Lenni Reviews: “Crazy Food Truck” Vol. 1, by Rokurou Ogaki

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

A food truck owner named Gordon laments his lack of customers in the apocalyptic landscape around him. While changing locations, he finds a naked woman sleeping in the middle of the road. When he takes her in, an armed militia is hunting her down.

This is an interesting way to tell a post-apocalyptic story. Gordon’s a classic grumpy protagonist with a secret and Arisa is the one to come into his life to give him something to care about again. With humor and some cool action, this is a fun volume and is perfectly paced to make me want to the next one. 3.9 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Mao” Vol. 5, Rumiko Takahashi

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

More people from Mao’s past confront him in the present while Byoki is able to follow Nanoka to modern day.

This volume is bringing every one together so we almost have a complete backstory on what went down with Mao. Byoki clearly has some major keys to the puzzle but in the meantime, this volume has a fast pace and we get a lot of information. None of it feels like an info dump since the characters are so interesting and fun to experience on the page. I do wonder how the past and modern worlds will play into each other but we shall see. 4.7 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: “Ragna Crimson” Vol. 3, by Daiki Kobayashi

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

Ragna and Crimson are hunting Ultimatia, the Winged Monarch with Crimson giving strict orders to follow her plans but will Ragna’s powerful hatred for dragons ruin everything? Meanwhile, hunter Leonica takes up her sword again.

While I like this series and the characters, I’m kinda waiting for the point. Crimson’s chuckling and mustache twirling were intriguing before but I’d like it to start paying off. I just didn’t feel like we made any progress towards whatever Crimson’s penultimate goal is in this volume. It’s still entertaining with some great character moments to keep things lively but I’d like things to move forward. 3.7 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Mao” Vol 5, by Rumiko Takahashi

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

This volume dives into Mao’s past and the other people who trained with him to become exorcists, but after all these years, they should have been dead. We also get more information about Nanoka, who travels home with an unexpected and dangerous visitor.

This is a packed volume. So much happens and we get so much information but nothing feels rushed or crammed. Its perfectly paced to tell the story, move things forward, and still be exciting. I don’t want to spoil anything so I won’t go into too  much detail but I will say Byoki has some secrets and there’s something up with his connection to Mao. I can’t wait to see what happens next! 5 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Fist of the North Star” Vol. 4, by Buronson & Tetsuo Hara

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

Ken is one of four who studied Hokuto Shinken and his older brother, Jagi, is now a vicious warlord impersonating Ken in an attempt to ruin his reputation. Ken goes on a journey to defeat Jagi and repair his good name.

I keep thinking Mamiya is going to do something in the plot other than swoon over Ken but unfortunately, no. She’s a good character and I’d like to see her bravery and ingenuity do more than have her end up as a hostage. But other than that, Ken and his brothers are a cool part of this story and the plot takes turns I did not expect, but it worked for me. Jagi is wrapped up quick and we move on to Toki, who I am much more curious about. This volume ends on a cliffhanger so, we’ll have to wait and see what his deal is. 4 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “I Am a Cat Barista” Vol. 1, by Hiro Maijima

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Instead of a traditional cat café, this manga has a supernatural café run by an actual cat.

If you remember way… WAAAAAYY back with Pet Shop of Horrors, this has the same vibe of the owner having the ability to give his patrons exactly what they need. But this series isn’t a horror, it’s a light, slice of life, soothing read with some fantasy elements. If you’re looking for something breezy and positive with some beautiful looking food, this is a great read.

The thirst trap of the anthropomorphic cat at the end was confusing, though… 5 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Levius/est” Vol. 9, by Haruhisa Nakata

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

This summary is a spoiler.

Levius has defeated Oliver and is now Champion, with all the complications and dangers that comes with it. New foes and obstacles come to light making Levius’ life more perilous than before.

This took a strange turn but I find it interesting. If this story was going to continue, it had to be about more than just this tournament and Levius is more of a brawler. His character has space to grow with the narrative that’s unfolding. 3.6 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Fist of the North Star” Vol. 3, by Buronson & Tetsuo Hara

 

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

While we know Ken as a master of Hokuto Shinken, he is not the only one with some powerful martial arts skills. Rei, a master of Nanto Suichoken, is searching for his sister who has been kidnapped by a gang called the Fangs, and teams up with Ken to find her.

Despite a disappointing feeling regarding the few female characters for me to latch on to (I know that’s not the point of this series but still), Ken’s journey is dated but interesting. You can tell this is series is old and it may be some nostalgia creeping in but I’m enjoying this. I wonder what younger readers would think about this series. 4 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Mao” Vol. 2, by Rumiko Takahashi

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

After the story of Priestess Shoko and her prediction of the end of the world, Nanoka is doing research on the accident that killed her parents and how it connects to the portal she is using to travel through space and time. She knows something isn’t quite right at home.

I can tell this is starting to get dark and I’m here for it. I know something up with those shakes she’s forced to drink and those powers she has. And not to be forgotten, Mao is dealing with not being able to heal as well but still has to fight some creepy blood drinking nun demon things so, I can’t wait to see how this affects his mission to defeat the demon that cursed him. I do wonder if this is going to get as dark as the Mermaid Saga or try to retain some lightheartedness as the series progresses. 4.5 out of 5.

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