Monday, February 29, 2016

Manga Review: Horimiya, Volume 2, by Hero and Daisuke Hagiwara

Rating (Out of 5): ~4.5
Publisher: Yen Press
Release Date: January 26, 2016
Volumes: 8+
Spoilers?: Not really.
Volume: 1. 3.

Goodreads Synopsis:

Youth, ultra-lightly carbonated!!
At first glance, the ultra-popular Hori-san seems like a flashy high school girl, but in reality, she's plain, practical, and domestic. On the other hand, the bespectacled Miyamura-kun comes across as an average, gloomy fanboy, but he's actually liberally pierced and tattooed and downright gorgeous. Now that Hori and Miyamura are keeping each other's secrets after their little run-in outside of class, the distance between them is shrinking bit by bit...

This bubbly, sweet, "aww"-inspiring tale of school life continues!


I can’t believe how instantaneous my obsession with this series is, but I love it. I can’t get enough. Why isn’t there more already? Seriously?
Miyamura is still getting used to having friends. There’s a really sweet scene between him and Ishikawa in this volume, as Miyamura realizes that he does have friends now. He’s not seen as the lone weirdo anymore. And it’s just so goshdarn sweet. Their bromance is the best. This is then contrasted when they have a fight over Hori—a fight that’s not really out of anger as it is instinct, which is hilarious.
Hori is being used by the student council, her kindness being taken advantage of to do their extra work. This leads up to Hori having an argument over Miyamura, in a fantastic scene where she fights for her place over him, without him knowing. It just makes me extremely happy.
Miyamura is still learning how to have friends, so having actual feelings for Hori, and her returning them, hasn’t really processed as a possibility. So the scene where their hands touch, and tangle, is incredibly sweet and important and I love it.
I want more of this series. It’s ridiculous how in love with this series, with these characters, that I am. The humor, the sweetness, the emotions… I love everything about it and I want a dozen more books right now please.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Manga Review: Citrus, Volume 1, by Saburouta

Rating (Out of 5): ~3-3.5
Publisher: Seven Seas
Release Date: December 2014
Volumes: 4+
Spoilers?: No.
Volume: 2.

Goodreads Synopsis:

Citrus is an all-new yuri manga series that offers a bittersweet love story coupled with gorgeous artwork. Fans of Morinaga Milk’s Girl Friends will find themselves enthralled with Citrus’s unique blend of comedy, melodrama, and secret desire between girls.

Aihara Yuzu, a high school girl whose main interests are fashion, friends, and having fun, is about to get a reality check. Due to her mom's remarriage, Yuzu has transferred to a new, all-girls school that is extremely strict. Her real education is about to begin.

From day one, happy-go-lucky Yuzu makes enemies, namely the beautiful yet stern student council president Mei. So what happens when a dejected Yuzu returns home and discovers the shock of her life: that Mei is actually her new step-sister who has come to live with her? Even more surprising, when Mei catches Yuzu off guard and kisses her out of the blue, what does it all mean?


I expected something a little more typical, I think. Although, I don’t know, I suppose I don’t read enough yuri to really know what’s typical.
Aihara is being forced to move and transfer to a new school, because her mother is getting married. And in this change, she gets a step-sister, Mei, who for some reason pushes her in interesting ways.
Aihara is stubborn and brash and rebellious. And surprisingly shy and embarrassed around Mei, even if she’s pushy and curious and finding out that she might actually like her. She’s a bit high-strung, but she does have a good heart in her.
Mei, on the other hand, is standoffish, strict. She seems more beaten down, doing what she’s told instead of what she wants, to me. She doesn’t seem to feel much, and she lets others do what they want with her. But for some reason, she’s attracted to Aihara. Or at least Aihara is attracted to her, and wants to do something about it. 
I wasn’t expecting the direction that Mei’s feelings went, or the complications with her and her family. I also wasn’t expecting this much conflict about the attraction from both parties. It has me intrigued to see where the story goes from here.

