oyceter: man*ga [mahng' guh] n. Japanese comics. synonym: CRACK (manga is crack)
Wow, it's been a while since I've written this up.

Spoilers are confused )

Please no spoilers for xxxHolic unless it's under <span style="color:#333;background-color:#333">spoiler code</span>.
oyceter: man*ga [mahng' guh] n. Japanese comics. synonym: CRACK (manga is crack)
Spoilers )

Please no spoilers for xxxHolic unless it's under <span style="color:#333;background-color:#333">spoiler code</span>.
oyceter: man*ga [mahng' guh] n. Japanese comics. synonym: CRACK (manga is crack)
This is why I don't make New Year's Resolutions to read less manga: the statistics would come out the next year, and I would laugh in my own face. The scary thing is this list doesn't include random scanlations or recent chapters of series I follow, and it's still at 275 volumes!

As usual, these are my favorite things read this year, not published this year. I'm also keeping manga separate from comics; this is an entirely arbitrary distinction and depends not only on the paper size of the book, but also whether or not I feel it's going for the manga feel or not. For 2008, I'm going to stick everything together as "sequential art," but since my spreadsheet from last year was set up to separate manga from everything else, no such luck for now.

Sadly, I have skimpy numbers for manhwa, which I am going to try to remedy this year. I was surprised to see I only have two repeats from last year (Emma and Cain Saga/Godchild), though I have four author repeats (Mori Kaoru, Minekura Kazuya, Mizushiro Setona and Yuki Kaori). I liked my runner ups much more than I liked my runner ups from last year, though that's mainly because I've been reading more manga. I know, what a shocker.

Continuing series Naruto, Fruits Basket and Saiyuki (including Reload and Gaiden) fell off my list this year. I don't even have Naruto on my list of manga read, but that's largely because I read chapters as they came out. Possibly reading individual chapters instead of volumes of manga dampened my enthusiasm, although I think a larger part of it is because we're stuck in another long fighting arc I don't care much about. I'm still waiting for my favorite characters to get back into action and very sick of Sasuke's angst about twenty volumes ago, thankyouverymuch. I just haven't read any Fruits Basket this year, aside from rereads, and while new volumes of Saiyuki Reload came out this year (most notably the exciting volume 7), they're all volumes I read last year in Japanese.

The only reason Honey and Clover isn't on here is because the first three volumes a) aren't out in the US and b) follow the anime so closely that I can't quite figure out what to say.

I have individual volume write ups linked via tags for the top ten and runners up, but I'm too lazy to link the entire list of stuff I read. Anything without an asterisk has been written up before; check my tags or memories. If you're curious about something I haven't written up, feel free to ask!

Series alphabetized by author.

  1. CLAMP, xxxHolic and Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle )

  2. Higuri You, Cantarella )

  3. Minekura Kazuya, Wild Adapter )

  4. Mizushiro Setona, After School Nightmare )

  5. Mori Kaoru, Emma )

  6. Soryo Fuyumi, Eternal Sabbath )

  7. Urasawa Naoki, Monster and 20th Century Boys )

  8. Urushibara Yuki, Mushishi )

  9. Yazawa Ai, Nana and Tenshi Nanka Ja Nai )

  10. Yuki Kaori, Cain Saga/Godchild )

  11. Yumeka Sumomo, The Day I Became a Butterfly )

Also recommended: Arakawa Hiromu, Fullmetal Alchemist; Svetlana Chmakova, Dramacon; Hayakawa Tomoko, The Wallflower; Ogawa Yayoi, Tramps Like Us; Takeuchi Mick, Her Majesty's Dog; Yoshinaga Fumi, Antique Bakery; Yun Mi-Kyung, Bride of the Water God

Notes )

Total read: 275 (40 rereads)

Complete list of manga read in 2007 )
oyceter: man*ga [mahng' guh] n. Japanese comics. synonym: CRACK (manga is crack)
Look, [livejournal.com profile] rilina! I am caught up again!

Spoilers for all of X and xxxHolic through ch. 143 under the cut.

Spoilers have no words! )
oyceter: man*ga [mahng' guh] n. Japanese comics. synonym: CRACK (manga is crack)
OMG! OMG! Not enough exclamation points in the world!

