Lenni Reviews: “BEASTARS” Vol. 19, by Paru Itagaki

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*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review.

Louis and Legoshi meet up with Louis’ old friends from the black market, Kyu and San. Upon hearing what their plans are, Kyu begins training Louis to face Melon. Meanwhile, Yahya meets up with Gosha to talk about Legoshi’s upcoming fight with Melon.

This is one of those volumes where I feel there wasn’t much forward motion forward in the plot but it was still entertaining and scary. They stories in some parts highlights the paper thin civility of the society in this world. Legoshi is darling in his idealism but even aside for the Black Market, the whole society feels like it could implode at any point. Legoshi challenging Melon is more like this hole the mask of civility isn’t broken and everyone becomes like Melon.

Or I’m reading too much into it and it was just a cool read. 4 out of 5. 

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Lenni Reviews: “BEASTARS” Vol. 18, by Paru Itagaki

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*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review.

This volume gives us some insight into Legoshi’s friendship with Jack and how it started when Legoshi starts at Cherryton Academy after his mother dies; explaining why Jack and other canine students are so close to Legoshi. In addition, Louis returns to the now abandoned market where he was sold to find his former cellmates; San and Kyu, are still alive and living in the Black Market.

Legoshi is still an idealistic beast who manages to impress the more disillusioned around him. He’s just so earnest about wanting a better future it makes badass  characters like Kyu ready to help him in the inevitable showdown with the psycho Melon. Much like with the Riz arch, the story is taking it’s time getting there. It doesn’t feel like an artificial build up or give a dragged out feeling. We’re just getting all the pieces in place. I still love this series. 5 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “BEASTARS” Vol. 17, by Paru Itagaki

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* This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review.

In this volume, Legoshi and Louis go into a secret group called the Kopi Luwak, who researches mixed beasts in order to track down Melon. They don’t realize Melon is closer than they thought as he is one of Haru’s teachers in college.

The contrast between a mixed beast like Melon versus a much more sane Legoshi is blatantly obvious. It’s easier for Legoshi to blend in while Melon’s mixed characteristics need to be hidden for him to have that fake normalcy of his day job. As sad as his back story is, it’s clear it is NOT a good thing for Melon to take an interest in you. 5 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Beastars” Vol. 15, by Paru Itagaki

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*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review.

In this volume, while we do get some wholesome moments where Legoshi meets Haru’s parents, we also get to know Melon; a gazelle/leopard hybrid who is a gleeful poacher. Yaha wants Legoshi to help hunt Melon down.

We also meet Utsugi, a jackal who refuses to eat meat and uses alcholo (and Eyes Wide Shut type parties) to supress her desires for meat.

If you’re underage, don’t watch that movie…

It’s cute to see how Legoshi is still so innocent that the mask sex drug parties embarrass him. I adore how this series keeps enough of this innocence without him being overly naive. He’s aware how serious things are around him and is trying to still be himself; not walking around with blinders on thinking everything is sunshine and roses.

Oh, and spoiler alert… Spoiler…

Still a spoiler…

We get to meet Legoshi’s mom.

4.9 out of 5. Almost perfect but I wanted more of Melon and the threat he poses.

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Lenni Reviews: “Beastars” vol 14 by Paru Itagaki

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*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review.

Still living on his own, Legoshi is approached by the current Beastar, Yahya, to speak about crime after he busted some drug dealers. Yahya is intrigued by Legoshi and wants to see how much like his grandfather, Gosha, as a way to get revenge on his old friend for picking his family over Yahya when they were younger.

I’m so used to seeing Legoshi as this affable, idealistic guy that it’s shocking when he gets intense. I won’t spoil anything but it’s such a contrast to the heartwarming way he bonds with his canine friends. And we get a new villain that I can’t wait to see in the next volume. 5 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Beastars” Vol. 13, by Paru Itagaki

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*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review.

After being arrested, Legoshi is no longer allowed to attend school. He finds a job in a noodle shop and is visited by his grandfather Gosha; a Komodo Dragon. There is also a new drug on the streets and Gosha has history with the current Beastar.

In this volume, we are also introduced to The Marines; water animals with even their own separate language and culture. Legoshi lives in the same apartment as a spotted seal who is trying to learn more about land animals. To be honest, I’d never given any thought to marine life. Incorporating them is cool and I like how Itagaki is using the fact Legoshi now lives on his own to introduce all these new concepts and characters. Legoshi’s neighbors are a trip. I love watching them interact and play off one another. And of course Legoshi is still the type to want to be a hero so he runs afoul of those drug dealers. I hope he never changes. 5 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Beastars” vol 12, by Paru Itagaki

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Now that the fight with Riz is over, Legoshi now has a criminal record and has serious concerns about what the future will hold for him. He works on learning to live on his own while we meet the current Beastar, Yaha, who has an interest in Legoshi. We are also introduced to a sheep named Seven who likes to tempt fate by riding on the train in the interspecies car instead of the safer herbivore cars. 

This volume jumps around a lot, even getting to meet Legoshi’s grandfather, Gosha. It seems to be getting some players on the board into place for a larger story to come. It isn’t boring, but clearly, a setup volume that may feel like filler to some. 3.7 out of 5.

 

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Lenni Reviews: “Beastars” Vol. 11, by Paru Itagaki

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*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review.

I trust this isn’t spoilers for you at this point so, in this volume, Legoshi and Riz have their final showdown and Legoshi will have to pray the training he’s been though will help him stand up to a bear twice his size.

I like the way this panned out. It makes sense given the personalities and characters involved in all this mess. I also have to assume it’s not spoilery to say, it’s about damn TIME the police got involved. A student was murdered and eaten! I’m shocked Legoshi didn’t have regular run ins with a police investigation in progress. That would have made for some interesting conflict… But, as is, this was good. Great art in the fight scenes and even in battle, Legoshi is his goofy self. 5 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Beastars” Vol 10, by Paru Itagaki

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*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review.

In this volume, we catch up with Louis, now with the Shishigumi for four months, follow up with Kibi, the anteater who was maimed in the previous volume, and Legoshi is trying to get more in tune with his carnivore nature. There are also some side stories to give more context to other characters like Pina and Gohin.

I still love how Legoshi has this grans mission he’s seriously training for yet still manages to be a goofball with high ideals but little experience (since these characters are still technically teenagers). I’d be disappointed with the time spent away from his story but the other characters are also interesting and unique. Still one of my favorite series I’m reading these days. 5 out of 5.

 

 

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Lenni Reviews: “Beastars” Vol. 9 by Paru Itagaki

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*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review.

While this volume starts with the mundane Winter Performance for the Drama Club. But the real meat (no pun intended) of this volume is Legoshi finding out who killed Tem WAY back in volume 1. Which, honestly, I thought they forgot about.

Somehow, I expected the reveal of Tem’s murderer to take longer and be a big battle but I respect how this volume handled it. It makes sense that Legoshi would have to train hard to face a killer and since his side gig helping Dr. Gohin is making him stronger, it makes sense that he would have to keep doing that in order to get his skills up. It also makes sense that Legoshi’s little side job would land him in Louis’ path. It was great to see them interact again.

Juno also got some focus with her bonding with Haru for a bit of girl time. And I need to perhaps spoil a bit here when I flat out rejoice in the discarding of the generic “mean girl” trope and they come to terms. It’s so refreshing.

Yet again, I love this series and I can’t wait for more. 5 out of 5.

 

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