Lenni Reviews: “Thus Spoke Rohan Kishibe” Vol. 1 by Hirohiko Araki

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

In this spin-off from Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure, manga artist Rohan Kishibe stumbles into the wrong side of a confessional and hears the confession of a stranger who went through some insane supernatural events, leading to an even stranger adventure to find more inspiration for his art.

This was a fun read despite the fact I don’t know a single thing about the original series. I don’t know if it’s supposed to be so bonkers and over the top but it absolutely is. I do feel like I’m missing something since I wasn’t ever interested in the original series but I guess I’ll have to check it out. This was cool but confusingly insane. 3.5 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Komi Can’t Communicate” Vol. 20, by Tomohito Oda

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

Komi’s, Tadano, and their friends go on a skiing trip but unforeseen events, Tadano and Manbagi get left behind at a rest stop and have no place to stay. They end up at a hotel with only one bed available. There is also a story to parallel this where Komi’s parents as teenagers go on a ski trip.

Although the premise implies a bunch of awkward romantic shenanigans, this volume keeps it’s lighthearted, almost too pure for this world tone. It may not be believable for everyone to be so nice all the time but it works so well here and I’d like it to stay that way. I don’t want this series to end up drowning in too much angst. It’s like a precious innocent that needs to be protected. 4 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “My Boy” Vol. 3 by Hitomi Takano

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Satoko finally meets Mashuu’s father after he finds them practicing late at night. She does admit to him that she’s been training him since she knows about soccer but as for the other activities they do together, she kept them secret from him.

Again, as the reader, we’re lead to believe Satoko’s intentions are innocent but yeah, I can understand why lying makes her look worse in the father’s eyes. Mashuu is a very young buy and he’s right to protect his son from someone who is being deceptive. I’m still not understanding why this is so controversial. Seems like a clear cut misunderstanding at this point, but again, this could get very dark. 4 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Perfect World” Vol. 7 by Rei Aruga

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Tsugumi and Itsuki have managed to work well together on the project to make a barrier free house for their friends. Without the pressure of being in a relationship, it seems easier for them to get along. But after the project is complete, an earthquake rocks the city and Itsuki is all alone.

With the earthquake, this series gives the story a chance to show how a disabled person would have to handle a disaster. There are considerations not taken in to account in generic plans, even something as simple as access to a bathroom and space to use the wheelchair in an emergency shelter. I’d never even thought of that. When you think of emergency shelters, they’re packed with people and cots; no space for someone in a chair to maneuver. Romantic drama aside, this series is a great way to expose  more people to what disable people need to exist in the world along side them. 5 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “The Pass” by Espé & J.T. Mahany

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*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review. Trigger warning for childhood disease.

Camille and Bastien just had their second child and are of course overjoyed at the new arrival. But as time goes on, they discover the baby has severe heart defects and has to go through a long series of medical treatments.

Based on real events, this graphic novel shows the parents desperately trying to find solutions and the strain it has on their marriage, their first child, and even their grand parents. The art is gorgeous, especially when the parents hear what’s wrong and the doctors are describing what needs to be done and the risks. It’s overall hopeful since everyone tries their best to go through this painful and frightening situation. 4 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Orochi: The Perfect Edition” Vol. 2, by Kazuo Umezz

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

This volume contains three stories:

  1. Prodigy: Orochi follows a baby through his life to see how things will turn out and try to help him.
  2. Home: Orochi goes with a man who left his home village and returns after many years.
  3. Key: Orochi gets a new apartment to observe the people who live there.

While these premises seem simple, Umezz makes each one disturbing. This has such a Tales from the Crypt vibe and I love it. The second story has to be based on that Twilight Zone episode with the evil boy with powers and the third is a play on The Boy Who Cried Wolf. These are not criticisms, they’re cool retellings with their own style. This collection is good even though there’s some clunky dialog here and there. 4.5 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Perfect World” Vol. 5, by Rie Aruga

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While Tsumugi is back home helping to take care of her sick father, she meets Kaede and her boyfriend Keigo. They want to get married but Keigo wants to build Kaede a barrier free house, as Kaede is in a wheelchair. Despite their past relationship, Tsumugi connects them with Ikeda who inexplicably turns the job down.

I love how much perspective we get from the disabled characters. It’s so important to see the myriad of reasons why someone could need a wheelchair and how hard it is to know you won’t get better. All the help you’re getting feels hopeless and you want to give up. This series oozes with empathy and care. I highly recommend it. 5 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “The Elusive Samurai” Vol. 1, by Yūsei Matsui

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

Hojo Tokiyuki is the last survivor of his family, the Kamakura shogunate, after they were betrayed and slaughtered. Along with other survivors or the massacre, Hojo goes on a journey to train and become strong enough to reclaim the throne.

Don’t let the cutesy art fool you. This is bloody and the art can make the characters look distorted and scary when it needs to. That being said, this is one hello of a start for a series. Hojo is young but strong and you get the sense of how strong he will become.

It feels a little rushed and the priest character is teetering closer to annoying than quirky. I wouldn’t complain if he was reigned it. A LOT.

This is focused more on action so we haven’t gotten attached to anyone more than initial interest so far but I do want to continue to the next volume. 3.9 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Perfect World” Vol. 4, by Rie Aruga

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Itsuki feels he can’t be a burden to Tsugumi and breaks up with her, allowing Koreda to swoop in as her support. But Tsugumi can’t seem to catch a break as she must leave Tokyo and go back to her parents due to a medical emergency.

Geez, just throw everything at this poor woman all at once. But, this volume shows how strong she is and Tsugumi keeps moving forward and doing what she needs to do. I think Koreda is being an opportunist no matter how nice he’s being. In my opinion, he should have let Tsugumi process the breakup before immediately taking Itsuki’s place. But, nobody is really terrible in this series. Even Tsugumi’s parents are sympathetic in their own way. I think things are portrayed realistically and that’s important for this subject matter. 4.9 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Gigant” Vol. 3, by Hiroya Oku

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With Rei in danger, Chiho decides to come out of hiding and defeat the creature attacking Tokyo. Now the connection between the E.T.E. website and these insane events are public knowledge as well as Chiho’s identity and abilities.

This series is bananas. It’s madness and I’m somehow completely okay with that. I’m invested in Chiho and how she’s going to factor into these weird requests to the E.T.E. and we see there are other giants like her in other countries. So, there’s some moves happening that we don’t know about and I am here for the ride! 3.7 out of 5 because we’re getting more sex scenes than I’d like. I kept skipping them to get back to the story.

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