Welcome to The Anime & Manga Review!
It has been my dream to create a world on TheO where users can go for anime and manga reviews and finally here it is! I plan to make this world an active, exciting and helpful place for learning about and finding entertaining manga and anime to read/watch.

Hey! Did you know I do all kinds of things to make it easy to search specific genres and reviews?
For information on how to search for genre and such things please see my info post!
Its the first post of this world and will help you find your way!

(aka Tsu)

The Necromancer

Hey all! If you haven’t voted yet, please pitch in your opinion on what my “special thank you for 5,000 views review” should be!

Author/artist: Soga Shina

Oh where to start about this review? First off I think a liiiiittle personal background about myself is needed… XD I am a panel geek. Nothing gets me more excited than when a comic book or manga has amazing panel arrangement! (I have mentioned this in the past, but I’ve written a 10 page research paper on the subject)
So needless to say this manga has really cool page layouts. The author really enhances the story through those choices and I love it.

Moving on from my obsession with panels… The story is about a mysterious young man who is a necromancer. Of course there’s a price to be paid for these services, and that just so happens to be three years of a living person. Oh but that’s not all! A resurrected soul’s essence, or “special characteristics” are enhanced through this process and its impossible to predict how much or what will happen. Interesting right?
Like many manga the basic premise itself is fairly simple, but I just adore the bitter sweet stories and the main character (the necromancer) has such a straight forward and sometimes brutal views on death and resurrection that he’s really interesting to learn more about as the series goes on. To top it off, the other main character who is a female cop trying to find some kind of evidence that the necromancer is up to no good, adds a really fun element and lets some of the stories take on mystery element.

Truly though, I must say I really like the art work in this series! This is a horror manga but the actual characters have a very sweet, elegant smoothness to the way they’re drawn. This style with its cute characters and stark black and white contrast makes for a unique look that oddly compliments the horror nature of the series very well. (my friends and I were just talking about sweet and evil things today and decided it’s “swevil” or sweet and evil)

While this is classified as a shounen manga, I think that shoujo fans would really like this one. And of course if you’re into bitter sweet horror stories or want to try something just a little bit different this is the perfect choice. It's a fun read, with some great mysteries and thrills.


ps. Did you know that I actually use the tags and post type to make my reviews easy to find and filter?
Check out how to do this on my info post!

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Manga You Should Definitely Be Reading

The Ongoing Manga You Should Definitely Be Reading

Hello all! Sorry it’s been so very very very long… (Link to why I’ve been insanely busy for those interested) But for the rest of you I’ll sum it up with work… so much work… (Deadlines suck man!) and so this post is coming to you! (Thanks to my needing an excuse to take a break from mindlessly converting footage from an H264 to AppProRes 422)

Anyways, have you been looking for a new good series to get into but just don’t know where to start looking? Well search no more my friend! The answer is upon you!
I have searched the internet for you! Read hundreds of series! All the work has been done! Here are some ongoing manga that you should really already be reading. For this list I have tried to pick a series from every genre so both shoujo and seinen, Josei and shounen, horror and romance, can all find a new series to throw their passion wildly behind! I have also ruled out the popular popular ones that you already know exsist. Although seriously… Attack on Titan is just… so freaking awesome you really should give it a gander if you haven’t already, but that's for another day, today lets take a look at some lesser know gems! (some are more well known than others)

So here’s the results of my digging through the internet and tentacles to find you the good series!
And now onto
Ongoing Manga You Should Definitely Be Reading Already!!!

Author: Miura Tsuina
Artist: Sakurai Gamon

I love this series, I love this series!!! So far it’s a hard hitter that's still fun and exciting! I already talked about this series a bit on Thiefspawn’s world IDefyn (so I’m gonna paraphrase myself a bit)
I love the premise~! Ajin is written 亜人 and translates as something like Sub Human. And yeah that’s what this series is about. There’s this new being called an Ajin that can’t die, nobody quite knows what they are, and there don’t seem to be very many of them. Typically nobody even knows that the person they knew was an ajin until they don’t die when they should have.
And in the first chapter our protagonist meets with an accident… And it’s totally awesome! The characters are brutal in their logic and the art style matches that gritty mood as well. Definitely a worth while action series! Plus the series has been quickly gaining popularity and for a reason! Seinen fans, action fans, don’t miss out!

Koushin Ouji
Author/artist: Kuwahara Souta

So cute. Sooooo very cute! Plus it falls into the Supernatural category, which I am a huuuuge fan of! (I may have been part of a paranormal investigation group back in college) Basically it’s about a demon (the demon prince actually) who has come to our earth in order to collect souls and to discover the secret of the Kuronai, which is a power that will allow him to inherit the throne. There, one thing leads to another… and now he’s living at this very optimistic girls home with her and her grandma. I know that basic plot makes it seem run of the mill, but between an adorable shoujo art style and some genuinely heart felt moments, I think this series stands strong. The love interest has real problems, and the prince has a determination to his duty that lets me buy the “drama of will he collect her soul?” Seriously shoujo fans, why aren’t you already reading this? It’s great so far!

