Welcome to the next instalment in my Do I Still Like This Manga series! This time we’re throwing it all the way back to the first manga series I bought where I hadn’t already watched some of the anime. Yep, back when I was 8/9, I bought a few volumes of Sailor Moon and Cardcaptor Sakura, and then I started to collect Miracle Girls!
This is a shoujo manga series that not many people will have heard of. Originally published in Japan in the ’90s, Tokyopop bought it to an English-speaking audience in the early 2000s. This was back before Tokyopop started releasing manga published the original way around. So these were shorter volumes, printed the western way around and released with anglicised names for most characters – names I will use in this post.
Ahh, the old days.
Miracle Girls is technically a magical girl series, but not in the way you’d expect. In it, we follow identical twins, Mika and Toni, as they attend school, fall in love and learn more about their psychic powers. The girls go to different schools, and when Mika asks Toni to switch with her to compete in the sports festival, someone seems to catch on to their powers. Putting them at risk as they try to deal with their personal relationships.
Continue reading “Do I Still Like This Manga? Miracle Girls by Nami Akimoto” →
If you know me, you know that I’ve adored fairytales since childhood. I love reading them, which means that retellings are up my alley. When I saw that Titan Books were publishing an anthology of fairytale retellings with a bunch of authors I love? Yeah, I was sold.
I’ll admit that I’ve not read the entire thing cover to cover. But I am OBSESSED with this anthology. I want to eke out the reading experience as long as possible, so I decided to review this book after reading a few retellings.
But one of my favourite things about this collection is that it contains the original tales too! Most of the stories in this are pretty well known, but a few aren’t as well known. The fairytales being included means that if you want to immediately compare or just reread a favourite after, you can! This is a reasonably chunky anthology, and the original stories are included, so that’s why.
Now I’ll go into more detail on some of the stories.
Continue reading “Book Review: At Midnight edited by Dahlia Adler” →
I wasn’t big on contemporary YA when I was younger, as I associated it with those sad books. You know the kind I mean. And those books generally don’t appeal to me. But though If I Can Give You That gives off similar vibes, something about it had me curious. This wasn’t an easy read topic-wise, but it was fast to get through, and I’m glad I’ve read it.
Seventeen-year-old Gael attends a local LGBTQA+ support group for teens at the urging of his best friend, but as a trans teen in a conservative school, he didn’t plan to say much. That’s until he meets Declan and winds up absorbed by his friendship. As their relationship deepens, Gael starts to discover himself. Still, back at home, things are getting worse with his mother’s declining mental health and his dad trying to get back in touch. Gael must decide whether lowering his guard is safe or will make things worse.
Continue reading “Book Review: If I Can Give You That by Michael Gray Bulla” →
If you’re into shoujo manga, 90’s shoujo anime and/or Japanese dramas, you’ve probably heard of Marmalade Boy. It’s an incredibly popular shoujo manga series from the early 90s. It was one of the earlier titles that Tokyopop released in English back in the day. It was a series I picked a few volumes up back when I was 12/13, and it was a series that I always meant to finish. But one that, due to it going out of print and me being a kid who didn’t think to hunt it down online…I never did.
So I’m so glad that Seven Seas have bought the rights and are now rereleasing this series in some stunning collectors’ editions. I obviously preordered volume 1 and read it super quickly after getting it.
But it’s also a very dated series with some content I was leery of even reading it as a kid. So I was curious about how I’d feel about this series now. I wasn’t put off knowing some of the content in this book. However, some newer readers might wind up DNFing due to the issues. Still, the 90s/00s style drama isn’t usually something I enjoy anymore. And this series is packed full of that.
Marmalade Boy follows 16-year-old Miki, whose life was turned upside down when her parents return from a holiday only to tell her they’re getting divorced. On the trip, they met another couple, and now they’ve decided to switch partners! They move in together to keep the family units together, including Miki’s new step-brother, Yuu.
