Manga of the Week: Ouran High School Host Club, by Bisco Hatori

Hello, there! We reached another middle in another week and it’s time for me to recommend a manga title again! Today’s title is dedicated to Hachiyumi, who’s coming over my place on the holidays!! God knows what we will be getting ourselves into, haha! But anyway, she introduced me to this title (just as so many others) and it’s only fair that Hachi gets her credits, haha! Without further ado, our Manga of the Week: Ouran High School Host Club, by Bisco Hatori!

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summary

One day, Haruhi, a scholarship student at exclusive Ouran High School, breaks an $80,000 vase that belongs to the ‘Host Club’, a mysterious campus group consisting of six super-rich (and gorgeous) guys. To pay back the damages, she is forced to work for the club, and it’s there that she discovers just how wealthy the boys are and how different they are from everybody else.

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Why I think it’s a worth-reading manga: BECAUSE IT IS SO FUNNY! I know the title sounds a mouthful (and it is), but you will never stop laughing at this title! You know when people say that money makes people go insane? That’s the case. Poor Haruhi has to endure a bunch of very rich and very crazy boys and they don’t even know that she is a girl! Hahaha! Seriously, just read it and come fangirl with me later, please!!

That’s it, thanks for reading! Have you read the manga or watched the anime for OHSHC??

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Manga of the Week: Nana, by Ai Yazawa

Hello! Quick late post today, just to recommend a manga for this week! I’m trying to gather a bit of everything that I have already read here on the blog, so today it’s time to show you Nana, by Ai Yazawa!

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summary

Nana Komatsu is a young woman who’s endured an unending string of boyfriend problems. Moving to Tokyo, she’s hoping to take control of her life and put all those messy misadventures behind her. She’s looking for love and she’s hoping to find it in the big city. Nana Osaki, on the other hand, is cool, confident and focused. She swaggers into town and proceeds to kick down the doors to Tokyo’s underground punk scene. She’s got a dream and won’t give up until she becomes Japan’s No. 1 rock’n’roll superstar. This is the story of two 20-year-old women who share the same name. Even though they come from completely different backgrounds, they somehow meet and become best friends. The world of Nana is a world exploding with sex, music, fashion, gossip and all-night parties.

Why I think it’s a worth-reading manga: Nana is that kind of shoujo (romance) that stars cute and light and then goes darker with each volume. Secrets, lies, problems, dramas… Everything pops up. It’s not only real life, it’s a sad real life. I admit that I couldn’t keep going with the series after volume 7, as I would open it and immediately started to cry, but Yazawa-sensei’s art is wonderful, just like her plotting skills. If you like a good drama, you have to pick this one up 🙂

goodreads iconThat’s it, thanks for reading!

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Manga of the Week: Death Note, from Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata

Hi, there! Good morning and happy Wednesday! I’m kind of freaking out today, as my graduation ceremony is tonight, but I’ll try to act normal, okay? HAHAHA

Today’s Manga of the Week is Death Note, from Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata. This title left me glued until the very end, as there were so many twists and intriguing characters. And did I mention that the main character is basically a villain? ❤

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Goodreads’ blurb:

Light Yagami is an ace student with great prospects – and he’s bored out of his mind. But all that changes when he finds the Death Note, a notebook dropped by a rogue Shinigami, a death god. Any human whose name is written in the notebook dies, and now Light has vowed to use the power of the Death Note to rid the world of evil. But when criminals begin dropping dead, the authorities send the legendary detective L to track down the killer. With L hot on his heels, will Light lose sight of his noble goal…or his life?

Why I think it’s a worth-reading manga: BECAUSE THE MAIN CHARACTER IS A VILLAIN! Okay, not just that. This title is intriguing, delicious, full of fandoms and room for ~interpretations~, if you catch my drift (and if you don’t, just google Light and L yaoi to see what I mean, haha!), and so much more. Until the end, you don’t know what’s going to happen and it is awesome!

That’s it, haha! I have a couple of bookish news to share and, hopefully, I’ll get to post two reviews today, after I get back from my graduation ceremony. That’s the plan, at least…

Thanks for reading!

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A Foreign Love Affair, from Ayano Yamane

Good night, again! Can you tell that I’m full of energy on this Spring break? Haha!