Ansatsu Kyoushitsu
Author/artist: Matsui Yuusei

Ok I already did a full review for this series so I’ll keep it brief. (read the full review for a complete synopsis, and my awesome personality XD) This is currently one of my absolute must read as it updates manga. Its got what I love, action, comedy, and suspension of drama that makes me want to know whats gonna happen next!!!
To boil the plot down, the story follows a trouble class at an elite school that has been selected to assassinate their teacher, who is an alien, who announced he will destroy the world within a year and as proof he can do it he puts a big hole in the moon. As part of a deal with the Japanese government he will be the teacher of a high school class but the students are the ones who have to kill him. Its silly, its sweet, its actiony and I love it! If you dig comedy and action you really should be reading this!

Spirit Circle
Author/artist: Mizukami Satoshi

I don’t curse much, but damn… just this manga… It seems really silly at a glance and the art is cutesy, but I know what to expect from this author. (The author of one of the personal top ten manga I’ve ever read which I reviewed in an earlier post) And what to expect from this series is one that has equal parts fun, cute and truly sweet moments, and brutal, sad and touching moments. And just… damn this manga is shaping up to truly be something great. Again I HATE jumping to conclusions, manga often get ruined by bad endings, but really this is worth a read. This is a story about a middle school boy who is one day confronted by the new transfer girl, and she says she hates him and proceeds to wack him in the face. There he relives a past life and the revelation of an unbreakable reincarnation cycle between him and the girl begins to real itself. Seriously, give it a try! I personally cannot wait to see where is goes! Give it the first two chapters, if you’re anything like me, you’ll be completely hooked.

And since I don’t have any Josei I’m currently reading…

Another shoujo!
Akatsuki No Yona
Author/artist: Kusanagi Mizuho

Anyone remember that “Top Female Leads in Shoujo” review? I totally would have put the lead, Yona, from this series, on that list I had known of her at the time! Such a fun fantasy shoujo! Has that delightful “red haired princess with problems” clique. (Isn’t that such a random clique?! But seriously, I know like. Over 5 manga in that genre) Anyhoo, follows the story of a princess who has to grow stronger as a person and complete a quest in order to reunite the country and regain the thrown. I love it because she does grow as a character and is, I feel, pretty awesome that way. I totally believe her emotions and can relate to them. I don’t even mind that is has a reverse harem (one girl with tons of guys) which usually is a deal breaker for me. It’s just a very interesting story and I want to see what happens next, what more can you ask for?

Anyways, I hope that this list helps you find that new special manga in your heart!
Let me know if you give it a read! I’m always curious to see what other people think!
And in between now and my last post feel free to browse my other entries! Maybe you'll find more than one series to love. ^-^

See you around!

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A Manga Close to My Heart

The Violinist of Hamlin
Watanabe Michiaki

Today I'm sharing a manga series that is near and dear to my heart. The first time I read it my head wasn't in a good space and recently I got some troubling news about one of my cousins, he will be losing his right foot in the near future as a blood vessel in his leg was severely damaged several years back and his foot is now slowly rotting away due to lack of blood, and I thought I'd share with you guys a series that not only puts a smile on my face but I think is well written and drawn!
^-^ After all as my avatar states "Laughter is Healthy"

Ok so as mentioned I wasn't in a happy place when I first read this, nothing serious, but hey everyone has those bad months, and I stumbled upon The Violinist of Hamlin. Also, little fun fact, this is the only series that has made me cry both in laughter and in sadness. Another little fact, this series tends to be a love or hate it series. People either love the off beat humor mixed with amazing action and touching moments and totally unserious ones, and others hate it… a lot!
I am on the love side! ^-^ (I was reading the last chapters at like 3am and into the wee hours of the dawn pacing around my room worried about the characters like they were real people. I was all crying and going "If things can't end happily for them what chance does my life have?!' <--- Waaaaaay being over dramatic. lol My roommate thought I was craaazy) I get very attached to series when I marathon them and since I read this series in an amazing 2 day marathon of barely seeing daylight (or sleeping) I got my emotions all tangled up in the epic story!

Anyways lets get to the nitty gritty, before I ooze too much about why I think think this series is great, and talk about the plot. At its heart Violinist is a Dramedy (comedy drama)
The story follows Hamel a goofy (for lack of a better word) young man and anti hero, with a dark past, as he travels to the Northern kingdom of the Mozoku (the demons). He travels carrying a giant violin which he plays and uses its music to defeat foes. He eventually meets up with Flute and other new friends that will eventually help him on his quest to destroy Kestra the king of the Mozoku. (Kestra's name is a terrible pun for Orchestra and most of the characters are named after an instrument of some kind)

Sounds pretty standard for a shounen series right?
Well in some ways it is. Where this series breaks away to be, in my opinion, one of the best series, is in its character development. All the characters have serious personal flaws. (I've had a friend tell me she hated the main character because he is an ungrateful #@$^@&!.) However, how each character starts off the series with whatever flaws they may have be it selfishness, pride, cowardice, one minded vengeance, or uncertainty just makes how much they change through the course of the series seem so amazing. The author does this so skillfully and slowly you don't even notice it until you're at the end looking back. Unlike in some other series I've read, grudges are not easily let go and sadness not easily lost.
I really buy that these characters could be real people. I buy their emotional struggles, I buy their reasons for over compensating their sad times with humor and I buy their changes and growth as people. At the end Hamel says something that never fails to make my heart melt with how sincere it is. in fact, all the sincere moments just feel all the more impactful due to the way it is.
Oh and let's not forget this manga is hilarious and jokes hit just right most of the time!