Just a quick warning that this post will contain spoilers for this and later volumes, so read on if you’re okay with that.
Continue reading “Do I Still Like This Manga? Marmalade Boy by Wataru Yoshizumi” →
I love a full-cast audiobook, so when I saw a YA thriller with a full cast set a listen now on NetGalley, you bet I instantly went and downloaded it. I knew it was going to be a thriller with some supernatural elements, but let me tell you, I couldn’t have guessed how wild this book was going to get.
This book is essentially a Courtney Summers book that took a detour through Death Note. If that doesn’t intrigue you, I don’t know what will.
Continue reading “Book Review: Burying Eva Flores by Jennifer Alsever” →
Eva Flores is missing, presumed dead, and everyone thinks Sophia did it. In this book, told through a blend of story, texts and interviews, we discover why Sophia hated Eva, what was going on in their lives and the magical notebook that allowed Sophia to mess with Eva’s life in revenge.
I don’t usually blog about music, but if you’ve seen me on Twitter, you’ll know I’ve started to get into more Japanese music over the last couple of years. Specifically music from animated music projects or franchises.
So what does that mean?
By an animated music project or franchise, I mean a piece of media where a fictional singer or group releases music but only with animated music videos. Unless you go to a specific concert with voice actors, even live content will feature these animated characters. So, like the Gorillaz. But there’s more of them and usually a lot of story to these series. I’ll admit I’m not sure if all of these are considered animated music projects. Some have games or anime.
Continue reading “Story and Music- Animated Music Project Recommendations” →
Back in 2021, I was attempting to do monthly recaps. I’d sum up how many books I’ve read this month and write some mini-reviews.
It’s been a while since I’ve done one, and I’ve decided that this is something that I want to get into. I like the idea of talking a little bit about various books so you can get an idea of what I’ve been reading.
Continue reading “Monthly Recap – February 2023” →
Over the last few years, there’s been an onslaught of new books like Percy Jackson but focusing on the mythology of various cultures written by authors from those very same cultures. It’s a trend I absolutely love, and the latest was Momo Arashima Steals the Sword of the Wind by Misa Sugiura. This Japanese-inspired story is filled with action, friendship and plenty of emotion.
Momo Arashima has just turned 12, and she’s at the bottom of the popularity list at school. She’s always seen things she shouldn’t and is made fun of because of it. But one day, she’s attacked and discovers that her Mum is a Shinto goddess and is dying. To save her life, Momo will have to close the path to Yomi and stop danger from taking over the world. Fortunately, she’s not alone and has a talking fox called Niko, and her former best friend, Danny, to help.
Continue reading “Book Review: Momo Arashima Steals the Sword of the Wind by Misa Sugiura” →
Late last year, I was invited to attend the Rock the Boat showcase, and as part of that, I was sent a package of books. These were mostly releases of books already out by authors at the event. Still, it also included an ARC of Happyhead. It wasn’t a book I’d heard of before, but it sounded good. And I was right.
In this book, we follow Sebastian, a boy who is offered the opportunity to become happier by attending a radical retreat for teenagers. He’s not sure if he wants this, but he’s not given much choice. At least he can make his parents proud. But at the retreat, he meets the enigmatic Finn, and the other boy has him questioning what’s truly going on at this retreat. But the deeper into the programme, they discover that there might be no escape.
Continue reading “Book Review: HappyHead by Josh Silver” →
So it’s been a while since I posted about studying Japanese, and the reason for that is…I haven’t been doing much.
I haven’t stopped or given up. So that’s a positive. In the past, I’d have stopped completely.
But I’ve still been using Duolingo and WaniKani. I’ve still been trying to read Japanese, listening to Japanese music and watching Japanese videos. I’m starting to recognise more kanji, which is excellent, but my vocab hasn’t really been growing by that much. I’ve learnt phrases from Duolingo, but I want my vocabulary to grow.
Continue reading “Japanese Catchup #4” →