The Volume Rating Thread

20thCenturyBoy

Thousand Master
Gantz: Volume 10 The shorty alien mission ends and I'm happy enough with it. When this mission first began it was the first time i thought that the missions really needed to change up (Go after alien, doesn't seem strong, turns out there's more that are stronger). So this mission was a nice change of pace, but we move on form that to an even bigger change: longer development building up future characters.

We're introduced to Sakurai and Daizaemon (who looks like he's walked straight out of a Tekken game). I liked that Daizaemon had an accent, always makes it more fun to read when there's an accent. The new plot point involving Sakurai was very interesting.

Single favourite moment: Kei goes from going to end things with Kojima on one page, the next he's ******* her. Glorious! I actually quite like them as a couple, the gradual change of Kei in the photos together was good and I was originally disheartened when they teased the "it was all a dream" bit. Glad it's not.

3.5 out of 5*
 
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20thCenturyBoy

Thousand Master
Blood Alone 1-in-3 Omnibus (vol.1-3)

I just picked this up not knowing a thing about it, had never even heard of it, I read the back of it seemed interesting and so bought it. It's turned out to be a good decision.

This is a really sweet and charming series, with plenty of funny moments. It does mainly slice of life stuff, but with vampires, which is good but is able to throw in a bit of crime too. I imagine later on they get more into a serious vampire story, bits of which are only hinted at here with the clans, etc. Misaki is super cute and her relationship with Kuroe is just lovely, it's so adorable when she gets jealous or flustered over him.

I'm definetly going to pick up more of this series later on.

7 out of 10
 

20thCenturyBoy

Thousand Master
Attack On Titan Vol.1

I've been really looking forward ot this and it didn't disappoint. A really intriguing story with some very strong moments early on, it's totally brutal too which is great.

The art feels a bit rough at times though, and I was very shocked that the guy we think is going to be the main protaganist ends up dying.

I eagerly await the next volume.

8 out of 10
 
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20thCenturyBoy said:
Attack On Titan
I was very shocked that the guy we think is going to be the main protaganist ends up dying.
That scene shocked me too but I'm not convinced that Eren is actually dead. He lost and arm and a leg so things aren't looking too bright for the poor lad, but the Titan didn't appear to chomp into anything vital. And this being shounen and all...

But yeah. An intriguing premise, some gloriously brutal violence, and scruffy art. That about sums it up.

------

Velvet Kiss v1 - 8/10

Salaryman Shin is unwittingly lumbered with an 80 million yen debt that he can't pay back. But the creditors offer him a lifeline: all he has to do is befriend a young woman and they'll freeze the debt as long as the two of them remain friends.

The young woman is Kanoko, a strikingly beautiful girl who spends a fortune on clothes and lives in a swanky hotel suite where she holds sex parties with her friends. But despite everything, she seems desperately lonely and emotionally distant.

Using the debt as leverage, Kanoko basically makes a slave of Shin, calling him at all hours to do everything from bringing her cakes to... well, you know. As Shin's work productivity drops and his social life suffers he starts to consider whether it's worth the hassle, but after he and Kanoko fall out he finds that he's unable to get her out of his mind, and not because of the debt. Kanoko seems to miss Shin, too, apparently preferring his company to that of her hedonistic chums.

Though this manga is released under DMP's adult line, the story and characterisation are too good for me to consider it as porn (and it's not all that graphic anyway). My favourite thing about Velvet Kiss is, obviously, Kanoko. Not only does she have an exceptional beauty and a cracking set of... twintails, but she's a character of many layers and in her the female author has absolutely nailed the essence of a beautiful and mysterious woman's allure. And I don't feel that about many female characters in any manga or anime, be they for adults or otherwise.
 
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VoxPhantom

Stand User
Madoka Magica vol. 1.

Finally got round to reading this today, and it was fairly good. This volume only had four chapters, which seems a little light - but I guess if it's a manga adaptation of a 12-episode series, there isn't too much material to work with.

Whilst the overall premise of the story is fairly interesting, I didn't think Madoka was introduced very well, and she came across a little dull. I know there were only four chapters, but by the end of them I didn't care that much what was going on with Madoka.

The action scenes in this manga aren't brilliant. I found some of the drawings difficult to comprehend, and I didn't feel any sense of movement from panels that seemed to be implying high-speed action.

I'll pick up the next volume when it comes out, but I was expecting a lot more from this, given the hype over the anime. 6/10
 

Joshawott

Monsieur Monster
AUKN Staff
VoxPhantom said:
Madoka Magica vol. 1.

Finally got round to reading this today, and it was fairly good. This volume only had four chapters, which seems a little light - but I guess if it's a manga adaptation of a 12-episode series, there isn't too much material to work with.