Violinist plays with the extremes of comedy and drama having them play off each other and this is where the love it or hate it aspect comes into play. The very dramatic scenes and the very bloody scenes often get broken into by humor, jokes, and puns. Personally this doesn't bother me. (Think of a YuYuHakushou that is both more extreme, in terms of how much there is, with the drama and with the humor.) I think laughter in the face of great odds or sadness is important, not just to cope, to actually heal and thats so often looked over. So it doesn't bother me when they do this in the manga.

At any rate, this series made me laugh, it made me cry, and it made me hopeful again. It will always have a close place to my heart and I hope you will give it a read!
If you decide to give it a shot please give it until chapter 6, thats where it really gets the plot rolling!


For a serious moment preview check out my little phone wallpaper Death of a Dragon here.

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Assassination Classroom

Assassination Classroom
Ansatsu Kyoushitsu
Author: Matsui Yuusei

Ok normally I like to wait for a series to be completed before singing it praises, I've had too many series ruined by rushed sloppy endings, but I really adore this series despite it just getting off the ground. (as in its over the 40 chapter will it make it hump)

First off this isn't my usual cup of tea, I am not a huge fan of school comedies but I love this one! The reason I gave this series a chance in the first place is that I am a big fan of another series by the same author, Majin Tantei Nougami Neuro. (a fantastic mystery supernatural series) So I read the fist chapter and soon enough I was hooked on Ansatsu!

The plot is about a trouble class at an elite school that has been selected to assassinate their teacher, who is an alien (Kinda? He looks kind of like an octopus)(Although rescent chapters suggest that may not be the case) who has announced he will destroy the world within a year and as proof he can do it he puts a big hole in the moon. As part of a deal with the Japanese government he will be the teacher of a high school class but the students are the ones who have to kill him.
Sound silly? Who cares! It's a hilarious series with a healthy balance between silly gags and heart felt moments. It has everything you want and expect from a school place comedy with wonderful new takes on the genre with the addition of assassination and science fiction. The series deals with the schools unusual politics evolving the E class that holds the students with low grades, the scifi elements with the teacher, relationships between the students to the teacher and assassination. That may sound like a lot , but for a long running series it will be perfect. Being somewhat familiar with the author I can say this series is probably in for an interesting ride and I look forward to it.
Having read another series by the same author I have faith in Matsui Yuusei to develop a great story!

Ps. Sorry I've been slow updating lately. I think people read these as my views have been steadily going up and I would like to thank everybody who is and has been patient with me.
Also sorry its been awhile since I've done an anime, watching anime takes longer than reading a manga for me and my times been scarce .I plan to do an anime next, and as always am open to comments and requests or just chatting in general.

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Ao No Review (Blue Exorcist)

I have been following this series since I found the first chapter online a few years ago so I am quite a fan… XD

Ao No Exorcist, also know as Blue Exorcist, starts out with a pretty standard plot. Half demon boy, evil dad, dead mom, murder, boy gets taken in by a group of exorcists. See? Nothing-new there… It’s as the plot progresses that this series begins to stand out. The depth of the characters, the main character Rin in particular, is suburb! All of the characters have pretty realistic reactions to the happenings around them and the mystery of wondering what’s going to happen next is always a rush. At the school for exorcists Rin has to hide his half demon identity or risk being killed by other exorcists. This makes for some exciting tension between him and his friends.
Again this is a pretty normal sounding shounen manga, and for the most part it is. For me I fell in love with the tension and realism of reactions of the characters. (I can’t go into more detail without terrible spoilers…) I love that it feels like the author has a real idea of where they want the story to progress. As far as shounen goes this one stands at a level that is very accessible by not being too bloody or gruff, but also not being too kiddish and light.
Also while the anime based off this manga has garnered this series some much-deserved attention, I still feel like it’s worth a mention here and definitely worth the read. Half demon action series are also a fan girl fav for me… XO
The artwork is very pretty in my opinion and the story is a fun shounen with some punch!
This series is ongoing so I can’t say with complete confidence that it will have a good ending, (I can’t put any series on my favorite list if I haven’t seen/watched it in it’s entirety) but I think it has great promise to remain a great series!

Also I am happy to say this series is available for sale in the English language published by VIZ!!! (And I tooootally own it!)