Massive spoilers )

So much thanks to [livejournal.com profile] rilina for single-handedly getting several people, me included, caught up on this to share in the massive squee!

oyceter: man*ga [mahng' guh] n. Japanese comics. synonym: CRACK (manga is crack)
Er, I read vols. 2-5 nearly two years ago, and only recently picked it up again, so this will be very short on those volumes. Thankfully, I did reread vol. 5.

Syaoran and Sakura continue to be absolutely adorable, and by the time vol. 5 rolls around, the Syaoran-Sakura-Fai-Kurogane-Mokona team have fallen into a rhythm, in which Syaoran is earnest and angsty, Sakura is earnest and adorable, Fai is earnest and somewhat ditzy, Kurogane is gruff but secretly earnest and angsty, and Mokona is just cute and bouncy.

I didn't pick up on most of the xxxHolic references, largely because they're just little blips in the xxxHolic-verse that I didn't much pay attention to.

Tsubasa mostly settles into plot-coupon-esque adventures; Our Brave Heroes fall into a new world, courtesy of Mokona, they look for the feather, they have to defeat someone to win the feather, and then they go on to the next world. There's some villain behind the scenes who also wants the feathers, but not much about him has been revealed yet.

I don't think this will be something that I buy, but it's fun to read and it doesn't tax my brain. I feel like I should be more annoyed by the plot-coupon adventures, but I'm so busy petting the art and looking at the gorgeous linework that I just don't care. Also, did I mention how cute Syaoran and Sakura are?

CLAMP's style has gotten even better over the years, which is something that I didn't even think was possible. I really adore the art in this; it's different from the beautiful black-and-white Art Deco style of xxxHolic, but there's something about the elongated figures with big hands and big feet, the swoops and the curves and the energy of it that I love.

Also, I am a total sucker for the Ashura story (tragic doomed reincarnated love story!), and even though I know having random older CLAMP characters appearing is total fan service, I don't care. I nearly squealed out loud when Syaoran's old teacher appeared.
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Screwy. I think I may have found a new manga series that I desperately want to read, except I cannot buy it right now because manga is still $10/vol. I blame this entirely on [livejournal.com profile] coffee_and_ink.

Anyhow, apparently Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle stars assorted characters from previous CLAMP works, in a completely different time and setting and the like, with many in jokes and whatnot. I was quite glad that the book had little character blurbs for people who showed up, because the only two I recognized were Sorata and Arashi from X (yay! More Arashi!), even though it was just a cameo.

The story takes two characters from Card Captor Sakura (I'm guessing the two main characters), Sakura and Syaoran (pronounced "sha-o-ran"). Sakura is the princess of the Clow kingdom, and Syaoran is only an archaeologist, despite the two being childhood friends. During a dig one day, something tragic happens and Sakura loses her memories, and eventually without regaining them, she will lose her life. Syaoran doesn't know what to do, but he ends up going on a quest to restore her memories by chasing after them in the form of feathers (ergo "Tsubasa" aka "wings"). He's joined by Fai and Kurogane, both of whom I am completely uninterested in so far.

Actually, the only reason I was reading this with such interest was because Syaoran and Sakura are so cute! Just... waaaah! And the bargain that Syaoran struck with Yuuko totally got to me, because I am a sucker for sacrifices like that. Mokona is also cute in that fuzzy animal type way. But I just really want to see what happens next because in [livejournal.com profile] coffee_and_ink's summaries, she mentions a bit of what happens next and the angst that ensues, and I really must read this. Argh. This is evil.

I also really love the art. CLAMP's style has changed! I'm completely not used to this! I still have a conception of CLAMP-art looking much like X -- everyone is overly refined, with thin, fine lines and willowy figures. The characters here still have the semblence of CLAMP characters, particularly in their body build, but CLAMP has done something with the art so that it's blockier and rougher. The lines are thicker and more sketch-like, and the general feeling is something much more dynamic and less overtly beautiful. I really like it. Although the page layouts are still hard for me to make out, especially action sequences, because there's always so much going on in the page. I've always had this trouble with CLAMP though, and with fight sequences in general, so it may just be me.

Hrm. Maybe I shall camp out at Borders more...


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