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Posts Tagged Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service

Swag Bag: Zombies, Zeal and Melancholy

Swag Bag: Zombies, Zeal and Melancholy

Diamond Comics has been sneaking out some releases early this year, so this week’s swag bag (which is actually last week’s by purchase time) includes a couple Yen Press books that I didn’t expect to be seeing until sometime this week. No complaints from me! It just means more budget for what arrives at Strange Adventures tomorrow.

My first purchase last week though was Dark Horse‘s Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service (Vol. 13), as I missed it when it was released back in mid December. We only get a couple volumes of this series a year, at best, so I’m always excited to get a new one. Most of the volumes are still episodic in nature, but randomly there’s a sudden plot development that I never see coming. This was one of those volumes! I’m still not entirely sure how I feel about this particular reveal, and it really feels like it came out of no where, but I’m eager to see where the story goes with it.

Another episodic series was next in my bag with Natsume’s Book of Friends (Vol. 13). Plot development is far less in-your-face in this series, and any forward progression is done via subtle character development and the occasional new face. The second half of this volume is made up of two flashbacks following the perspective of Natsume’s school friends and how they met him. We rarely see much of those who aren’t affiliated with yokai, so it was fun getting a glimpse of Natsume from someone else’s angle. This series is always so… relaxingly sad?  Soothingly melancholic? It’s a tough feeling to pinpoint, but I’m sure those who read the series understand what I mean.

Black Butler (Vol. 12)The first of my two early Yen Press buys was A Bride’s Story (Vol. 04). This volume is a big tone change from earlier books, and it’s pretty great because of that. It’s not that I haven’t enjoyed each volume of A Bride’s Story, but I love that this volume is a lot more fun than usual. The twin girls on the cover are the book’s focus and it’s entertaining watching them tear around their little village trying to find perfect husbands.

And last up this shopping trip was Black Butler (Vol. 12). I wasn’t feeling all that excited to get this book since recent volumes of the series have felt a bit lackluster  Still pretty, but the story just hasn’t been clicking for me. And now zombies? Eh… And yet, my ambivalence to it was rewarded this time with surprise and awe! This could possibly be my favourite volume of the series to date. The art was top notch, the fan-service abundant but classy and all the beautiful Victorian clothing was looking especially attractive when worn by people kicking some series zombie butt. Now I’m really looking forward to the next volume.

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 – November 28, 2012

Otaku USA: On The Shelf - November 28, 2012

Busy, busy these days but never too busy for new comics. November was a huge month for manga releases, though this past week’s list of titles – which mark the last of the month – was considerably smaller. Our wallets appreciate the break though, right? Not that it means there aren’t still some must-haves, including Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service (Vol.13) and the Sailor Moon (Vol. 01-06) boxset. Off to the store!

The title details are over at their usual place, at a slightly later than usual time (my bad!), in  my On The Shelf article for Otaku USA.

Deltora Quest (Vol.09) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Fairy Tail (Vol.22) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
GTO: 14 Days in Shonan (Vol.06) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Is This A Zombie? (Vol.03) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service (Vol.13) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Limit (Vol.02) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Sailor Moon Boxset #1 (Vol.01-06) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]

Swag Bag: Girls and Guys, Guardians and Ghouls

Swag Bag

It is raining so hard outside! While this has left me soaked during my early morning treck home, it at least provides the perfect opportunity to curl up in a warm, dry set of blankets with a good book. My past two weekly trips to the comic store has alloted me plenty to choose from (but where to begin!?):

I stocked up on shoujo with the second volume of A Devil and Her Love Song (which I loved as much as the first) and volume one of The Earl & The Fairy (which really could’ve used more fairies). Both were from Viz Media.

From Kodansha Comics, Sailor Moon (Vol.05) was a big given. This particular volume is extra hefty with pages and a lot happens, finishing up the entire Dark Moon arc. It’s been so long since I’ve read the story so a lot of little elements of the plot are fresh surprises, which is awesome! I love these original versions of the characters so much, Sailor Moon and Chibi-Usa in particular. Everyone is super classy.

Speaking of another type of classy, I bought a few new seinen titles all of which are continutations of series I’m collecting – Saturn Apartments (Vol.05), Blood Alone (Vol.06) and Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service (Vol.12). The first two are really relaxing reads, very laid back and mellow, even when things get dramatic. In some series I’d find it boring, but in these two it’s their greatest charm. Kurosagi is still fun to read, what with all the corpses, murders and creepy endings. The wait between each book is rough! I do hope we see a return to the connecting stories earlier books had though. I miss those…

Last, but certainly not least, comes some new boys’ love! Digital Manga served up another action-packed and sex-filled time with the fourth and fifth volumes of Ayano Yamane’s Finder series. So much gun-touting melodrama as the hunter is now the hero – it’s the sort of kinda-trash you can’t help but love. It was all fluff, feelings and a little physical-fun, however, in the sixth volume of Hinako Takanaga’s Tyrant Who Falls In Love (Vol.06). I really like this series because of the characters but it’s tough watching their relationship dragged on so long. In this volume the cast of the prequel series, Challengers, show up too – bonus!