Also, I’d like to start this review apologizing myself. I was trying to be a restrained reader (a.k.a. finishes a book, review, start the other). Trying being the imperative word. I went crazy over these few last days and read three manga titles and three books. Yup. I own you six reviews and I’m not counting the one that I’m trying to beginning to write. Hopefully I’ll get them all done until the end of the Easter holiday, haha!

Now, let’s quit the chat and go to real business: A Foreign Love Affair, from Ayano Yamane!

a foreign love affair.JPG
from my Instagram 😀

The Story

What would you do if you found the love of your life…

… In your first night as a married man to someone else?

That’s Japanese mob clan heir Ranmaru’s dilemma. To satisfy his father’s political wishes, he agreed to marry a girl from another clan, to forge an alliance. The problem is that they barely can stand each other and start to fight as soon as they board their honeymoon cruise to Italy.

And, on the very same night, Ranmaru leaves his spouse to literally fall in the arms of the man that would steal his heart: Italian captain Al Valentino, the embodiment of fun and sex.

An unlikely romance blossoms between them and even destiny seems to be working 24/7 to make sure that Ranmaru and All will remain together.

The big question is: will reality bless this love as well?

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The Analysis

Just remembering that those were my impressions and opinion as a reader 🙂

If you have been here for a while, you are very sure of three things: a) I love Ava March; b) I love gay romance; c) I love manga. You may also know that I’m a giveaway rat, but never mind that. After reading Finder, also from Yamane-sensei, I knew I’d love anything that she publishes, so I started looking for more titles. A Foreign Love Affair left me besotted and wanting more, as it had the perfect bit of everything: romance, drama, comedy, hot scenes, hot males, unpredictable plot and flawless art. It would be an offense to Yamane-sensei to give this title anything less than five stars and a free-hug coupon. I also love coupons.

The narrative had a steady pace and lots of action scenes, both sheet and real action ones, haha! We follow the story mainly from Ranmaru’s point of view, but there are also glimpses on Al’s part and other minor characters, giving the reader full control of everything that was happening on the story. As a good control freak, I was very pleased with this, haha!

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As mentioned, the plot was completely unpredictable. I never knew what was coming next and I was biting my nails non-stop until the end, as Yamane-sensei usually has a strong drama side on her stories. I won’t say a thing more, but be prepared for a surprise. Not good, nor bad. Just a big surprise, haha!

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The characters, along the art, are the best part in this title. Ranmaru was such an stereotype of the yakuza [a.k.a. mob] in Japan that I’d always laugh with him. He had that cluelessness and cuteness about him, I don’t know… All I know is that I can totally understand why Al was so interested in him, haha!

Oh, yes. Al…

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Al Valentino in all his glory*

I love Italian boys. Miss Fergie says they do it better and I guess she’s right, haha! Just look at this man. I fell so hard for him that it was hard to share him with Ranmaru. Oh well. Lucky him that I can share ;D Al was the typical perfect Italian prince: rich, handsome, funny, caring and just a hint of stalker. He takes the “so beautiful it hurts” deal to a whole new level, if you catch my drift lol

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And then there is the art of Yamane-sensei.

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from left to right: Ranmaru and Al*

Seriously, I stare at the pictures on her works.

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Overall, if you like hot and involving romances, hot males, perfect art and quick reads, you have to add A Foreign Love Affair to your TBR!

5star

That’s it, thank you for reading another fangirling review 😀

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*ps: I do not own the illustrations, they were found on Google, belong to Ayano Yamane-sensei and were used with illustrative purposes only 🙂

Manga of the Week: Kare First Love, from Kaho Miyasaka

Good morning! Another Wednesday kicks in, another manga is brought! My recommendation for today’s Manga of the Week is a beautiful and light hearted romance [aka shoujo] called Kare First Love, from Kaho Miyasaka!

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from my Instagram 😀

Goodreads’ blurb:

The age-old dilemma of choosing between your friend and the one you love is the lesson for the day for these bubbly high schoolers. 16-year-old Karin Karino finds herself torn between keeping the friendship of her classmate Yuka and entertaining the advances of a boy named Kiriya. Plain-Jane Karin experiences the gut-tingling roller coaster ride for her love and first kiss as fate pairs her up with Kiriya, who also happens to be Yuka’s object of affection.

