Maid War Chronicle Vol. 1

maid-war-chronicle-manga-volume-1-coverWhat’s on the back: When the kingdom of Arbansbool is invaded, the prince escapes with a handful of his closest attendants. But these aren’t just any attendants. They’re all maids whose job is to pour tea, not raise an army and help the prince reclaim his throne. Now chief maid cacao Sardonyx and her five colleagues must take up arms and save a kingdom in this skirt-slashing, tea-spilling epic!

Review: You know when it’s obvious that a book is written for a male audience? When every other page is filled with fan service, and a kid who’s practically a pervert. Even though Maid War Chronicle is a harem manga aimed at guys, I guess I could say it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. The premises of the story is good, but with so many fan service scenes, I’m a bit turned off.

A young prince recruits beautiful/exotic girls to be his maids. The maids are actually named after different sweet liquors such as: Cacao, Vanilla, Mint, etc. They’re a weird bunch I must say. One use to work in a circus, one’s a book worm, and another is an exotic girl from some island. They all have one thing in common though (except fo Cacao), they all kind of worshipped the prince, who’s totally a pervert. I’m not surprised that his kingdom got invaded. It seems to me, that the prince is more into skirt chasing, the governing a kingdom.

Art wise, Ran Sensei’s art is very similar to Ken Akamatsu, who’s the mangaka for Negima and Love Hina. Which is not surprising, since he drew the art for Mao-Chan, which is a collaboration between Akamatsu and Ran. Visually the art is very apealling but there’s nothing really special about it.

Final Thoughts: Regardless of all the fanservice, the story itself isn’t half bad. Towards the end of the volume, I enjoyed the story a little bit more. The manga moved from a fan service direction, to a more of an action/adventure direction. It’s too early to judge if the manga is going to be any good. But from what I see, it might be a little bit better in the next volume. Plus, the thing about me is, that I never ever drop a series. Curse my habits. lol

Overall Grade: C –

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Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle Vol. 20

TSUBASA20Warning!!!! Reading this blog will lead to some spoilers!!! So beware if you wish to continue!

What’s On the Back: The princess has been betrayed and her body sent to Fai’s frozen home world of Seresu. In order to follow Sakura, the wrecked remains of the band of travelers must pay their price to the witch. And once they arrive, Fai will have to confront the one he’s been fleeing — and the horrific truth of his past!

Review:  Before I start things off, I would like to apologize for the lack of recent posts. This Blog is not dead, just I had a lot of things to do recently, including a big operation on my abdominal. But alas, I’m recovering now, and have a lot of time to blog. =)

In this volume, we learn that Sakura body has been split from her body and soul. Her body was sent to Seresu, but her soul was sent to where she wanted to go. The princess foretold the future within her dreams. She saw Fai killing her, and then killing her other two companions. She knew that she couldn’t stop Fai from stabbing her because he was controlled by a strong curse. She asked Yuko for two wishes, in return she lost her good luck and also the use of her right leg. Her first was to change the future, and the second was to ensure that her three companions come out of this alive. One of Sakura’s feathers exist in her dreams. So she knew that one day, the other Shaoyran will come looking for it in her dreams.

I don’t know what it is about Clamp, but they sure love tragedy. I kind of figured out that Fai’s past was probably a dark one because of the numerous hints in the past volumes. But I didn’t know it was this dark. He’s just one tragic fellow. But instead of hating him for what he has done, I can’t help but sympathize with the guy. Fai confessed that he has been lying to the group since the very beginning. He knew there was a feather back in Seresu, but also the fact that he was the one who was carrying the first feather they found during their visit to Yuko’s place. He also mentions that there is a reason Yuko stays in another dimension when talking to the group. It was because Yuko’s powers are much stronger than Fai’s. Fai’s first curse is to kill anyone who possess more magical powers than him.

So the group travels to Seresu, where the person who Fai has been running from greets him. We learn of Fai’s dark past including, the fact that he actually took his dead twin brother’s name, and that he was a pawn in Fei Wang’s plan. I’d also read volume 22, so I know a little more about Fai’s past, but I’m going to save it for the next post.

