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Posts Tagged Dawn of the Arcana

Swag Bag: Girls, Guys and Thermae Romae

Swag Bag

It’s a new Swag Bag post! And as the last was a month ago, we have some catching up to do.

Seven Seas’ omnibus edition of Kisses, Sighs, and Cherry Blossom Pink was one of my favourite purchases as of late. Yuri is uncommon enough, but after this release and Girlfriends, I won’t ever pass up an opportunity for more of Milk Morniaga’s work. I found this book tricky to get through. I related to these characters more than most in manga, so the book took considerable more emotional toll on me than I’m accustomed. It only speaks to their quality when in the right hands, however, and while it means I’ll likely never be able to write a full review for them, I have all the hopes in the world they continue to do well so we can get more.

Yen Press continues to make clever power plays for room on my bookshelves with a new set of shiny re-editions. This time it’s Kingdom Hearts Final Mix (Vol. 01-02) and Chain of Memories. Both are adaptations of the video games of the same name, products near and dear to my fangirl heart, and titles that Tokyopop originally published. While I already own the Tokyopop books, Yen Press’s new collected editions look and read great, plus have that new book smell. How could anyone resist? For more thoughts, you can read my review of Kingdom Hearts Final Mix.

A Devil and Her Love Song (Vol. 09) began my Viz Media purchases and was an enjoyable romp of beach time fun and character development. I reviewed another recent shoujo purchase, Dawn of the Arcana (Vol. 10), last weekend. Always the Queen of the crop, Sailor Moon (Vol. 11) was quick to enter the swag bag and carries us into the final, and possibly most emotionally intense, arc of the series.

Completing it’s final arc is Saturn Apartments (Vol. 07), which really surprised me with how dark it got for a while. I honestly didn’t know how it was going to turn out, which is always the best way to read something. All surprises! Much less of a surprise were Attack on Titan (Vol.01) and No. 6 (Vol. 01) from Kodansha Comics, since I’ve already seen the anime versions. But I love them both, Attack on Titan in particular, so I had to buy the manga of each.

Thermae Romae (Vol. 02)It was super shonen time with the newest volume of Toriko (Vol. 16). It’s continuing to be a little disorienting following the series both in the collected form and as new chapters come out via Shonen Jump. The two haven’t overlapped yet, but it is neat seeing what comes, what’s been and wondering what could possibly fill the gap. Less suspenseful is Pokemon Black & White (Vol. 10) but it’s always cute and fun.

Speaking of cute and fun, though in entirely different ways, I was thrilled to finally pick up a copy of Thermae Romae (Vol. 02). This series is amazing, both in the surprise of something with this plot simply existing, but also in how well it’s executed. This series continues to be hilarious and educational, not to mention brilliantly packaged by Yen Press. If you haven’t already, make sure you buy these gems while you can!

And I finished this month’s purchases off with some boys’ love – Bonds of Dreams, Bonds of Love (Vol. 04) and Blue Morning (Vol. 01). Bonds of Dreams, Bonds of Love is now over and went out the same way in came in – funny and full of enjoyably horny hijinks. Blue Morning starts a brand new series and one that’s pretty much the polar opposite in tone. I found Blue Morning a bit dull as it’s dark mood almost suffocated it, but now with the characters set-up, I’m looking forward to seeing more plot progress in volume two.

That does it for this week’s Swag Bag. As always, feel more than free to share what purchases you’ve made recently and if you’d recommend them!


Otaku USA: On The Shelf – June 12, 2013

Otaku USA: On The Shelf - June 13, 2013

Another week, another list of new manga – another week of lots of manga. Huzzah! This week’s On The Shelf on Otaku USA has been posted, but it will also be my last On The Shelf article for Otaku USA. It’s hard to believe I’d been doing it nearly two years!

For those still looking for the weekly list,  new books will continue to be posted every week here on Kuriousity as normal. On The Shelf mini lives on!

