Rant – Anime/Manga being “Americanized”

I’m not sure how other people feel about it, but I think American movie company should leave Anime and Manga alone. I really don’t think any Anime fan has ever been watching an anime and thought “Hm, this would be so much better in live action with a bunch of white actors.” (Being a white person, it’s ok for me to say that :p)

Today, as I was scrolling through my facebook feed, I saw a trailer for a new Netflix produced live action movie of Death Note. (here) As I’m watching this short trailer, all i can think is “no, no, no, this is not right.” I’m not a die hard fan of Death Note but I did enjoy the anime enough that I own it. To be honest, it really annoys me when an anime or manga gets an American version. Like, do American movie produces just not have any of their own ideas any more, they have to steal from Anime and Manga? And they don’t even do a good job of it! They change too many things from the original so that it no longer does the original material justice.

What do you think of this new Death Note? Was there an anime you love that was turned into a terrible American adaptation?

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ARC Review – Dream Eater by K. Bird Lincoln

Dream EaterSummary (from Goodreads): Koi Pierce dreams other peoples’ dreams.

Her whole life she’s avoided other people. Any skin-to-skin contact–a hug from her sister, the hand of a barista at Stumptown coffee–transfers flashes of that person’s most intense dreams. It’s enough to make anyone a hermit.

But Koi’s getting her act together. No matter what, this time she’s going to finish her degree at Portland Community College and get a real life. Of course it’s not going to be that easy. Her father, increasingly disturbed from Altzheimer’s disease, a dream fragment of a dead girl from the casual brush of a creepy PCC professor’s hand, and a mysterious stranger who speaks the same rare Northern Japanese dialect as Koi’s father will force Koi to learn to trust in the help of others, as well as face the truth about herself.

I received a free copy of Dream Eater from NetGalley.

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This book was amazing. It drew me in from the very beginning and didn’t let go.

I have not read an Urban Fantasy book based on Japanese Folklore before so when i started reading Dream Eater and discovered that the magic of this book was all Japanese Folklore I was even more interested.

Koi is a very real kind of character. She’s spent the majority of her life avoiding physical contact with other people because of the type of power she has. It isn’t until she literally bumps into Ken (twice in one day) that she starts to learn what she really is and what she can do. Although there are many times that she could just lean on Ken and let him protect her, she doesn’t give into that and rises up on her own to protect herself and solve her own problems.

Perhaps a little on the short side, Dream Eater was packed with action and mystery with never a dull moment. I give this book 5/5 stars and highly recommend it to anyone who likes Urban Fantasy or Japanese Folklore.

TokyoPop – I Still Hate You

As I’m sure every person who reads manga in English knows, TokyoPop, who was a huge published of Manga in North America, shut down it’s North American office and stopped publishing manga in English. All the manga that they published had their licenses returned to the original owner and could be sold to other publishers, but how many of your favorites have actually been picked up by a new publisher? I know know several of mine have not and now if i want to read them, I have to find fan translated copies on the internet. My collection of the volumes may never be complete and if, by chance, a new publisher does pick up and publish my favorites, will the covers be the same? Will they match previous volumes or will I (most likely) feel the need to re-buy all volumes so that they match?

If any manga publishers are actually reading this (highly unlikely) here’s a few series you should pick up and publish in English:

Dazzle, Fate/Stay Night, Shinobi Life, and Togainu No Chi.

What do you think? What were some series you loved that were never finished due to TokyoPop closing?

Inu x Boku SS Volume 11 (Final)

*** MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS IF YOU HAVE NOT READ PREVIOUS VOLUMES ***

inu x boku 11Summary (froGoodreads): Efforts to reunite the members of Ayakashi Hall take an unexpected, tragic turn when one of their number falls in the battle. The death of a close friend serves to strengthen the remaining throwbacks’ resolve to prevent the grim outcome relayed by their future selves, even if it means exposing the dark truth of one of their most trusted allies…

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After one of their number has fallen to the Night Parade, the group tries to prevent Shimon from reading his memories, for they suspect that she may have been part of the Night Parade’s creation. The battle comes to a conclusive end and we get a look into Mikoto and Shimon’s past.

The series overall was very good. The plot is somewhat confusing since it goes back and forth in time, but once you get to the end, it all makes sense. There’s lots of comedy, action and romance to satisfy anyone.

The characters  are all unique individuals. Although many of them could be called perverts, they aren’t exactly “normal” perverts. Nobara is an adult woman who ogles other women and Kagerou is, in his own words, a super sadist. In the beginning, Kagerou was my least favorite character because of his attitude of everyone and everything either being a sadist or a masochist, but he began to grow on me throughout the story. Each and every character shows growth from the beginning, as they become their own little family.

