Sunday, May 5, 2013

Manga Review: Jiu Jiu, Volume 3, by Touya Tobina

Rating (Out of 5): ~4.5
Publisher: VIZ Media (Shojo Beat)
Publish Date: Jan 1st, 2013
Volumes: 5
Spoilers?: Minor.
Review of Volume One and Volume Two.

Goodreads Synopsis:

Werewolves at the door...and in the houseBorn into a family of “Hunters,” Takamichi’s destiny is to pursue and slay demons. When her twin brother is killed, she is saved from despair by a pair of Jiu Jiu—shape-shifting familiars—in the form of two wolf pups named Snow and Night. Now Takamichi is in high school and an active Hunter. Snow and Night can’t wait to attend school in their human form to “protect” her. But are they ready to go off leash...?

Takamichi’s Jiu Jiu Obedience Training Goals

1. Don’t run away before a critical meeting of the Hunter Clans. (If only there were leash laws for Jiu Jiu...)

2. Speak now or forever hold your peace.

3. Get along with other shape-shifting familiars, little doggies.

Reads R to L (Japanese Style) for teen plus audiences.


I am obsessed with this series. Like, obsessed. I cannot get enough. I can’t even get close to enough. The next volume I should be getting soon, and then I have to wait a while for the one after that, which will be the last one, and what will I do after that? I just… I don’t know. I don’t want it to end. Ever. It’s amazing. And I love it.
For some reason, the contents of each volume seem to blur a little bit, which sucks. But then, when I go to write up the review for that volume (as I’m doing now, obviously), I flip through the pages to recap it, only to end up grinning and re-reading the volume. It’s a horrible cycle, really. Horrible in the not-horrible-at-all sense, of course, because I get to read the volume again, and I love it. Although it kind of also just makes me want to gush about the characters, mainly Snow and Night, which distracts me from actually talking about the volume.
So, things are getting intense in this volume. It starts out all fluffy and adorable and sweet (calm down, my heart), but quickly gets serious. We meet a couple new characters in this volume, including Takamichi’s ex-fiance and current fiancé, and their jiu jiu, and a whole bunch of other Important Hunter Family Members/Elders. Takamichi is getting older, closer to marrying age, and the hunter families are having a big family meeting. Also, we get to see Takamichi’s father more, and get some history and a flashback to when Takamichi was younger and actually see her twin brother.
There’s a family party after the meeting, where everyone is drinking. Including Takamichi’s father, who is horribly sadistic when drunk, and Takamichi forcing her fiancé, Seijiro, to get drunk. Then there’s a possibly romantic scene between Takamichi and Seijiro, and a not good scene between her and her ex-fiance, then a violent one involving Snow and Night, and then Takamichi and her ex-fiance and another person. The ending to the volume is not particularly good, leaving some questions, and I’m sure even more serious stuff will get cleared up in the next volume. Also, there were a couple cute comic strips at the end of the volume; there usually is, and it’s usually adorable.
So, the new characters. Seijiro seems really sweet, and like he’s upset with the troubles he’s having with the fiancé thing, in that he wants to do it and Takamichi doesn’t. His jiu jiu, Ripple, seems nice and has a thing for Snow, which will be interesting and possibly adorable, I’m sure. Mika, her ex-fiance, seems like a bit of a jerk. Not a very big fan of him at the moment, and I feel a little bad for his jiu jiu, White, who seems oddly quiet but intriguing.
I liked seeing Takamichi’s father, since we’ve only got very small glimpses of him before, although I would like to see more of how him and Takamichi get along. We also got to see his jiu jiu, Moon, who is like an older, more experienced influence on Snow and Night, which is just rather entertaining. Also, I feel bad for him because of how Takamichi’s father acts when drunk. (He’s kind of horrible to Moon when under the influence of alcohol.)
I love Snow and Night. They are my favorites, all the way, and I just love them. I cannot get enough of them. I feel really bad for them about this whole fiancé business, and how they’re not taking it very well. I’m hugely conflicted about it, myself. I think Seijiro is sweet and honest, and I like him, but I’m starting to think that Night has romantic feelings for Takamichi more so than Snow, and so I’m rooting for him all the way. I just… I don’t think I’ll be happy if there isn’t something, but I also don’t really think that the marriage isn’t going to happen. I’m just not particularly happy with the direction this is all going; at the least, I’m conflicted and wary.
Mainly, though, I’m loving it. This series is so unique, and sweet, and adorable, and gorgeous, and heatwarming, and grin-worthy and fangirl-worthy. I’m just in love with this series, and these characters, and I really want the next book to arrive so I can start it right now.

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