Those were my recent purchases – feel free to share some of their own! Anything you’d recommend? Loved? Despised? Share the contents of your own swag bag!

Otaku USA: On The Shelf – March 28, 2012

Otaku USA: On The Shelf - March 28, 2012

Where did the past week go…? No, really, I haven’t even been out to my local comic shop for over two weeks. No wonder something doesn’t feel right! This week’s comics in combination with those I have waiting for me from last week should be a definite kick in the butt to get out there and buy though. You can see what’s out there new to buy this week at Otaku USA’s On The Shelf article.

With a new volume of Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service, a new Yoshihiro Tatsumi title to try out, a re-edition of Tezuka’s Dororo so I can finally own it all and Rohan at the Louvre, this feels like an especially classy week for manga releases!

Year In Review: Lissa’s Favourites of 2011

Lissa’s Favourites of 2011

There are no shortage of ‘Best Of’ lists this time of year. While I like popping around to different peoples’ sites and seeing what they thought, it’s a bit of a frustration that I can’t seem to write one myself. How people choose a solid list containing five or ten favourites, from across different genres and subject matters, is just something I can’t seem to muster the brain power for. Not enough conviction I suppose? There’s just so much to love!

But I can’t overlook the perfect chance to look back at all the great titles a year had to offer and 2011 had some really fantastic ones. So then where is this going, oh rambling one, you ask? My semi-traditional equivalent to the yearly best of – the random Lissa’s favourites and best-ofs list! Which really just means you get a lot more titles broken into a lot more categories so I can remain a lot more loving to a lot more series. And in some cases not so loving… From the Best Release Quality to the Favourite Fan Service and even to the most Gag Worthy – here are a bunch of my favourite titles from 2011!

Read more…

13 Days of Halloween: Kurosagi Delivery Service

Shannon, here – Halloween is my favourite holiday and to honour it I’m counting down 13 manga throughout the month that I think best capture the Halloween spirit. They aren’t all horror manga, as to me Halloween is about more than scares: it’s about a sense of fun and wonder. It’s about discovering that there may be more to this world than meets the eye. So with that in mind, there’s everything on this list from action-packed shounen to romantic-comedy to children’s manga to some lock-the-doors-and-leave-the-lights-on horror. (See all 13 Days of Halloween so far…)

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5. Kurosagi Delivery Service

Everyone has their own personal squick buttons. Kurosagi Delivery Service manages to push all of mine. If there’s one kind of horror that gets under my skin more than any other, it’s body horror. Body horror is known for being gross as much as it is for being scary. Bodily fluid and functions are often at the forefront of the scares, earning EWW!s as well as AHHH!s from the audience. But once you get past the disgusting surface, body horror is about something much deeper than humans’ gut reaction to grossness. Body horror forces us to confront the fact that, for all our dazzling intellect and capabilities to reason, we are still stuck in these hulking, often gross physical forms, which will eventually perish and rot away.

Aside from the works of David Cronenberg, Kurosagi Delivery Service is the best example of body horror out there. The series follows a group of students at a Buddhist university. All of them have different talents (embalming, dowsing, communicating with the dead, etc) but quickly realize it’s hard to find work using these skills. The most ambitious among them, a computer-savy woman named Sasaki, decides that what they need to do is start a company of their own. And so the Kurosagi Delivery Service is born.  The way it works is that the group finds a corpse and promises the dead spirit they will carry out its last wish in return for payment. While it sounds like a straight forward premise, practically every case becomes a lot more complicated very fast, becoming more and more twisted (in every sense of the word) with each horrifying revelation.

Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service is not only unnerving, it’s also very smart, with constant of commentary on society and its customs for both the living and the dead. Despite how dark and gory the stories can get, the cast manages to keep things light with their bickering and banter. Dark Horse is doing an amazing job with the series, including a ton of adaptation notes in the back which help highlight some of the manga’s themes and references.

Lissa has reviewed quite a few volumes of the manga right here.

Super Savings: RightStuf Deal on Dark Horse Releases

Super Savings on Dark Horse Releases

I don’t know about you guys but I’m always on the look out for deals and sales that help me keep filling the shelves without breaking the bank. There’re always amazing sales going on somewhere, whether it’s your local shops or an online vendor. A sale doesn’t help if you don’t know about it however so I’m from here on out I’m going to do what I can to spread the frugal-love and let you guys know about some great sales you can currently take advantage of.

This morning RightStuf posted it’s newest deal (they change them on a fairly consistent weekly schedule): at least 33% off all listed Dark Horse releases! For books that often range on the highside of pricing, this is a good time to pick up some favourites at a price you won’t find everyday. Plus it’s far easier than one may think to buy enough to reach those free-shipping limits… (dangerously so!).