Whilst the overall premise of the story is fairly interesting, I didn't think Madoka was introduced very well, and she came across a little dull. I know there were only four chapters, but by the end of them I didn't care that much what was going on with Madoka.

The action scenes in this manga aren't brilliant. I found some of the drawings difficult to comprehend, and I didn't feel any sense of movement from panels that seemed to be implying high-speed action.

I'll pick up the next volume when it comes out, but I was expecting a lot more from this, given the hype over the anime. 6/10
Yeah, the anime is definitely a lot better than the manga; the witch scenes and the action wasn't shown as well in the manga. I'd definitely recommend checking out the anime.
 

20thCenturyBoy

Thousand Master
Hayate the Combat Butler Vol.1

8/10


There's not much to go on plot, obviously, but I genuinely laughed out loud at this at times. Some really great gags, think the best were just the misunderstanding of the whole kidnapping incident "I want you as my hostage" and some excellent sight gags like when Hayate is told that his wounds should have re-opened and then they do with a huge gushing of blood.

I've got up to Vol.9 to read and look forward to reading the rest and with news of a new anime adaptation I think I'll definetly be watching that when it comes around, will need to check out the previous one too.
 

Joshawott

Monsieur Monster
AUKN Staff
Bunny Drop volume 1

One thing that slightly irked me throughout this volume was how inconsistent the character designs of Rin and Daikichi's mother could be in different panels. Also, the speech bubbles often don't give any indication of who is speaking (although at times it's obvious).

Other than that, I really enjoyed this volume.

8/10

EDIT:
Toradora! 4
I'm just going to start with this: I loved this volume. It sure is a lot perverted than previous ones in the series, but it's also a lot more humorous (the final bit with Minorin stating her favourite colour is clear had me cracking up!).

9/10
 
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Joshawott

Monsieur Monster
AUKN Staff
Yotsuba& 1

Azuma, you're a genius. Also, I can vouch that kids DO act like Yotsuba. So not only is it funny, but it's pretty realistic. Also, Jumbo looks like J. Michael Tatum.

9.5/10
 

Y-San

Shinki
Joshawott said:
VoxPhantom said:
Madoka Magica vol. 1.

Finally got round to reading this today, and it was fairly good. This volume only had four chapters, which seems a little light - but I guess if it's a manga adaptation of a 12-episode series, there isn't too much material to work with.

Whilst the overall premise of the story is fairly interesting, I didn't think Madoka was introduced very well, and she came across a little dull. I know there were only four chapters, but by the end of them I didn't care that much what was going on with Madoka.

The action scenes in this manga aren't brilliant. I found some of the drawings difficult to comprehend, and I didn't feel any sense of movement from panels that seemed to be implying high-speed action.

I'll pick up the next volume when it comes out, but I was expecting a lot more from this, given the hype over the anime. 6/10
Yeah, the anime is definitely a lot better than the manga; the witch scenes and the action wasn't shown as well in the manga. I'd definitely recommend checking out the anime.

Se I actually thought that the manga was a pretty solid adaption of the anime, though one would benefit from having previously watched the anime like ourselves, to fill in any blanks. Still, I would be so harsh, to me, it really felt one and the same, interchangeable with the anime. For better or worse.
 

Ian Wolf

Symphogear
AUKN Staff
Secretary's Job?

Seeing as how I can't really review this book proper due to the fact that as it is a +18 yaoi title, and therefore not suitable for display on the front page of the website, I thought I would post my thoughts here.

This is the first yaoi I have ever read and was not sure what to expect. Yes, there was some sex, but mostly it was mainly dramatic and comedic. The main character, the secretary Takase, put me in mind of a cross between Honey and Haruhi from Ouran (Honey's cuteness and shortness with Haruhi's appearance).

My main disappointment was that the story was too short. It only consists of half the book and the rest was taken up by shorter stories. But still, a great read.

Score: 9 / 10
 

20thCenturyBoy

Thousand Master
Claymore Vol.20

8/10


Despite the length of time between volume releases and the fact that Yagi doesn't distinguish his characters well making it hard to remember what's happening and who's who, I continue to love this series.

After a couple of chapters with the characters calling each other by name you remember which blonde woman is which, that's the only complaint I ever have with Yagi's art because the rest of it is fantastic. The action and fight scenes are always top notch and the story remains intriguing and gripping, there's always a new twist on the horizon like Miria not being dead, didn't see that coming. Also, the scene of her being slashed and chopped up was brutal.
 
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20thCenturyBoy

Thousand Master
Bakuman Vol.13

9/10


Bakuman is always a very satisfying read because of just how much content and variety you get every volume. Mashiro and Takagi fighting brought a needed change in their relationship momentarily. When Kaya came across them having their manly fight thinking it was for real that was just priceless. I was glad to see they didn't win the Love Fest and are just going to concentrate on PCP. Them winning that and having 2 series would've been just too absurd I feel, I like that failure is often a prevailing theme in furthering this series. Their heads are screwed on now and they'll hopefully keep their feet, and thus this story, on the ground.

