Manga-ka: Natsumi Mukai
Rating: Teen (13+)
Released: June 2008
Synopsis: “The search for Husky continues, as the children learn that Husky has been taken to Stella and sold to a low-ranking noble. Cooro and Nana come to the rescue, staging a daring rescue mission to get Husky back. But the danger is far from over, as Husky reveals that his mother is actually one of the queens of Sailand. With armed palace guards everywhere, a family reunion seems impossible…”
The flashback of Senri’s past continues in this eighth volume of +Anima. When things return to the present, the search for the kidnapped Husky resumes, leading Cooro and Nana to the country’s capital city. When they arrive they discover that Husky has always been sold to a rich upperclassmen so they make a plan to bust him out.
It was an interesting though bittersweet experience reading the rest about Senri’s past. Atop past revelations about him, the truth behind Husky’s past, which is slowly revealed throughout this volume, is even more shocking. For such cute and innocent characters, all these poor main characters have some pretty depressing back-stories!
This volume is a fine balance between action, character drama and plot. While daring rescues and break-ins occur, readers are given lots of memory flashes and new characters to digest as well. The group must find their way into a guarded castle to find Husky’s mother, meeting more than one person from his past and literally running into more than a few problems. As if that wasn’t enough, events near the end of the book reveal a few surprises of other existing characters and promise lots of exciting possibilities for the next book, not to mention the next volume synopsis.
Not much I can say about the art that I haven’t already said. It’s easily one of the most solid, consistent and downright adorable art styles I’ve ever read in a manga. No qualms with how Tokyopop’s treated this book as a whole, in fact it continues to be one of my favourite Tokyopop releases in terms of handling of the release. Altogether this book makes for a great visual package.
Come the end, while volume eight gave some answers previous volumes left us waiting for, it replaced them with a lot of new questions. With the plot taking an even more dramatic turn and some more rough waters ahead, +Anima continues to be a series that wonderfully mixes together a great story with really charming artwork for a fun and action packed reading experience.