Through a series of chance meetings, Kiriya discovers the exquisite beauty lurking behind Karin’s thick glasses and coy demeanor, and asks her to be his girlfriend. But living happily ever after in high school isn’t on the curriculum, as Karin soon finds herself the center of Kiriya’s attention, as well as the bulls eye in embittered pal Yuka’s dart-board of hate.

Why I think it’s a worth-reading manga: this was one of the most classic shoujos I’ve ever read that didn’t bore me to the core. I’m very specific in my tastes to get swept off my feet for simple romances (reads romances without a supernatural or gay or dystopian touch to it). Also, I don’t like drama books or mangas, so shoujo isn’t my go-to genre most of the time. Unless Hachiyumi says the series is worth my time. Then I’ll read it and love it ❤ Point is, Kare First Love was adorable and perfect and you have to read it if you like real characters and a twisting plot!

That’s it, thanks so much for reading ❤ Have I convinced you yet that you need to start reading mangas?? ;D

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Sekaiichi Hatsukoi, from Shungiku Nakamura

Hello, there! I know, it’s late, but I bring to you something that hasn’t visit the blog for quite a while: a manga review! And, of course, it’s a yaoi [a.k.a. gay] title, so sit back and relax: Annelise is back to her good shape, haha!

Today’s series is none other than Sekaiichi Hatsukoi, from Shungiku Nakamura-sensei! This review contemplates the series until volume 9, as it’s still being published on Japan.

Sekaiichu Hatsukoi.JPG
from my Instagram

The Story

Ritsu Onodera is the heir to one of the biggest publishing companies in Japan. He loves his job as a book editor more than anything in the world and has been living the dream since he left college and started working.

Perfect? Perfect.

But there is one thing that really bothers Ritsu: everybody assumes he’s got his job and is good at it because he is taking advantage of his dad’s position as the president and owner of the company. And, as it isn’t true, Ritsu is determinate to prove that he can be the best book editor in the world anywhere without his dad’s help.

So he quits and leaves behind his perfect life to end up on the shoujo [romance] manga division of Marukawa Shoten publishing company.

And directly into the hands on the most tyrannical manga editor of all times: Masamune Takano.

As if things couldn’t get worse, Ritsu starts to feel that he knows Takano from somewhere and the feeling seems to be reciprocal…

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The Analysis

Just remembering that those are my impressions and opinion as a reader 🙂

This title was another tip from dear Hachiyumi, responsible for the entry of some of the best manga titles ever in my life, like The Tyrant Falls in Love, Ten Count and Super Lovers. I already knew that I would love it, as she knows my tastes almost better than myself, but wow. THIS SERIES IS SOOOO COOL! It explains in detail how a Manga Publisher works and shows their very difficult routine. As a journalist and a manga lover, I was swept away for all the knowledge that came with my delicious gay romance. Sekaiichi Hatsukoi started as a 4 stars series for me because of the art, that was a little weird, but now evolved into a full 5 stars series!

The narrative follows Ritsu’s point of view almost most of the time, especially on the beginning, but as the story goes by and the other guys in the publishing company gain relevance and their own parallel stories, we start to see the story from almost everyone’s point of view. AND I LOVE IT.

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The plot is simple, but has a lot of room for anything to happen, as it is the kind of manga that follows the character’s everyday life. Of course, the story has a point: Ritsu needs to fall in love again with Takano, his high school boyfriend that broke his heart (and had his own heart broken by Ritsu). But until then – and even after, if you ask me, there’s so many nice things that can happen! And things get really tangled when the secondary characters become main characters on their own stories. They also have their problems to solve and stay with their respective lovers, so it is all too exciting!

I wanted to take my time reading this series, as a new chapter is out only every four months at time (just like Super Lovers, may I add…). Seriously, this kills me, but moving on. I couldn’t stop reading! I read volume one and held myself, but as I read the next one, I was doomed. I almost cried when I reached the last available chapter, as only God knows when the next one will reach English readers now.

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The characters are the best part of this title. I wouldn’t classify them as the strongest point, as we’ll get there, but definitely they are what would appeal the most to any other person in the world besides myself and Hachi, haha! Ritsu is a good protagonist, not overly dense or cocky, but not helpless and pathetic either. Takano is a dominant and stubborn boss that will do anything to get his mangas published right and in time and to get into Ritsu’s pants. [spoiler alert: Takano always gets what he wants, so he got into Ritsu’s pants several times.]