Final Thoughts: This actually a pretty dark addition to the series. I kind of figure it was going down this path, because it was written by Clamp, queen of all things tragic. lol. But I actually kind of  like the direction the story is going towards. The story seems a little bit more deep now.

Overall Grade: A

 

Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle Vol. 19

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

Tsubasa vol. 19Summary: The Mafia-run world of Infinity would be a dangerous place even without the death-defying “chess” tournament that Princess Sakura and her companions have entered. But Sakura has decided to risk everything, even her friends’ lives — for the contest’s secret prize.

Review: I’m a little bit tired of the way Sakura is acting. She’s being quite selfish right now. She doesn’t tell her friends the reason why they’re in this competition, so that they won’t hold her back when the time comes for her to use the secret prize. The way she treats the real Shaoyran is annoying me too. I understand that the Shaoyran she remembers in her new memories is the clone. But her old memories are all of the real Shaoyran, even though he’s blocked off. Couldn’t she be a bit more sympathetic?

This volume kicks off from where it left off in the pervious volume. Sakura and the team, has made it to the last battle. But before that occurred, The Mafia leader, questions Sakura’s motives for being in this competition. Money is one thing, but the thing Sakura really wants is the ability to travel by herself to a different dimension. Sakura’s plans are unknown to her fellow travelers, even though I suspect Fai might know something about it. In the final battle, each team is only allowed to put one player on the board. Shaoyran volunteers, even though Sakura told him the other night to have his own freedom. It turns out that the person or thing he was to battle with was an Automata. In an epic battle, Shaoyran ends up winning by a slim chance. Afterwards, Sakura’s wish to travel alone is granted. But before that happens, a curse that was layed on Fai in the past caused him to go beserk and stabbed the princess. Fortunately, Sakura made it in time to the other dimension, unharmed.

Conclusion: Wow, is this manga as epic as ever? I never seen a manga turned so dark so fast. I still enjoyed this manga quite a bit, even though Sakura kind of pissed me off this whole volume. I wonder what will happen to the team, now that a vital part of their party is gone?

Overall Grade: A

Orange Planet Vol. 1

20080115214543Summary: Like a lot of girls, Rui has boy problems. But most girls would be thrilled to have a problem like hers: There are too many boys in love with her! First there’s Taro, the adorable boy next door. Then there’s Eisuke, a teaching intern who’s just too hot to handle. And finally, Kaoru-the one boy who just may hold the key to Rui’s heart.

Review: The cover for this manga pulled me in. I know it’s wrong to judge a  book by its cover, but I couldn’t help it! Being an avid fan of shoujo, the cover + summary just screamed out to me.

Orange Planet is about a girl named Rui. When she was younger her parents died in an accident. On her birthday she met a boy who told her that her parents are the brightest star in the night sky. Later on, he gives her a bear, and tells her to write to him every time she is sad.

Years later, Rui finds herself falling in love with one of her classmate, Kaoru. But at the same time her neighbour/childhood friend has raging crush on her (it’s so obvious, but she can’t tell). Only to make matters worse, her teaching intern, Eisuke, suddenly crashes at her house. It doesn’t help that he also is a womanizer.

Right now, I’m kind of rooting for Eisuke. I’ve always been the type to like older guys. Even though he is a womanizer, his personality is kind and sincere. Plus, I feel that he’s someone linked to the little boy that Rui met when she was little. Why else would he crash at her house?

 Conclusion: Orange Planet is one of those fluffy shoujos. But there seems to be something about it that makes it special and sets it apart from other shoujos I’ve read in the past. It doesn’t beat Skip Beat, which is my current favourite shoujo, but it’s definitely a great manga to pick up. 

Overall Grade: B

Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle Vol. 18

Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle 18Summary: In the world of Infinity, Princess Sakura has become a Chess Master and the other travelers are her pieces. But the Mafia is running the game, and they don’t care if Sakura’s opponents break the rules or murder Sakura’s companions! Why is Sakura so determined to risk everything?