What really makes this volume is Hiramaru. He is by far and away my favourite character and as always he and Yoshida have some brilliant moments and even get a whole chapter. Yoshida thinking that Hiramaru might've kidnapped Aoki had me in fits, just brilliant. It was really great to see Aoki accept Hiramaru's feelings, don't think it'll work out for him though, as his work is all about pessimism so I can see his style changing and failing because of this. Much like Mushirogi I think Fukuda is going to settle down a bit now he's getting the anime. His face after being told that was quite touching, he looked like he really felt a sense of achievemnet.
 
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MrLaserSharkKH

Stand User
ilmaestro said:
fabricatedlunatic said:
Velvet Kiss v1 - 8/10
Oh hype, Great license.

Agreed, Read the first volume myself quite recently and my thoughts basically kind of echo what Fab' said on one of the previous pages. Definitely a good read one of the best Volume 1's I have read in a while personally infact, The only thing that I can mark it down on is the grayscaling done on a few of the chapters, makes characters look differently than they actually should, but this usually happens with most grayscales anyway so not much you can really do there.

So Velvet Kiss: Volume 1 is a 9/10 for me
 

Joshawott

Monsieur Monster
AUKN Staff
Puella Magi Madoka Magica 2

Unfortunately, the same problems from the last volume are still here (witch scenes looking far less dynamic and weird as their anime counterpart) and the fact that pages are way too cluttered during action scenes - which is more obvious in this volume due to the increase in action scenes.

Also, the way Kyoko was drawn bugged me. In some panels, she ended up looking pretty masculine. Kyubey should also never be given facial expressions - the sinister looks kind of detract from how the character just simply doesn't understand humans and ends up painting him as more of a typical antagonist.

And lastly, a translation niggle: This volume uses both "Walpurgis Nacht" and "Walpurgis Night". Stick with one please...

I did enjoy this volume a lot because well, I absolutely adore this story (and this is pretty much episodes 5-8 of the anime, nothing added and only transition scenes really taken away). However, the anime is still the better medium by a long shot. It also does show just how much aspects like the voice acting, the soundtrack and the animation really helped make the original series.

7/10
 

Professor Irony

CYBER FUNKER
Moderator
F.Compo (Family Compo) v.1-2

Artistically, Tsukasa Hojo has long been a hero of mine, but I've only ever seen him do action manga, so it came as quite a surprise to hit on this seinen rom-com from the late '90s.

The plot follows a parent-less undergraduate who suddenly finds himself living with the family of an uncle he never knew. Much to his dismay, however, his uncle is a crossdressing man who is married to a crossdressing woman.

Despite the occasional lapse in good taste (in particular, a minor subplot about domestic violence is badly dealt with), the subject matter is handled with surprising sensitivity in an engaging series, capable of both warm humour and gentle pathos.

The precise, realistic nature of Hojo's artwork always appealed to me and here it seems to be even more refined than it was before. There isn't a huge amount of variety in his approach to character design (protagonist Giba might as well be a slightly younger version of Ryo from City Hunter) and his panel layout is hardly avant garde, but the attention to detail in clothing and anatomy is absolutely flawless.

I feel it's kind of a shame that Hojo went straight back to familiar territory immediately after this one finished (his next work was Angel Heart, a quasi-sequel/remake of City Hunter) as, while it might not set the world on fire, this is proof that he's certainly capable of more than just detective manga.
 

Max Takeshi

Great Teacher
High School of the Dead: Volume 7.

And thanks to the hiatus that's that.

Another slow volume (which has been the case since volume 4), but at least it was an improvement on the last two.

Things have moved on (a bit), and the journey continues. The series returns to fan-service, and some of the violence feels less gratuitous this time and has a bit of a poetic style to it.

But I still feel that...
Asami's death was a mistake, as she would have contributed greatly to the characters.

Ah well, doesn't matter since... it's... the... end.

6/10

The series? Overall I'd say... 5/10.
 

20thCenturyBoy

Thousand Master
Attack On Titan Vol.2

8/10


Though I still feel the art can be a bit rough at times I think it's improved slightly, and the writing and powerful visuals are more than enough to keep it going.

Think we managed to geta bit more of a feel for Mikasa and Armin this volume, though I'm still at a loss to the rest of the squad who all merge into one really for me. Maybe as the series gets on things will improve in enhancing the supporting cast, I do feel that better artwork could have led to more striking/memorable character designs that would've at least made some of them instantly recognisable.

Armin now has the ability to turn into a titan? Very cool, and I'm very interested to see exactly how that works/happened. The scenes of him tearing apart the other titans were some of the best and the design of his titan does stand apart form the rest really well and is really cool.
 
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