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that would be Takano lol

I find highly amusing Ritsu’s perpetual denial of any good feelings that grow inside himself for Takano during the story and that’s new for me. I usually have no patience with indecisive characters, but there was just something about Ritsu that made me love him. To be honest, I love all the characters in this series, haha!

However, I must insist that the strongest point ever in this series is the backstage of the manga publishing companies in Japan. This is the kind of knowledge that you usually only have if you work in the area or is very close to someone who does it. Seriously, it was priceless for me to see how my lovely babies are born and now I want to thank all the editors that brought me the manga titles present on my collection!! ❤ THANK YOU, GUYS!

Now, let’s talk about Nakamura-sensei’s art. It definitely evolves during the series and gets so much better… Here’s a comparison between an image on the beginning of the series and one more ahead:

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from letf to right: Takano and Ritsu <3*
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and again, some volumes later!*

Amazing, right?? Nakamura-sensei isn’t fooling around by any means, haha!

Overall, if you like gay titles, are deeply interested on how this crazy manga publishing world works and love real and alive characters, just stop whatever you’re doing and go read Sekaiichi Hatsukoi!!

5star

That’s it, thank you for reading! Have you missed my manga reviews? Haha!

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*ps: I do not own the illustrations, they were found on Google, belong to Shungiku Nakamura-sensei and were used with illustrative purposes only 🙂

 

Manga of the Week: Sade, from Senno Knife

Good morning and congrats, you managed to reach the middle of the week once again and I am proud of you ❤ Our Manga of the Week this time is a very different title: Sade, from Senno Knife!

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from my Instagram!

Goodreads’ blurb:

It consists of a one-shot edition of comics based upon erotic tales written by the Marquis de Sade, the Grimm Brothers and Pauline Réage. Its format is shoujo, manga for girls.

This is one of the most helpful blurbs of the history.

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Why I think it’s a worth-reading manga: because it is different. This is a 18+ rated title because it contains sex and torture scenes, be warned, but the art is peculiar – not my usual type, but harmonic – and it’s not vulgar as you would expect from a manga with sex scenes. Also, the stories are manga adaptations from classic tales, so it’s a kind of high culture manga, if that makes sense lol Anyway, if you enjoy 19th century manga titles, adaptations from the classics and highly intriguing plots, read this one shot!

That’s it, thanks for reading 😀 Later we shall have a blitz and a book review, stay tuned!

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Manga author: Kaori Yuki

Hi, there! Welcome to March’s first edition of Authors of my Heart ❤

Today is manga author day, so next Friday we will see a book author 🙂

Today’s mangaka is a very special one, as she is responsible for truly defining the kind of art that I prefer on my manga titles. You’d think it was Matsuri Hino, but no lol

It was Kaori Yuki-sensei!

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As you may have already read in this post, we’ve met in 2005, as soon as Panini Comics released Angel Sanctuary here in Brazil and I was hooked since page one. On the first time that I’ve read this series, what kept me loving this series was Yuki-sensei’s art, as I didn’t understand most of what was happening (and with reason; I was 10 and the title is rated 16+ lol). I only really understood this series on its core when I re-read it, five years later.

Kaori Yuki has several series and oneshots under her name and I’m ashamed to say that I found this out writing this post. I only knew the titles that I had read and two tbr series from her. I’m a lousy excuse for a fan, I know :/ The awesome part is that I have several titles to read from her now ❤

Anyway, let’s talk about what I have read:

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Goodreads’ blurb:

The angel Alexiel loved God, but she rebelled against Heaven when she saw how disgracefully the other angels were behaving. She was finally captured, and as punishment sent to Earth to live an endless series of tragic lives. She now inhabits the body of Setsuna Mudo, a troubled teen in love with his sister Sara. Setsuna’s misery mirrors the chaos among the angels, and their combined passions threaten to destroy both Heaven and Earth.

Why is Setsuna so mixed up? Despite his attempts to be noble, he’ll fight anyone anytime; he ignores all authority; and he harbors feelings for his sister that can only be described as “incestuous.” Why is he such a mess? The reason may be found with two demons from the underworld and their enemy, an insane angel who is distributing an insidious computer game called Angel Santuary.

The first one we never forget, right? One of my favorite things about this title is the characters dynamics. They are so real and their relationships (not only amorous ones) are always so fogged, so… Grey. Seriously, just read this, haha!