Review: Before I start my review, I’ll let you guys know that when I say C-Syaoran, I mean Clone Syaoran, and R-Syaoran means Real Syaoran.

This is personally one of my favourite manga. This volume was filled with angst. The last few volumes turned this series suddenly into a drama-packed story. C-Syaoran becomes haywire searching for sakura’s feathers. While Sakura, on the other hand, is fighting an inner battle to find the difference between the two Syaorans. 

C-Syaoran leaves a country in turmoil, after destroying it in order to obtain a feather. Soon after, Sakura and her companions, land in the country which C-Syaoran just destroyed. Mistaken for his other self, R-Syaoran ends up getting beat up by the citizens of that country.  Sakura blocks off the attacks, and begs Mokona to transport them to a new country. Sakura and gang lands in the world of Infinity, which is ran by a mafia. She then becomes a Chess Master, and her companions, chess pieces. Stricken with guilt over the other worlds’ demised, Sakura ask Yuko for help. If she wins the prize money that is offer for this game, Yuko must send the money to the destroyed country in order to compensate for the damage done. Sakura’s will allows the team to win every match. The Mafia leader, sense that Sakura is a strong person, so he wished to test her strength. The next battle involved the other opponents cheating. R-Syaoran realizes that Sakura really wants to win, so he went against odds and ended up winning the match for the team. 

Back at their apartment, Fail receives a telepathic message from Chi, which states, “His Majesty is awake…”

Conclusion: To tell you the truth, I have sympathy for R-Syaoran. He has become a lost soul because Sakura refuses to see him as Syaoran. In the princess memories, all she sees is the Syaoran that traveled with her in search of her feathers. The Syaoran of her past, she does not remember because with the ability to travel through the worlds, Sakura lost the ability to remember the person that she loves the most. To the Syaoran that she is with now seems, like a whole different person, regardless of the fact that they both share the same features, voice, and personality. Because of that, She is very cold towards R-Syaoran. I understand what Sakura is going through, but couldn’t she be a little more nice to R-Syaoran? I mean that guy is doing everything he could in order for Sakura to realize her dream. He protects, and loves her, just like the C-Syaoran. I know that Sakura doesn’t remember him, but why must she be so cold? 

On a side note, What is going to happen to Fai? The person that he was running away from, has finally awoken. I do not know why he was running away, but it seems like there’s something fishy behind it. 

Overall Grade: B+

Ace Attorney Phoenix Wright (Official Casebook Vol. 1)

Summary: A manga based on the hit “Phoenix Wright, Ace Attorney” game. We are introduced to Phoenix Wright, a man who strikes fear into the hearts of evil doers everywhere. We follow Wright, his assistant Maya, his arch enemy Miles Edgeworth and numerous other characters as they investigate twenty intriguing cases.

Review Those of you who have played any of the Phoenix Wright game, will know how awesome and exciting this game really is. Being a lawyer fanatic that I am, when I heard that there was lawyer based game on the nintendo ds, I immediately when out and purchased it. Let me tell you, I was not one bit disappointed about the game at all. But the manga was another story.

Being a big fan of the game, I decided to pick up the manga. At first I was kind of disappointed that instead of having one mangaka authored the book, each story had a different author. Normally I don’t complain about things like this, but I noticed that the quality of each story in the book wasn’t consistent. I was also unhappy about the fact that the manga strays too far away from the game itself. To me, each story had nothing to do with the premises of solving a case, or being in a trial (those were the things that I liked about the game).  To tell you guys the truth, I found this whole volume to be a bit boring. All of the jokes that were meant to be funny, were in fact not. It took me an entire two days to read this manga, due to the fact that  I would fall asleep halfway through.

Conclusion: If you’re expecting for this manga to live up to the game, you will be highly disappointed. Invest your time and money in the game instead.

Overall Grade: D-