Sunday, July 31, 2016

Manga Review: Barakamon, Volume 5, by Satsuki Yoshino

Rating (Out of 5): ~3.5
Publisher: Yen Press
Release Date: June 2015
Volumes: 13+
Spoilers?: No.
Volume: 1. 4. 6.

Goodreads Synopsis:

This is the most realistic Tarzan make-believe I’ve ever seen……

Gaining tremendous inspiration from nature, handsome young (and bug-hating) calligrapher Seishuu Handa makes strides in his creative endeavors. But while anguishing over the individuality of his calligraphy, he receives a phone call from Tokyo, and…?!! The tale of bumbling Sensei, who doesn’t even hold back against children, and his warm island neighbors trundles into the last days of summer, which bring with them bittersweet memories!


This series is definitely growing on me. To the point where I’m looking forward to the next one.
The main characters are definitely Handa and Naru. They get the most attention, and their relationship is important to the series. But there are so many other characters, and I like that they all get enough attention. I like Miwa, who enjoys teasing Handa, and has a crush on Hiro. I think Hiro’s a fun character—he’s his own guy, and he’s cool with that. He’s a teenage guy, growing up, and I like his friendship with Handa. There’s Tama, with her yaoi imagination, even if she doesn’t realize it.
Handa has grown close to everyone there, for a reason. They’re all pretty much an extended family. There’s a lot of comedic one-chapters here; Naru’s birthday comes, Handa gets lost in the woods, Naru gets picked on and Handa and Hiro end up having a rivalry with the middle-schoolers, there’s another festival. And then there’s the cliffhanger.
When something significant and important happens, when we get real development, it’s subtle. What with all the comedy, I think it works well. And given the way this volume ends, I imagine we’ll get something in the next volume, subtle but meaningful. I’m looking forward to it.

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