The artwork  is well done. Detailed when it needs to be. the facial expressions of the characters really convey what they’re feeling.

There is an anime adaptation of this manga, but it doesn’t cover all of the manga. At only 12 episodes  it barely covers the prologue of the story and has little side stories that aren’t in the manga. If taken on it’s own and not compared to the manga as much, it is a decent show.

Have you read this manga or seen the anime? What did you think?

 

Inu x Boku SS Volumes 9 & 10

***MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS IF YOU HAVE NOT READ PREVIOUS VOLUMES***

inu x boku 9Summary (from Goodreads): At first, the residents of Ayakashi Hall are baffled by the discovery of a time capsule containing letters in their own handwriting, apparently from their future selves. But Natsume’s ability to see beyond confirms the truth, and he is overwhelmed by the future he glimpses. The others aren’t sure they want to know the full extent of what is to come when it has so obviously rattled Natsume and their later selves. Even with that knowledge, what can they do differently to face the Night Parade of a Hundred Demons?!

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In volume 9, we return to the past of 23 years ago. It begins with a few little episodes, including a Christmas one where Nobara and Sorinozuka meet a mermaid throwback, as well as a glimpse into Zange’s past.

About half way through the volume, the story returns to the day that the residents of Maison de Ayakashi made the time capsule for their future selves and they discover the letters sent back through time. This discovery changes how things originally went, causing Soushi and Ririchiyo not to have the moment in the park where they confess their feelings to one another.

Forewarned about the Night Parade, the group prepares to battle Mokoto Inugami on the day Carta would have been attacked. But, there is no attack and Mokoto doesn’t show himself.

Everything has changed and there’s no telling what is going to come next.

inu x boku 10Summary (from Goodreads):  The threat of the Night Parade of a Hundred Demons has driven the residents of Ayakashi Hall to take refuge at their family homes–whether they’d like to or not. But when they’re apart, the situation seems even more hopeless, and one by one the group reassembles at the place that brought them together. Whatever the future holds, they will face it with a united front!

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The Night Parade has attacked Ayakashi Halls in other areas, and the families of the group we’ve come to know and love force them to return to their old homes. While most go somewhat willingly, Soushi is taken by force and returned to the confinement her endured throughout his childhood.

One by one, the throwbacks decide that they should hall be together to form a united front against their enemy, and they gather back at Ayakashi Hall. Once they learn of Soushi’s confinement, there is no question about whether or not they will rescue him.

No one has seen Kagerou since the attacks began and an ally may not be as much of an ally as they all believed.

 

Rant – YA and Romance Novels

So, I’ve been noticing more and more lately that everyone seems to love YA and Romance novels. The giveaways on Goodreads are full of them. My friends seem to only add them, or read them. As I’m looking for new blogs to read everyone is reviewing YA novels, or Romance novels. Why are all vampire and werewolf and shifter novels in the Romance section? Can we not have supernatural stories that don’t involve two people going at it like dogs in heat?

Now, I have no problem with YA novels. I was a teenager once and at the time I liked YA novels. However, I am now an adult in my 30’s and I want to read books that are geared towards adults, but without all the sex! Is that so bad? Really, is it so wrong to want to read something that has a real plot and character growth and some fun or surprising plot twists?

*Sigh*58045ff02202c2c283e83de9c24448eb1334378059_full.jpg

Do you review and talk about adult books in your blog? If so, tell me in the comments because i will definitely check it out. Help me out fellow bloggers, help me find something I actually want to read about!

Inu x Boku SS Volumes 7 & 8

*** MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS IF YOU HAVE NOT READ PREVIOUS VOLUMES***

inu x boku 7Summary (from Goodreads): Ririchiyo has decided to make a fresh start, removing the blinders from her eyes and releasing Soushi from his contract. From now on, she has resolved to treat this incarnation of Soushi as his own person and to mourn the loss of the man she loved in a previous life. The change has given Ririchiyo a clear perspective, but Soushi’s heart remains clouded. Playing the part of his former self for Ririchiyo’s sake was an act–what will happen when Soushi’s true feelings come to light…?

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At the end of volume 6, Ririchiyo chose to release Soushi from the contract that makes him her bodyguard. She wants to see him for who he is currently, but then doesn’t have much of any interaction with him. Distraught, Soushi goes looking for the time capsule that they all buried in their previous lives. What follows is a look into the current Soushi’s past and how he grew up this time and why he loves Ririchiyo now.

This volume contains the usual silliness with a welcome party being thrown for Nobara where Ririchiyo, Carta, Zange, Kagerou and Watanuki dress up in various outfits to Nobar’s taste. Although, she doesn’t really care for Zange or Kagerou’s cross dressing.

