Saturday Smalls — March 23rd, 2019

This week’s mini review round-up includes 4 manga titles!

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Gyo by Junji Ito

TITLE: Gyo
AUTHOR: Junji Ito
GENRE: Horror
AGE RANGE: Adult

Something is rotten in Okinawa… The floating smell of death hangs over the island. What is it? A strange, legged fish appears on the scene… So begins Tadashi and Kaori’s spiral into the horror and stench of the sea.

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First, Junji Ito has to have one of the most twisted and bizarre imaginations to ever exist.

Second, I’ve come to realize that Ito’s work is extremely hit-and-miss for me, and sadly, Gyo was a miss. It wasn’t awful by any means, but it was just dragged out for way too long, and the plot wasn’t particularly interesting. I felt like nearly half of the book was just the characters yelling about how bad everything smelled.

Anyways, I always really recommend Junji Ito’s work to lovers of horror manga, but this one didn’t work too well for me.

3stars

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Tomie by Junji Ito

TITLE: Tomie
AUTHOR: Junji Ito
GENRE: Horror
AGE RANGE: Adult

Tomie Kawakami is a femme fatale with long black hair and a beauty mark just under her left eye. She can seduce nearly any man, and drive them to murder as well, even though the victim is often Tomie herself. While one lover seeks to keep her for himself, another grows terrified of the immortal succubus. But soon they realize that no matter how many times they kill her, the world will never be free of Tomie.

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Again, Junji Ito’s work is pretty hit or miss for me, and this was, sadly, the biggest “miss” of all of them. I just couldn’t get into this at all and didn’t feel like it carried Ito’s usual brand of bizarro, gross horror that I get so intrigued by. I think I would’ve enjoyed it more if it carried a single, cohesive plot, but it felt really jumbled and all over the place, like Junji Ito couldn’t decide if he wanted it to be a novel or an anthology.

2stars

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MPD Psycho, Vol. 1 by Eiji Otsuka

TITLE: MPD Psycho, Vol. 1
AUTHOR: Eiji Otsuka & Sho-u Tajima
GENRE: Horror
AGE RANGE: Adult

Kobayashi Yousuke’s life is changed forever after a serial killer notices something “special” about him. That same killer mutilates Kobayashi’s wife and kick-starts a “multiple personality battle” within Kobayashi that pushes him into a complex tempest of interconnected deviants and evil forces.

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This was so bizarre and uniquely its own, and graphic, but I honestly loved it a lot. I can safely say I’ve never read anything quite like MPD Psycho and I can’t wait to continue the series. Fair warning, when I say this manga is graphic, I mean it is graphic; there’s a ton of nudity, violence, and body horror that even made me shudder once or twice (which is pretty hard to do!). The storyline is super intriguing, though if you’re a reader who isn’t fond of stories revolving around DID/”multiple personality disorder”, you’ll want to steer clear as that’s the bulk of the story’s theme here.

The artwork is also beautifully done, and truly, I can’t say anything else besides that this is easily my new favorite horror manga and I highly encourage picking it up!

5stars

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Ten Count, Vol. 1 by Rihito Takarai

TITLE: Ten Count, Vol. 1
AUTHOR: Rihito Takarai
GENRE: Romance
AGE RANGE: Adult

Corporate secretary Shirotani suffers from obsessive-compulsive disorder. One day he meets Kurose, a therapist who offers to take him through a ten-step program to cure him of his compulsion. As the two go through each of the ten steps, Shirotani’s attraction to his counselor grows.

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The art is stunning, the story is intriguing, the characters are immensely lovable. The main character, Shirotani, has OCD and is terrified of germs. The representation was something I was a little nervous of when I picked the book up, but there was no need for my caution because it’s executed beautifully.

Not only does Shirotani display a ton of very legitimate and real compulsions that a lot of people with OCD will relate to (*quietly raises hand*), but I also love the fact that he is in no way “cured” by the time he spends with his love interest; in fact, he makes most of the progress without his counselor, Kurose, even being present! Note here: I should mention, however, that if you have a problem with immersion/exposure therapy methods being utilized in mental health, this won’t be the series for you!

On top of everything else, the chemistry between Shirotani and Kurose is so clear and sweet from the beginning, and I loved how, when other minor characters noticed the tension, they were all so accepting and even incredibly encouraging.

5stars

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Just a 26-year-old children's librarian trying to juggle motherhood, grad school, blogging, gaming, and everyday life.

5 thoughts on “Saturday Smalls — March 23rd, 2019

  1. I kept seeing Ten count in the story and kept picking it up, but I had no idea what it was about and put it back down. It actually sounds really nice! Maybe next time I will actually buy it 🙂

    (www.evelynreads.com)

    Like

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