There’re pages and pages of books to choose from, ranging from the brutally-fantastic Berserk to the classic genre-inspiring Astro Boy and something somewhat inbetween with the newest volume of the wonderfully creepy Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service. You can also sneak in a pre-order for the upcoming CLAMP omnibus collection of Magic Knight Rayearth and save yourself $6. Along with lots of manga volumes, there’re also some art books hidden in there as well (including the upcoming Blade of the Immortal).

Review: Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service (Vol. 10)

Reviewer: Lissa Pattillo

Author: Eiji Otsuka
Manga-ka: Housui Yamazaki
Publisher: Dark Horse
Rating: Mature (18+)
Release Date: February 2010

Synopsis: “The dead don’t walk in Kurosagi — that is, not without a little help . . . and it’s a shock to the system when the delivery service finds out what’s making their clients rise up! Then, for Numata to take off his sunglasses for anyone, it must be a grave matter . . . or, more likely, a matter of someone not yet in their grave…”

A new face arrives on scene and strange old myths resurface in this tenth volume of Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service. Spiritual powers may been the KCDS’s bread-and-butter (on the rare occasion it actually pays) but with technology springing up to both challenge and compliment their work, it’s becoming a whole new ballgame in the corpse finding business.

Read more…

An All Manga Eve This Halloween 2009

Halloween 2009

Halloween is almost here – I hope everyone already has a spooky stack of books to get them in the mood this year! I sat down this week to put together a list of books I would recommend for readers but it occurred to me I already did that last year, and most of those books will forever stay on my lists of must-reads for Halloween.

You can check out my recommendations from last year which still sport some of my favorite titles:

Good Reads for Halloween (Part One)Black Sun Silver Moon, Death Note, Kieli, Nightmares for Sale, Tokyo Babylon, Pathos, Mail, Fairy Cube, Ghost Hunt, Twilight of the Dark Master

Good Reads for Halloween (Part Two)God Child, Alive, Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service, Pet Shop of Horrors, Beyond My Touch, Daemonium, XXXHolic, MW, Parasyte, Cat Eyed Boy

Here at Kuriousity we’ve also enjoyed some great books this month for Halloween reviews such as Cowa!, Rin-Ne (Vol. 01), Cat Eyed Boy (Vol. 02), The Antique Gift Shop (Vol. 09) and Nightschool (Vol. 02).

My top recommendations for Halloween reads still remain Mail, Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service (post image credit) and Ghost Hunt – three series that should not be missed if you like your books leaving you with a reason to keep the lights on! And a newer recommendation for those who love the spirit of Halloween, but don’t need the scares that’re often associated with it, is the recently released Soul Eater from Yen Press (which you can expect a review for just in time for Halloween!).

What about you? Please share your suggestions and favourites – I’d definitely love some more ideas for what to sit down with and enjoy once the candy, costumes and chaos of Halloween dies down this Saturday evening :)

Happy Halloween!

Mini Review: The Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service (Vol. 09)

The Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service (Vol. 09) 
Eiji Otsuka (Story) & Housui Yamazaki (Art)
Published by Dark Horse (May 2009)

My favourite part of this volume would be its last chapter, which gives focus to Yuji Yata and his alien hand puppet, and the group’s embalmer, Keiko Makino. Though the two are there for nearly all the cases, they tend to get the short end of the attention stick. Yata in particular is often shadowed over because having the power of an obnoxious hand puppet is rarely as useful as it sounds. Yet in this chapter we not only learn a great deal more about these two, er, three characters, but we also see Yata and his partner exhibit a skill of power that’s quite impressive indeed, and sort of a shame we haven’t seen more of it until now. A little surprise fluff topped it off at the end for a sweet endnote, a contrast to some of the darker flashbacks in the chapter itself. Although, is it just me, or is Keiko teenage girl mannerisms of speech much more pronounced in this book?

Other episodic events in this volume involve a girl hounded from beyond the grave by dolls, a bodiless peeping tom in a woman’s changing locker, and my favourite of the corpse-involved, a story about a group of boys with special powers to hear things from another world. There wasn’t much in the way of connecting plot devices as previous volumes have been including but the character-driven strength of the cast of Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service still keeps each chapter interesting. The nurse who shares powers similar to Karatsu does return though, as I’d hoped she would, and as much as I love the added chance for corpse-encounters she brings to the story, it’s the three-way love triangle being poked at that actually interests me all the more.

Many of the stories throughout the series work from inspiration of current day events, historical facts and urban legends, and this fact along with an attractively grounded art style and real sense of personality and flaw from these characters, makes the whole series that much more compelling. There’s also the humour, which never fails to amuse. Numata, you alone never cease to entertain.

Though a little sad that previously insinuated plot directions aren’t continued here in the ninth volume, there was still the usual quality of creepy story telling along with a great final chapter chock full of character goodness. I also never tire of the quality of Dark Horse’s releases: reads well, looks awesome and has lots of translation notes for the curious. As per usual, next volume please!

Review written May 30, 2009 by Lissa Pattillo
Book purchased from Strange Adventures

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