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3 Manga I Read in January

Ardo Omer

Staff Writer

Ardo Omer has a BA in criminology and a minor in creative writing. She’s a senior writer at Women Write About Comics and Batman seeks her advice constantly. Blog: Ardo Omer Twitter: @ArdoOmer

Last time I discussed my November reads, but since I didn’t read any manga in December, I skipped that month and headed straight to January. Before I get to that, here are some great manga posts to check out by fellow Panelteers: Kory’s How Sports Manga Got Me Into Sports, and Vernieda’s A Beginner’s Guide to Buying Digital Manga.

horimiya vol 2Horimiya Vol 2 by Hero and Daisuke Hagiwara

To say that I got so many soul crushing feels from this manga is…very accurate. I adored volume one, and volume two was even better with its character development, and romantic slow burn. Hori stresses over her future as her class takes the Future Track Questionnaire, and her worries of not being up-to-date on what her classmates are into persists from volume one. We get a bit of background on Miyamura which plays into his anxiety on whether or not “friends” is the right term to use towards Hori, Ishikawa, and Yuki (we’ve all crossed that bridge). Both characters start to question whether or not they see each other as more than friends, and as someone who is picky where romance is concerned, it was handled wonderfully. The panel structure is phenomenal, and the art overall helps sell feelings of these high school kids along with setting great pacing. Without giving too much away, there is a part of Miyamura’s story that goes down as one of my favourite pages of comics so far that really gets you invested in this character. It was released in January from Yen Press.

Verdict: OMG HOW HAVEN’T YOU BOUGHT IT YET? It’s available now from Yen Press.

how to raise a boring girlfriend vol 1How To Raise A Boring Girlfriend Vol 1 by Fumiaki Maruto, Takeshi Moriki, and Kurehito Misaki

So far I’ve enjoyed all of the mangas I’ve been reading which is pretty great but that couldn’t last forever. I’m sure the title is eyebrow raising for some but to me, it made me think, “Oh! This could be a clever book!” It was snappy, and attention grabbing so I grabbed it. Tomoya Aki is probably the most unlikeable characters I’ve ever read. He meets his dream girl over spring break when she loses her hat, and later meets her again at school but doesn’t recognize her. When he realizes that this girl he didn’t know existed was the same one as his fated love, he’s shocked…and then decides to use her as his muse for a dating sim. Aki is incredibly rude. He insults Katou constantly, and imposes his ideas of what girls should be like (from his dating sims) onto the girls he knows in real life. This is addressed a bit in the last few pages, but it wasn’t worth the 100+ pages before that. The female characters, however, are interesting, and I wouldn’t mind reading a manga about the three of them creating a dating sim without Aki.

Verdict: Sadly, it wasn’t for me. It’s available now from Yen Press.

One-Punch Man vol 3One-Punch Man Vol 3 by One, and Yusuke Murata

I still love this series so much about Saitama who’s a hero with the power to beat any opponent with just one punch. In volume one, he’s plagued with boredom because it’s so easy for him, and in volume two, he meets a cyborg names Genos who wants to be his student to learn how to possess strength like him. In volume three, both Genos and Saitama take the Hero Association test where, if they pass, they can be officially recognized as heroes. The art work is just so good since it plays with depth perception (going from super detailed to a little abstract like Saitama’s face), and the overall tone of the manga (Panelteer, Paul, talks about it more here).

Verdict: I find it hilarious, and I highly recommend reading it. Doooo it. It’s available now from Viz Media.

That’s all for January. Keep checking the site for some more manga coverage!