: Everyone thinks 16-year-0ld Ryoko has weird taste in guys because she can’t stop drooling over Ryunosuke, the strong silent type who sits next to her in class. When she discovers he works for a host club — where women actually pay men to date them — will she finally wise up? Only one thing’s for sure in B.O.D.Y. — you can’t put a price on love!

Review: In this volume, we see some relationship development. Ryoko and Ryunosuke are finally going out, but Ryoko is always worrying about the girls that see him during work. To reassure their relationship, Ryunosuke tells her he’s quiting his job. Much to their surprise, his boss was never around for him to quit. Ryoko then decides to help out.

She meets a surprisingly young boss, and he quickly tells her that he’s never going to let Ryunosuke go because he makes so much money for the business. He then challenged her, if you make the same amount of money that he does during a month, he will let Ryunosuke go. I don’t know if Ryoko is dumb or what, because she agreed to the challenge. 

Ryoko is then thrown into the world of hosting. Transformed into a “Night Girl” (I don’t know what to call them. lol) she catches the attention of a rich man who’s a regular at the club. He then pays for her to spend the night with him. Ryoko refused and caused a scene. She leaves the car, and started crying. To the dismay of the client, the boss cancels the arrangements and follows Ryoko into the streets. He then comforts her, and tells her not to cry. Out of nowhere, Ryunosuke appears, and demands to know what’s going on. 

Okay, I saw that last scene happening. I suspected from the beginning of this volume, that the boss will become the third wheel in their relationship, and that a love triangle will definitely form. I know I’m jumping guns but, seriously, this wouldn’t be a shoujo manga, if there was no love tension happening. At first, I thought the boss might have been the bad guy, but as the volume approaches the end, he’s actually a pretty nice guy. He didn’t force Ryoko to sleep with that customer, and I respect him for that.

Conclusion: B.O.D.Y. is becoming a better read. Even though the story is filled with a lot of cliches, I still find myself being pulled into this story. I was very happy with some development between the two main characters. The Boss, who was introduced in this volume, seems to be a great rival for Ryunosuke. I have the next volume in my to read pile, so I’m definitely looking forward to the next volume.

Overall Grade: C+