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.
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!