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Goodreads’ blurb:

Born under an evil moon harboring dark secrets, Earl Cain C. Hargreves, the youthful heir of the aristocratic Hargreves family, is a man on a quest to find the truth about his family’s past. Written in dark, harrowing episodes, The CAIN Saga chronicles how Cain solves the strange crimes that seem to plague his cursed existence, yet somehow bring him closer to deciphering the puzzling circumstances surrounding his father’s tragic death.

I spoke of this one very recently, so I’ll just add that I love the mysteries that Cain has on his hands during this series!

  • Boy’s Next Door

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Goodreads’ blurb:

Lawrence is a young male prostitute whose actual aim was to look for his brother. Unknowingly, he did find his brother – the owner of the young boys prostitute club. However, his life was about to change when he witnessed the killing of one of the biggest serial killers – Dr. Wolfgang Adrain Cray. Instead of running away, he searches for the murderer and falls in love with him. Adrian, who is basically a nice person (he is a school teacher) takes in Lawrence and reciprocates Lawrence s love. but Lawrence s brother was not too happy about losing a possible money tree and sends out his gang in search of Lawrence.

You may have noticed that Kaori Yuki’s stories tend to not win the happy manga of the year prize, right? Oh well, on Boy’s Next Door, she outdoes herself. I’m not usually one to cry while reading manga, but I did here. I felt the pain, the agony, the crushed love. I really would love to re-read this title and review it, but I don’t know if I am strong enough. What awaits me is too real…

That’s it about Yuki-sensei ❤ I also innovated this time and prepared a list with my TBR list of her titles:

Thank you for reading 😀 If any of my TBR titles of this post caught your eye and you want a review for it, just say so in the comments that I’ll work faster towards the chosen title 😀

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Manga of the Week: Ultramaniac, from Wataru Yoshizumi

Hello and Happy Wednesday 😀 Today will be another day full of book news, but let’s stick to our good and old Manga of the Week section for now, haha! Our star today is a lovely title: Ultramaniac, from Wataru Yoshizumi-sensei!

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from my Instagram 😀

Goodreads’ blurb:

Shy Ayu Tateishi has just made a new friend at school. But this new friend, much to her surprise, is no ordinary classmate. Nina Sakura may look like a normal middle school girl, but she’s got a big secret.

She’s a witch.

Or, rather, she’s studying to be a witch. And, apparently, she’s not doing her homework. Her spells are devastating in their ineffectiveness and often result in the most embarrassing situations for poor Ayu.

But things wouldn’t be so bad if Nina’s sorcery didn’t make Ayu look silly in front of the one boy she secretly adores. All she wants is a simple love potion. What she gets, however, is a new best friend who almost flunked out of witch school!

Why I think it’s a worth-reading manga: this title is light and funny, but not silly. If you want a good high school romance title to pass time, cheer you up or rest your brain, Ultramaniac is the perfect one! 😀

That’s it! Thank you for reading and brace yourself for another day full of news, haha! Have you heard of Ultramaniac before??

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Manga of the Week: The Cain Saga, from Kaori Yuki!

Good morning! We have reached another middle of the week day and I want to hear everybody saying: “Manga of the Week day!” when I count to three! One, two… Three!

No? Not really? Okay, I can live with that, haha! Anyway, today’s chosen one is the second title that I’ve read from Kaori Yuki-sensei: The Cain Saga!

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Goodreads’ blurb:

Born under an evil moon harboring dark secrets, Earl Cain C. Hargreves, the youthful heir of the aristocratic Hargreves family, is a man on a quest to find the truth about his family’s past. Written in dark, harrowing episodes, The CAIN Saga chronicles how Cain solves the strange crimes that seem to plague his cursed existence, yet somehow bring him closer to deciphering the puzzling circumstances surrounding his father’s tragic death.

Why I think it’s a worth-reading manga: Kaori Yuki owns one of the most beautiful and flawless art of all times and her stories are always dark, disturbing and highly entertaining. The mysteries contained on The Cain Saga will make you grip your chair while reading. Cain himself could be Sherlock Holmes’ son, as he is eccentric, intelligent and deadly to his enemies – both metaphorically and literally. Also, he has a weird relationship with his butler and to this day I’m not sure if the butler was a trustworthy person lol

That’s it, thanks for reading 😀 Have you ever read a title by Kaori Yuki-sensei??

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