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Manga Review: QQ Sweeper, Volume 2, by Kyousuke Motomi

Rating (Out of 5): ~4.5
Publisher: Shojo Beat (VIZ Media)
Release Date: February 2, 2016
Volumes: 3 + Sequel
Spoilers?: Light.
Volume: 1. 3.

Goodreads Synopsis:

Fumi’s image keeps overlapping with that of Fuyu, Kyutaro’s childhood crush, who remains in his thoughts to this day. Meanwhile, Fumi starts to work as a Sweeper with Kyutaro’s family, but she struggles with keeping her past a secret. Has Fumi finally found a place to call home or will her cursed past catch up to her?


In this volume, Fumi’s curse shows up, something she’s been running from all this time. She believes she’s cursed, because everyone she gets close to gets hurts, bad things follow her, and it starts happening again at her school. She decides to leave again, to run away, but thankfully Kyutaro catches her.
They convince her to stay, at least a little longer, and learn how the sweeping really works. And the more time she spends with Kyutaro, the more their chemistry grows, and the more he’s convinced that she is the girl he met when he was younger.
Ugh, I’m already in love with them together. I like Fumi a lot, she’s a good girl who just doesn’t want to hurt anyone. There’s clearly more to her backstory, and I’m intrigued by that. Kyutaro is a sweetheart, too, and I love him. I love how he’s so stuck on that girl from his past, and what it means to him that Fumi might be her.
The mix of drama, serious, and humor is so well done. There’s definitely more serious in this series so far, and the contrast is so pretty, the artwork is gorgeous. The humor is well-placed, and still makes me smile. I also like the mentions of the Dengeki characters in this series, as well.
I can’t believe how quickly I’ve fallen for this series. I love it already, and can’t wait for more.

A review copy was provided by the publisher, VIZ Media, for an honest review. Thank you so, so much!

Friday, February 26, 2016

Novel Review: The Dark Divine (The Dark Divine, #1) by Bree Despain

Rating (Out of 5): ~3.5
Genre: YA Supernatural Romance
Publisher: Egmont
Release Date: 2009
Spoilers?: No.

Goodreads Synopsis:

Grace Divine, daughter of the local pastor, always knew something terrible happened the night Daniel Kalbi disappeared--the night she found her brother Jude collapsed on the porch, covered in his own blood--but she has no idea what a truly monstrous secret that night held.

The memories her family has tried to bury resurface when Daniel returns, three years later, and enrolls in Grace and Jude's high school. Despite promising Jude she'll stay away, Grace cannot deny her attraction to Daniel's shocking artistic abilities, his way of getting her to look at the world from new angles, and the strange, hungry glint in his eyes.

The closer Grace gets to Daniel, the more she jeopardizes her life, as her actions stir resentment in Jude and drive him to embrace the ancient evil Daniel unleashed that horrific night. Grace must discover the truth behind the boy's dark secret...and the cure that can save the ones she loves. But she may have to lay down the ultimate sacrifice to do it--her soul.

The Cover:

I really like this cover. I think it's really pretty, simple and eye-catching. I don't think it leads too much to the actual book, to the supernatural aspect, but I'm okay with that for the most part, especially since it's not a cheesy romance cover.


I’ve had this book on my shelf for a long time, and it was actually better than I expected.
When Daniel shows back up in town, Grace is forced to either ignore him and push away the past, or let him back in her life and find out what really happened between him and her brother all those years ago.
It’s definitely frustrating the way they’re all keeping Grace in the dark about it, but it’s a surprise when she finally figures out what happened. It makes sense why they kept it a secret, and why Daniel disappeared. I wasn’t terribly surprised by who was behind it all, but it’s still a surprise how it went down and who all knew.
This was better than I thought it would be; it kept me interested through the whole book, and I liked the relationship between Grace and Daniel. I liked him. And the plot was actually pretty interesting, and makes me a little intrigued for the next book. I don’t know if I’ll be picking it up, but I definitely would have enjoyed it more when I was in high school.