Unknown to the rest of the group, Watanuki has made friends with Mikoto Inugami, the genetic throwback who lead the Night Parade and was responsible for nearly all of their deaths. The second act of the story is coming to a close and moving toward the conclusion.

Summary (from Goodreadsinu x boku 8): Mikoto Inugami’s friendship with Watanuki has alerted Zange to the fox’s plot to repeat the Night Parade, which claimed so many supernatural lives over twenty years ago. The residents of Ayakashi Hall rush to confront their enemy, but time is not on their side. Inugami’s plan is not to initiate the Parade in this incarnation-but to revisit the past!

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After enlisting Zange’s help to find Watanuki’s missing friend, the entire group learns of his friendship with Mikoto Inugami. They rush off to confront him but are already too late. Mikoto has traveled to the past, to 23 years ago when everything went horribly wrong. A brief argument ensues about who will follow into the past to stop him. Finally, Watanuki suggest sending letters to their past-selves into the past.

This volume was quite exciting. There was lots of action and the plot is moving forward like a freight train. What will happen next?

Inu x Boku SS volumes 5 & 6

*** MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS IF YOU HAVE NOT READ PREVIOUS VOLUMES***inu x boku 5

Summary (from Goodreads): In search of independence and solitude, the sharp-tongued Ririchiyo Shirakiin moves to the Maison de Ayakashi, an apartment building with its own Secret Service. Ririchiyo is eager to be alone, but upon her arrival, she is greeted by Soushi, an SS agent who seems…familiar somehow. Familiar and yet…not quite the same. Troubled by recurring dreams of a different Soushi-a man who loved her…and suffered for her-Ririchiyo chooses to accept her new circumstances and embrace the Soushi who now stands at her side…

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This volume is somewhat confusing to begin with. It seems like the story has circled back to the very beginning but it isn’t quite the same as it was. Clearly something has happened that isn’t revealed until later in the volume.

The relationship between Ririchiyo and Soushi hasn’t changed all that much. Soushi is still completely devoted to her, but now it seems he doesn’t know the reason why. Their relationship is actually quite dysfunctional. Soushi is very good at manipulating Ririchiyo to get exactly what he wants, which is generally being with her all the time.

I’m not entirely certain where this story is going.

inu x boku 6Summary (from Goodreads): To get better acquainted – and, in some cases, reacquainted – with each other, the residents of Ayakashi Hall spend the last weeks of summer break at a seaside vacation spot. Between beach basking and tests of courage, Ririchiyo slowly warms to her new cohorts, but the one resident who never seems to betray his emotions is Miketsukami – and the group is determined to fix that! Will her efforts to unmask Soushi expose the truth of who he is – that is, who he is not?

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I’m not quite sure what to say about this volume. On the inside cover, there is a blurb explaining precisely what is going on. This may contain spoilers! So basically, everyone except Sorinozuka was killed by the Night Parade and have now been reincarnated and are again gathering at Maison de Ayakashi. In a way, they are repeating what happened before, with Ririchiyo moving to Maison de Ayakashi and meeting Soushi, but there are differences that make it not exactly the same. Everyone but Soushi, Ririchiyo and Watanuki remember their previous lives, until Kagerou shocks Ririchiyo into remembering. After that, she is able to come to terms with the Soushi of “before” dying.

I think this may be the point where the story really starts going. The Night Parade is still out there and now that Ririchiyo has accepted the past, I think they can all begin the real fight.

Inu x Boku SS Volumes 3 & 4

*** MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS IF YOU HAVEN’T READ PREVIOUS VOLUMES ***

Summainu x boku 3ry (from Goodreads): The residents of Ayakashi Hall decide to make a time capsule and bury it on the grounds, so everyone writes letters to their “future selves” to be included within. As Ririchiyo composes her letter, she reflects on her time with Soushi, realizing how much she has grown with the fox at her side. But when those heartfelt feelings are accidentally delivered not to her future self but to Soushi, Ririchiyo’s budding social skills will be put to the test! Is she ready for a face-to-face confession of her true feelings?!

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Volume 3 begins with the residents of Ayakashi Hall starting a time capsule. Ririchiyo, trying to be more social, decides to participate, but accidentally mixes up her letter to her future self with one meant for Soushi. Since this letter reveals that Ririchiyo wants “to remain by his side” she immediately freaks out when she learns that he has read it and disappears to hide in a park. Of course, Soushi finds her and the two share a very romantic moment when their feelings for one another are revealed. This was my favorite scene in this series so far. When Ririchiyo comes out of her hiding place and tells Soushi that she loves him, the look on his face is almost heartbreaking. Likely that was the first time he’d ever heard anyone say that to him. The moment they share is lovely, but also funny and a bit awkward as a few kids at the park see them share their first kiss.

