Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Manga Review: Haikyu!!, Volume 9, by Haruichi Furudate

Rating (Out of 5): ~4
Publisher: Shonen Jump (VIZ Media)
Release Date: February 2017
Volumes: 27+
Spoilers?: No.
Volume: 1. 8. 10.

Goodreads Synopsis:

Shoyo Hinata is out to prove that in volleyball you don't need to be tall to fly!

Ever since he saw the legendary player known as "the Little Giant" compete at the national volleyball finals, Shoyo Hinata has been aiming to be the best volleyball player ever! He decides to join the team at the high school the Little Giant went to—and then surpass him. Who says you need to be tall to play volleyball when you can jump higher than anyone else?

Motivated by their heartbreaking loss to Aoba Johsai, Karasuno now works towards a new goal—the Spring Tournament! The team gears up for a trip to Tokyo for a training camp with some of the top teams in Tokyo, including Nekoma, but there’s something they need to do first…pass their finals! Hinata, Kageyama, Nishinoya and Tanaka are all at risk of not being allowed to go. What are they going to do?!


We don't get too much actual volleyball in this volume. The team has to prepare for the training camp in Tokyo, but first they have to deal with exams. And there are a good few who do not excel in school. Somewhat surprisingly, Kageyama struggles with school, and unsurprisingly so does Shoyo. They're both awful. But everyone works together to study and memorize and do their best on the coming finals.
During this, we meet a new character. Yachi is a first year, and she's trying out for their manager, since the third-years will be leaving soon. She's very hesitant, but she's smart and crafty. I think she'll fit in rather well. Her and Shoyo are already forming a friendship, unsurprisingly.
Kageyama and Shoyo get to meet the star of Shiratorizawa in this volume, and it's an odd stand-off. It leads to the training camp, where everyone is putting their all into being better. I was surprised that we're not getting too much actual in-game volleyball during this, but more character growth and relationship progression. Shoyo in particular seems to be taking a step forward.
Another new character we meet is Ryunosuke's older sister. She's feisty and a fighter, and I like her. She gives Shoyo a surprising insight into the original “Little Giant”. I didn't actually put much thought into the two meeting at any point, but it seems to be hinted at a couple times here. That should be interesting, even if it doesn't happen for a while.
I'm very into this series by this point. Can't wait to read the next one.

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

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