A Devil and Her Love Song (Vol.09) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Arata: The Legend (Vol.14) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Attack on Titan (Vol.05) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Bleach (Vol.57) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Dawn of the Arcana (Vol.10) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Demon Love Spell (Vol.03) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Haganai: I Don’t Have Many Friends (Vol.03) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
His Favorite (Vol.04) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Kisses, Sighs, and Cherry Blossoms Pink [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Knights of Sidonia (Vol.03) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Loveless (Vol.11) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
No.6 (Vol.01) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Nura: Rise of the Yokai Clan (Vol.15) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
One Piece (Vol.67) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
One Piece Omnibus (Vol.06) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Pokémon Adventures Platinum (Vol.08) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Rurouni Kenshin: Restoration (Vol.01) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Sakura Hime: The Legend of Princess Sakura (Vol.10) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Sankarea: Undying Love (Vol.01) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Skip Beat! (Vol.31) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Slam Dunk (Vol.28) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Sleeping Moon (Vol.01) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Toriko (Vol.16) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Trigun Maximum Omnibus (Vol.03) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal (Vol.03) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]


Review: Dawn of the Arcana (Vol. 10)

Dawn of the Arcana (Vol. 10)

Manga-ka: Rei Toma
Publisher: Viz Media
Rating: Teen (13+)
Release Date: June 2013

Synopsis: “Princess Nakaba of Senan and Prince Caesar of Belquat married each other for the sake of peace between their warring countries, yet the two find themselves drawn to each other even as political forces threaten to tear their world apart. In Lithuanel, Nakaba desperately searches for a way to save both her friend Akhil and his brother Azhal. Unfortunately, her visions show that only one of them will live. Meanwhile, Caesar’s return to Belquat may mean the end of his relationship with Nakaba…”

I’ve made no secret about my frustrations with this series every time I write about it, and yet I keep on buying each and every volume as it comes out. Volume one had moments that impressed me, but they were buried under a stiff delivery and disappointing character devolution. While time has helped the pacing issues, the change of Nakaba’s character from strong, independent woman to a cowering dependent remained on-going. Throw in the love triangle created when she falls for her abuser, and leaves her loyal best friend on the sidelines, and you have a mixed bag of yuck.

But wait, you may be wondering, ‘why is this reviewer still reading the series then?’. The answer is volumes like this. (Warning: Review will contain spoilers)

Read more…


Swag Bag: Biz With Viz, Passion and Perils

Swag Bag: Biz With Viz, Passion and Perils

It’s been March since the last Swag Bag! Well that won’t do, now will it? While my post about TCAF outlined a bunch of my most recently purchased comics, there’s been lots of manga bought between the last Swag Bag and that post. Because I’m too lazy to go through my bookshelves to find each and every one, let’s take a look at some notables!

Always the must have buy is Sailor Moon (Vol. 10) which I’m loving more and more every volume. This point in the story was broadcast only briefly on television, and these manga volumes were more difficult to find, so while I’m familiar with the story, it all feels more fresh and new and full of surprises since I have less familiarity with it. Eternal Sailor Senshi!

Then it’s my why-do-I-keep-buying-this-series with Dawn of the Arcana (Vol. 09). Loki keeps getting the short end of the stick, and I find the relationship between Nakaba and Cesare so lacking in chemistry. I think it must be some tiny sliver of hope Loki gets a happy ending that keeps me reading. I hope I’m rewarded for my diligence…

Much more satisfying were new volumes of Bleach (Vol.56), Toriko (Vol.15) and A Devil and Her Love Song (Vol.08). Toriko is still one of my favourite manga series running now, though I’m a little sad to see it dissolve to chapter upon chapter of one on one fight scenes in the current issues of Shonen Jump. On the flip side  the current chapters of Bleach have been really great – actually super relevant and interesting flashbacks!

And last up from Viz Media recently was Pokemon Adventures (Vol.16), which continues the adventures of these two new Pokemon trainers who are really, really entertaining. Flip those gender roles! The male trainer is obsessed with making Pokemon beautiful, while the female trainer is a wild girl (like Tarzan wild) who wants her Pokemon to be the strongest.

In other worlds of young people doing interesting things – I picked up Arisa (Vol.10) where we finally know who the King is. There are still some motivations left to be explored, but I’m glad the one secret is finally out in the open. It’s more classic mysteries on-going in Young Miss Holmes (Vol.03-04) where the adorable lead makes it a joy to read, even when plot itself gets a little bogged down in details.

Mobile Suit Gundam the Origin: Activation (Vol. 01)And the biggest buys recently were Mobile Suit Gundam the Origin: Activation (Vol. 01) when it came out back in April, and The Passion of Gengoroh Tagame this past weekend. Both had amazing production values – really nice work done on the design and packaging. I wasn’t sure how I’d like the Gundam manga but actually really, really liked it. As the original Gundam story, it felt simple and streamlined while containing everything that makes the franchise so popular. Very easy to read, and I look forward to more. Passion was also great, but in a very different way. Gengoroh Tagame’s work is always shocking, and I was really curious to see which of his works would be in this book. Picture Box did not hold back!