The rest of the volume is somewhat silly. Kagerou shows up from time to time, bringing people inappropriate souvenirs from wherever he has been and playing pranks on the residents in the form of signs posted around the building telling them to do this like speaking in a confrontational manner to one another.

This volume isn’t all fun and games though. There are moments when we get a hint of darker things to come.

inu x boku 4Summary: When Ririchiyo returns home for the New Year’s festivities, she is hesitant to admit to her family that her bodyguard is also her boyfriend. Over the past several months, the other supernatural boarders at Ayakashi Hall have become more like a real family to her than any she has ever known. Never have these bonds been more evident than when danger threatens one of her new friends…

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New Year’s has arrived, the yearly cleaning has been completed and Ririchiyo is visiting her family, along with Soushi, when she is summoned by Shimon Satorigahara, a sort of elder for the community of supernatural throwbacks. While still away from Maison de Ayakashi, Ririchiyo is notified that Carta has been attached by another supernatural creature. After being in a coma for several months, Carta suddenly wakes up and wanders off to a park, where she transforms and can’t change back. A battle soon begins with Mikoto Inugami and his Night Parade!

The ending of this volume was very confusing. It seems to have come full circle and thus ended the prologue of the story, or so says the end of the volume.

Well, onto volume 5 to figure out what is going on.

Inu x Boku SS – Volumes 1 & 2

inu x boku 1Summary (from Goodreads): The elite and beautiful Ririchiyo Shirakiin has a bad habit–she can’t help but lash out at people with her vicious tongue, all while hiding behind a mask of haughty cool. This attitude has a lot to do with people minding her business because of the Shirakiin family name, but it troubles Ririchiyo to no end. In search of independence and solitude, she moves to the Maison de Ayakashi, an apartment building full of wealthy tenants and with its own Secret Service. Ririchiyo is eager to be alone, but upon her arrival, she is greeted by Soushi, an SS agent arranged for her by her parents. Ririchiyo tries to turn Soushi away, but Soushi’s dogged devotion to his new mistress will not be deterred. The threat against the residents of the Maison de Ayakashi are not to be taken lightly, after all. And despite his puppy-like demeanor, Soushi is not to be trifled with either…

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Maison de Ayakashi is the home of a certain type of people. Everyone who lives and works there is a genetic throwback of an Ayakashi (or demon) ancestor. Because of this, they are raised very differently than any other children. Often not even knowing their own parents. As a result, Ririchiyo Shirakiin has a “bad habit.” She often lashes out and says hurtful things while hiding being a haughty mask. Ririchiyo is not actually this kind of person and feels terrible after saying hurtful things. She moves to Maison de Ayakashi in order to be alone until she can fix this bad habit. Enter Soushi Miketsukami, a Secret Service agent who professes utter devotion to Ririchiyo and claims that his only reason for living is to protect and care for her. Though she tries to dismiss him from her service, it soon become apparent that Soushi is very good at manipulation and continues to stay by Ririchiyo’s side.

In volume 1 we are introduced to some of the other residents of Maison de Ayakashi, including a former neighbor of Ririchiyo’s, Renshou Sorinozuka, his SS agent, Nobara Yukinokouji, and other resident and SS agent Karuta Roromiya. Near the end of the volume we are also introduced to Banri Watanuki and his SS agent, Zange Natsume.

As far as first volumes go, I think this was a good start to a series. The mangaka knew the series would continue so this doesn’t feel like a manga where possible continuation was up in the air. Ririchiyo is an interesting character with a world of potential for growth. We don’t find out too much about other characters in this volume, but trying to cram much more into this volume would have been too much anyway. This manga is really about Ririchiyo, her relationship with Soushi and how she grows as a person and learns to truly be herself with others.

inu x boku 2Volume 2 

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Volume 2 begins with Ririchiyo, Watanuki and Roromiya back in school. We get to see more of Roromiya and her strange behavior as well as Watanuki acting like a self professed delinquent.  Despite her continued bad habit, Ririchiyo is draw into a little circle of friends by Roromiya and experiences for the first time what it is like to have actual friends.

A bit later in the volume, we are introduced to Kagerou Shoukiin, Ririchiyo’s finace (as arranged by their families) and Soushi’s former “master.” Kagerou is my least favorite character. He divides everyone and everything into S & M (Sadist and masochist) and treats people like they are his slaves.

As the volume progresses, we learn all about Soushi’s past and why he is so devoted to Ririchiyo.

I give each volume 3/5 stars.

Have you read this series? What do you think of it? Share in the comments!