Manga Monday – Week 21

So, I’ve seen this feature on a few book blogs out there, and decided to make this feature my own. After suggestions from friends, Manga Mondays comes to Birth of a New Witch! I’ll try to give equal billing to manga being released both in the US and in Japan, since US licensing takes awhile and I read manga in both languages. I want to cater to other fans out there who do the same.

Confused by some of the terms I use in this feature? See Week 1 for clarification on my most commonly used terms.

And now, to this week’s US and Japanese choices!

Week 21 (US Release): “OreImo (My Little Sister Can’t Possibly Be This Cute!): Volume 1″ by Fushimi Tsukasa

Title: “OreImo (My Little Sister Can’t Possibly Be This Cute): Volume 1”

Author: Fushimi Tsukasa (original novel author)

Artist: Ikeda Sakura

Translation Company/US Publisher: Dark Horse Comics

Publication Date: September 5, 2012 (North America)

Genre: Seinen, Ecchi/Sexy, Humor, Slice of Life

Summary: Based on the best-selling light novel series! High-school student Kyousuke doesn’t get along with his cranky, dismissive, and secretive fourteen-year-old litter sister Kirino, but he suddenly finds himself forced to protect Kirino’s secrets–she’s not only a gorgeous fashion model, a track star, and an accomplished student, but she’s also obsessed with naughty video games and little kids’ fantasy anime! How can Kirino maintain her complicated lifestyle–and how can Kyousuke maintain his sanity? And might the tow of them, some how, just maybe, ever become friends?

Usagi’s Take: I find it hilarious that Dark Horse decided to go with the abbreviated Japanese name for the series (“OreImo”, instead of “Ore no Imouto ga Konnani Kawaii Wake ga Nai”) and didn’t actually translate the name of the series, “My Sister Can’t Possibly Be This Cute”. But it’s handy, I guess, and easy to remember. Anyway, this is one of my favorite series, and I really need to read beyond the first light novel, because it’s awesome. This one has some pretty adult humor in it so it’s probably not suitable for young YA. It finally razes the double standard for boys and girls playing naughty video games, and Kirino is a heroine that will make you cheer (and facepalm) for, while feeling terrible for her brother. Dark Horse has done a GREAT job translating this, so they have my full support (review will be out soon!). Anyway, this one is hilarious and highly recommended, so be sure to check it out! Definitely one of the best of 2012 so far!

Week 21 (Japanese Release): “Sword Art Online: Aincrad – Volume 1″ by Kawahara Reki & Nakamura Tamako

Title: “Sword Art Online – Aincrad: Volume 1”

Author: Kawahara Reki (original novel author)

Artist: Nakamura Tamako

Genre: Sci-Fi, Survival, Fantasy, Cyberpunk, Action, Adventure, Romance, Seinen

Publication Date: 2010

Publisher: Dengeki Daioh

Summary: Escape was impossible until it was cleared; a game over would mean an actual “death”―.
Without knowing the “truth” of the mysterious next generation MMO, ‘Sword Art Online(SAO)’, approximately ten thousand users logged in together, opening the curtains to this cruel death battle.
Participating alone in SAO, protagonist Kirito had promptly accepted the “truth” of this MMO.
And in the game world, a gigantic floating castle named ‘Aincrad’, he distinguished himself as a solo player.

Aiming to clear the game by reaching the highest floor, Kirito riskily continued alone. Because of a pushy invitation from a female warrior and rapier expert, Asuna, he teamed up with her.

That encounter brought about an opportunity to call out to the fated Kirito―

Usagi’s Take: I’m currently plowing my way through the original light novels, and to be honest, I prefer the illustrations used for the novels compared to the art in this manga. That aside, this manga adaptation covers the first two volumes of the series – both in the Sword Art Online/Aincrad arc. This series has a little everything for everyone, and I really hope both the manga and the novels get licensed soon. It’s an incredibly addictive series, so this one is VERY highly recommended, and in my best of 2012 so far. There are ten books in the novel series so far, and one manga volume so far, so here’s hoping they get licensed soon so everyone can enjoy them!


What about you? Do you read manga? If so, feel free to participate with your own manga monday segment and link up in the comments section!



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