Lenni Reviews: “Junji Ito’s Cat Diary: Yon & Mu” by Junji Ito

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This manga has real life stories about Ito becoming a cat owner against his will because his fiancée wants them.

This is really funny, especially coming from Ito. If you’ve read this blog for awhile, you know I’m a fan of his work so it comes from a place of love and experience when I say it’s fucking hilarious and terrifying to see Ito’s style in every day situations. This was fun to read and if you’re a cat owner, there are some familiar situations here. 4 out of 5.

 

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Lenni Reviews: “Komi Can’t Communicate” Vol. 15, by Tomohito Oda

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

In this volume we meet a new character, Isagi, who wants to be Student Counsel President but is very blunt, doesn’t like people, and does not like to be touched. But Komi has been tapped to be her campaign representative.

I’m gonna start calling Komi by her first name, Shoko, for awhile because her other family members are appearing more often in these volumes and it can get confusing if you’re reading the reviews.

Watching Shoko and Isagi try to win this election is funny. Two people with communication issues trying to win over the school will have some obvious setbacks. In addition, there’s a dinner party at the Komi household where it’s clear Shoko’s feelings for Tadano. How this will factor in with Rumiko having a crush on him as well, we’ll have to wait and see. 5 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “The Summer of You” Vol 1, by Nagisa Furuya

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Wataru Toda loves movies. While browsing the DVD racks in a store one day, he meets a classmate Chiharu Saeki; and they bond over a mutual love of films. But when Saeki confesses he has a crush on Toda, the dynamic changes and Toda has to sort out his feelings while the pair are on a summer mission to visit filming locations of the movies they love.

This is one of those manga that’s drawn so soft, you can just cozy up to it and read it with a smile. It’s pretty low angst and our main pair are really sweet. It’s a bit of a slice of life manga and isn’t graphic at all. If a teen wanted some LGBT friendly stories to read, this is a sweet one. If there is more, I wouls want to read it. 3.9 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “I Think Our Son Is Gay” Vol 1, by Okura

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Tomoko has noticed her son, Hiroki, is acting strangely. He’s clearly in love and interested in romance but hesitant to say who it is. But Hiroki is terrible at keeping secrets and even worse at lying so Tomoko is sure her son’s crush is another boy.

This is right up there with Komi in levels of adorable. Hiroki is the worst liar but he’s a good kid and his mom is clearly just letting him find his own way and supporting him when he needs it. The art is simple but expressive and the characters are established well with only a few glances or words. If you’re in the market for some clean, LGBTQ, slice of life content, this is a sweet read. 4 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Komi Can’t Communicate” Vol. 13, by Tomohito Oda

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

In this volume, Komi and Rei spend some time together, forming a bond that breaks through Rei’s initial standoffishness. As it’s becoming easier for Komi to make friends, Tadano notices she doesn’t need to rely on him as much, making him wistful about her progress.

It’s nice to see the development between Komi and Rei and the closeness of the others in the group. This volume is on point with the humor and characterization making it really fun to read. I am wondering how new people will fit into the group but that remains to be seen. 5 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Beast Complex” Vol. 1, by Paru Itagaki

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

Taking advantage of the wealth of stories this universe has to offer, Beast Complex is a collection of stories featuring various stories of different types of beasts.

We would want to assume that Legoshi is unique in his relation to herbivores in the main series, this collection really brings to light what a delicate balance is in place and how different types of beasts handle the need to be civilized when your instincts tell you otherwise. It was nice to live in this world for awhile without the threat of a murderer hiding in the wings; just normal day to day stories from kids as friends, to drama between hosts of a cooking show. If you’re even a casual fan of Beastars, this is worth checking out! 4.7 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Komi Can’t Communicate” Vol. 12 by Tomohito Oda

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

Instead of listing the events, I’ll just do a quick overview.

We have a new teacher introduced, go through exams and summer vacation, and some interesting backstory with Komi’s mom and dad when they were teenagers. We also have a new kid staying with Komi’s family, Rei, for a while since her mom is in town for work.

The stories seem to be getting shorter; very rapid fire. But it still keeps up the same light-hearted, cute, slice of life nature of the rest of the series. Right now, it’s still cute that people mistake Komi’s silence for standoffishness or toughness but I can see this getting old soon. I mean, it’s great to see people warm up to Komi but I would like to see more development. But, if you’re a big reader like I am, this series and those like it are a great break from darker material. 4.9 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: “Saint Young Men” vol. 4, by Hikaru Nakamura

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In this volume, we meet their moms as the story continues to operate on the concept that all religions are real and the deities can interact with each other on and off Earth with humans.

This series is still decent and has some cute moments but by the middle of this, I was just flipping through the pages. My brain just checked out. I even restarted this book 3 times and still. There just wasn’t enough here to keep me interested and I couldn’t get into it. Perhaps I’ll give this series a revisit later on but for now, I’m gonna drop it. 2.7 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “The Unknown” by Anna Sommer

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*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review and is recommended for mature readers.

This graphic novel tells the story of Helen, who finds a baby in her clothing store dressing room as well as Vicky, who is having an affair with one of her teachers. Their very different lives converge in unexpected ways.

This is a strange little book. It never does quite what you expect and is about as random and twisting as real life can be sometimes. Helen is a bit of a ditz but she’s sweet and Vicky is clearly a young woman with some issues to work through before she really grows up. It’s alright but kind of a spark that fades away fast. 3 out of 5.

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