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: “Mieruko-chan” Vol 1, by Tomoki Izumi

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High schooler Mieruko is cursed with seeing horrible, twisted spirits all around her; but no one else can. She just does her best to ignore them while also protecting her best friend from these things.

This manga is cute but oddly fanservicey with all the up skirt and cleavage shots. It’s really sweet how Mieruko just want to protect the people she cares about as best she can without revealing she can see ghosts. I won’t spoil it but there’s a story about a kitty that sold me on this series. All the stories are quick one shots so I’m wondering how this will progress and if there will be an overarching story line. 4 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Lovesickness” a Junji Ito Story Collection

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

The collection of horror stories really shows Ito’s range as to what he can make horrible. I think my favorite is “The Mansion of Phantom Pain” but the entire saga of the cover character “Beautiful Boy and the Crossroads” is good, too. Super gory in this case, so be aware of that if gore is not your thing.

This is a solid offering with another funny story at the end featuring a fake poop. The volume leaves you with a laugh if you need to recover from the rest of the stories. 5 out of 5.

 

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Lenni Reviews: “Kick-Ass: The New Girl” Book Two by Steve Niles & Marcelo Frusín

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Patience is expanding her reach, taking down or absorbing increasingly dangerous criminal organizations. Doing good with her money, she also has people working with her and using her money to help her community. But Patience has made dangerous enemies who are not happy with her meddling.

This volume goes more into the real issues dealing with a double life and how it affects her family. While I enjoy the idea of Patience leading this gang to do some good, I don’t feel like this idea is explored. It’s just told to us while the meat of this is the other cartels and mob trying to taker her down. Probably to keep up with the requisite need for tons of violence. 3 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Kick-Ass: The New Girl” Book One by Mark Millar & John Romita Jr.

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Veteran and single mom Patience has to find a way to make ends meet. When she runs into and takes down some criminals, she decides to make pummeling bad guys a lucrative sidehustle.

This is an interesting way to continue the Kick-Ass name with a fresh new character. I like that it’s someone familiar with combat and planning. Patience is smart, capable, and has a LOT to lose if something happens to her on the job or if she’s found out. It’s also much less negative than it’s predecessor. There are likable people to follow and I’m interested in what happens next. 4 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “The Stars of History: Marilyn Monroe” by Bernard Swysen, Paty Christian

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

This graphic novel is a fast-paced biography of Marilyn Monroe starting from birth until her untimely death.

And by fast-paced, I mean very, VERY rushed account of her life. I like the art style for the expressive faces but the body proportions are iffy in places; like all of a sudden someone will have a HUGE behind or look like their back is broken. Unlike something like Irena – a biographical comic that is entertaining and detailed enough to act as a jumping-off point for further research – this book is more like a cliff-notes of a real biography. It’s ok but superficial. I think it should have taken more time to really dig deep but maybe they had page constraints. 3.5 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Paris 2119” by Zep & Dominique Bertail

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

Set in the far future, Tristan Keys is one of the few who still looks back on the past with nostalgia; avoiding teleportation devices in favor of walking and loving printed books. But when he see what appears to be a duplicate of his current boss wandering around insane, he is sucked into a noir-ish mystery witn dark sci-fi elements.

I like the concept and Tristan is an interesting character to follow through this adventure but it just… Stops. I expected more; maybe taking down the big baddie or exposing a really dangerous secret but, nope. It just ends. It felt too anticlimactic for me to give this more than a 3 out of 5, even if the art is really good.

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Lenni Reviews: “Elfen Lied Omnibus” Volume 4 by Lynn Okamoto

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In the final volume, Lucy makes her final stand against the organization hunting her and putting her friends in danger.

Well, everything just goes completely sideways in this volume. It’s not the ending I expected but it seemed fittingly bombastic and touching. I feel it was well worth my time getting through four huge books. The plot got fleshed out with the Diclonii vs Humans and Lucy wanting a normal life. But of course, if you are familiar at all with this series’ reputation, you may want to avoid it due to the high body count, nudity, and gore. 4 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Komi Can’t Communicate” Vol. 11 by Tomohito Oda

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

In this volume:

  • Komi goes on a family vacation and her family runs into Tadano’s
  • Side story with Shouske – Komi’s brother.
  • Another side story about a bunch of first-years who mistake Katai for Komi and want to fight her thinking she’s as tough as Katai appears.
  • Komi has some girl talk with Kato.
  • A fashion contest.
  • And another side story featuring Komi’s parents as teens.

This series continues to be as adorable as ever but with Tadano and Komi getting closer, I wish there was more focus on them and the larger narrative goal of Komi making more friends. But, the side stories are funny and entertaining so this volume is forgiven. 4.9 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “My Broken Mariko” by Waka Hirako

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Tomoyo Shiino’s best friend Mariko had a rough life of abuse and depression but was always able to rely on Shiino’s support. Shiino has a crappy job and is going through a rough patch and hadn’t heard from her friend in awhile. Until Shiino unfortunately hears of her friend’s suicide. Bravely saving her ashes from her abusive father, Shiino goes to take a trip with her friend one last time.

There is also a side story about Yiska, a young Native man trying to cross the border and ends up meeting a man fleeing from his old gang.

The main story is really sad. Watching a normally snarky Shiino struggle to deal with her best friend’s death is very real; alternating between shock, anger, humor, and pain in a way you can’t help but empathize with. Of course if this subject matter is triggering for you, I’d avoid this book but if not, it’s moving and in the end I’m glad I read it. 4.5 out of 5.

 

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