And lastly during my visit to Toronto, I picked up some out of print books from The Beguiling. Hollow Fields (Vol.01), First Love (Vol.01) and In These Words (Vol.01). Sadly I doubt I’ll ever see second volumes of First Love and In These Words, which is sad because they were both great reads and I’ve been looking for them a while. I also bought two new bara anthologies which star many of the artists we’ll see in Picture Box’s Massive anthology next Spring.

That does it for this week’s Swag Bag. As always, feel more than free to share what purchases you’ve made recently and if you’d recommend them!


Otaku USA: On The Shelf – April 3, 2013

Otaku USA: On The Shelf - April 3, 2013

Incoming tidal wave of awesome manga! As the first shipping day of the month, this week’s title list does not disappoint. Viz Media takes home the prize for most titles, but my top picks go to Kodansha Comics and Vertical for their releases of Sailor Moon (Vol. 10) and Mobile Suit Gundam the Origin (Vol.01).

You can read all about this week’s new releases via my On The Shelf article for Otaku USA.

A Certain Scientific Railgun (Vol.07) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Attack on Titan (Vol.04) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Barrage (Vol.02) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Omnibus (Vol.01) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Bleach (Vol.56) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Blue Exorcist (Vol.09) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Dawn of the Arcana (Vol.09) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Devil & Her Love Song (Vol.08) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Fairy Tail (Vol.24) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
GTO: 14 Days in Shonan (Vol.08) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Hana Kimi 3-in-1 (Vol.04) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Jiu Jiu (Vol.04) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Kimi ni Todoke (Vol.16) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Library Wars: Love & War (Vol.09) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Love Hina Omnibus (Vol.05) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Mobile Suit Gundam Origin: Activation (Vol.01) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
My Boyfriend is a Vampire (Vol.04) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Nura Rise of the Yokai Clan (Vol.14) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Sailor Moon (Vol.10) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Slam Dunk (Vol.27) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Story of Saiunkoku (Vol.09) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
The Limit (Vol.04) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Toriko (Vol.15) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Yu-Gi-Oh 5DS (Vol.04) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US]


Otaku USA: On The Shelf – February 6, 2013

Otaku USA: On The Shelf - February 6, 2013

So, last week? Not much manga. This week? Wooooow on the manga! So, so much! Where do we start? Where do we begin? How am I possibly going to carry home all the books I hope to buy tomorrow!? Hard to complain about an issue like that though I suppose.

With new volumes of Bleach, GTO: 14 Days in Shonan, Negima!, Pokemon, Sailor Moon and many more, you can check out my write-up for this week’s On The Shelf at Otaku USA.

Ai Ore (Vol.08) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Alice in the Country of Joker: Circus & Liars Game (Vol.01) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Bleach 3-in-1 (Vol.04) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Bleach (Vol.55) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Dawn of the Arcana (Vol.08) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Devil & Her Love Song (Vol.07) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Fairy Tail (Vol.23) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Genshiken Omnibus (Vol.03) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
GTO: 14 Days in Shonan (Vol.07) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Haganai: I Have No Friends (Vol.02) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Kamisama Kiss (Vol.12) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Miles Edgeworth: Ace Attorney (Vol.04) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Naruto 3-in-1 (Vol.04) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Naruto (Vol.60) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Negima! (Vol.37) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Nura Rise of the Yokai Clan (Vol.13) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
One Piece 3-in-1 (Vol.05) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Pokemon Adventures Platinum (Vol.07) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Sailor Moon (Vol.09) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Sengoku Basara Samurai Legends (Vol.02) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Skip Beat (Vol.30) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Slam Dunk (Vol.26) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Stepping on Roses (Vol.09) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Tegami Bachi (Vol.12) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Tenjo Tenge (Vol.11) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Toriko (Vol.14) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]


Otaku USA: On The Shelf – December 5, 2012

Otaku USA: On The Shelf - December 5, 2012

Feeling extra lazy today, so MANGA! Yay! Check out the list of new books released this week at my On the Shelf article for Otaku USA. Handy link-ready list below too!

Arata the Legend (Vol. 12) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Bakuman (Vol. 17) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Black Bird (Vol. 15) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Bleach (Vol. 52) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Bleach (Vol. 53) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
D. Gray Man (Vol. 23) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Dawn of the Arcana (Vol. 07) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Demon Love Spell (Vol. 01) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Devil & Her Love Song (Vol. 06) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
The Earl and the Fairy (Vol. 04) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Natsume’s Book of Friends (Vol. 13) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
NGE: Shinji Ikari Raising Project (Vol. 12) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Nura Rise of the Yokai Clan (Vol. 12) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Sakura Hime: Legend of Princess Sakura (Vol. 09) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Slam Dunk (Vol. 25) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Toriko (Vol. 13) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Yu-Gi-Oh Zexal (Vol. 02) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]


Otaku USA: On The Shelf – October 10, 2012

Otaku USA: On The Shelf - October 10, 2012

So many good books out this week! More Bleach, Devil & Her Love Song, Toriko, Paradise Kiss, Arisa – the list goes on. Weirdly I was already able to buy a lot of these last week, but that’s Diamond Comics for you isn’t it?

You can read more of my specific thoughts and ponderings over at this week’s Otaku USA’s On The Shelf and view the hopefully handy list-only version below:

Arisa (Vol.09) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Bakuman. (Vol.15) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Bleach (Vol.48) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Bleach (Vol.49) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Cage of Eden (Vol.07) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Case Closed (Vol.44) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Dawn of the Arcana (Vol.06) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Devil & Her Love Song (Vol.05) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Drops of God (Vol.05) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Fairy Tail (Vol.21) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Ghost in the Shell (Vol.1.5) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
GTO: 14 Days in Shonan (Vol.05) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Jack the Ripper: Hell Blade (Vol.02) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Jiu Jiu (Vol.02) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Kekkaishi (Vol.34) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Loveless 2-in-1 (Vol.01) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Nura: Rise of the Yokai Clan (Vol.11) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Paradise Kiss (Vol.01) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Pokémon Adventures Platinum (Vol.06) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Skip Beat (Vol.29) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Slam Dunk (Vol.24) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Stepping on Roses (Vol.08) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Story of Saiunkoku (Vol.08) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Toriko (Vol.12) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]


PR: Viz Manga Digital Schedule Synchronizes Day-and-Date With Print

VIZ MANGA DIGITAL SCHEDULE SYNCHRONIZES DAY-AND-DATE WITH CURRENT PRINT RELEASES

All Digital Manga Releases To Debut On Tuesdays;
New Volumes Of Current VIZ Manga Series Will Debut Simultaneously In Print And Digitally

Leading North American publisher VIZ Media continues to refine its VIZ Manga digital platform with a newly announced general release schedule that will synchronize future manga titles to coincide with the domestic debut of their print counterparts, closing the gap between print and digital manga formats.

Beginning today, all VIZ Manga releases will debut on Tuesdays. In addition, digital volumes of current releases will debut on the same day as its print debut. This will also include future VIZ Media titles available from the NOOK Store™ for the Barnes & Noble NOOK Color and NOOK Tablet.

The VIZ Manga App is available for free through the iTunes Store and the Google Play Store, and all manga volumes are generally available for purchase and download in the U.S. and Canada within the application for $4.99 (U.S. / CAN) per volume. More than 80 series and 700 volumes are currently available for download. Plus, don’t miss the VIZ Manga End of Summer Sale going on now until August 20, 2012, saving fans up to 20% Off all series available on VIZManga.com and the VIZ Manga app for the iPad, iPhone, iPod touch and now Android phones!

Read more…


Review: Dawn of the Arcana (Vol. 04)

Dawn of the Arcana (Vol. 04)

Manga-ka: Rei Toma
Publisher: Viz Media
Rating: Teen (13+)
Release Date: June 2012

Synopsis: “Princess Nakaba of Senan and Prince Caesar of Belquat only married each other for the sake of peace between their two warring countries, so no one expected there to be love between the unlikely couple. But just as feelings start growing between them, Nakaba’s power, the Arcana of Time, shows her a vision of a young woman’s murder. Has the time come for Nakaba to harness her power to change fate?”

As the characters try to come to terms with what they discovered in volume three, Nakaba has a vision of a young girls’ death on the very swords they discovered. Mere moments later, she meets the girl whose fate she has seen – the younger sister of the King’s advisor. Now the whole group is on the road to stop multiple disasters from occurring and giving us all the chance to escape that stuffy castle for a while. Yay! Meanwhile much to the volume’s benefit, the evolving importance of other characters does wonders to round out a cast originally focused entirely of the love-triangle trio. They all serve the plot well where the Nakaba/Caeser romance continues to fall rather flat.

Read more…


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