Manga Reviews (7)

I often see people asking about manga on social media. Anything from “Is this manga okay for this age group?” to “What do you recommend?” A lot of the time, especially with recommendations, I see a lot of older titles. And while we all love older titles, I thought it might be fun to highlight some newer manga and give my overall thoughts–both good and bad. Basically, my guidelines for manga I look at is it has to be released in the US in the last year or so (I still have a few I’m looking at that are mid-2017), have at least 3 volumes, and be rated Teen + or lower.

So, here are some of the ones I looked at. (If you missed my earlier rounds of reviews, catch them here.)

Kakuriyo: Bed & Breakfast for Spirits by Midori Yumi

Aoi Tsubaki inherited her grandfather’s ability to see spirits—and his massive debt to them! Now she’s been kidnapped and taken to Kakuriyo, the spirit world, to make good on his bill. Her options: marry the head of the inn her grandfather trashed, or get eaten by ayakashi. But Aoi isn’t the type to let spirits push her around, and she’s determined to redeem her grandfather’s IOU on her own terms!

Aoi wants to work off her debt to the Tenjin-ya inn, but she only has one day to find a position and none of the managers are willing to hire a human! If she can just get someone to see past her family background, Aoi is certain she can prove her worth!.

 Rating: Teen 

Volumes Read: 3

My Thoughts: So, technically I’m putting this in my Young Adult collection due to Aoi being in college. However, this would be perfectly acceptable in teen collections; as of the third volume, there is no violence or sexual content. Honestly, this is probably one of the may favorite series I’ve read so far. I adored Aoi and this weird spirit world she’s been thrust into. She could have easily caved to the will of the Ōdanna, but she’s determined to find her own way. The ayakashi are not always friendly, but Aoi certainly has a way of charming them–even the ones who hated her grandfather. I love how it quietly deals with grief and how appearances can be deceiving. Aio has a lot to come to terms with between the grandfather she knew and the man who ran up this debt. I also loved that the Ōdanna didn’t force her to be his bride; he’s still trying to court her, but he’s also allowing her to make her own way. I highly recommend this one and can’t wait for future volumes. 

 

We Never Learn by Taishi Tsutsui

Nariyuki Yuiga comes from an impoverished family, so he’s eager to secure a full scholarship to college when he graduates high school. His principal agrees, with one stipulation—he must tutor the two smartest girls at the school and make sure they get into their target colleges! Rizu is a science genius who wants to study liberal arts. Fumino is effortlessly good at literature, but math makes her head spin. Nariyuki is stuck between a rock and a hard place, but who can complain about tutoring a couple of cute girls?

Nariyuki is facing the chance of a lifetime if he can just make sure that Fumino and Rizu excel and get into the schools they want to attend. He comes prepared to tutor them, but he isn’t prepared for burgeoning high school romance! Sparks begin to fly, no matter how much Nariyuki tries to avoid it—and things get even more complicated when a third girl joins the study group! 

 Rating: Teen +

Volumes Read: 3

My Thoughts: I love the premise of this one. The two girls are geniuses when it comes to certain subjects, too bad it’s not the subjects they want to go to college for. I like how Nariyuki recognizes their strengths and shows them how to apply it to subjects they’re struggling with. For example, he shows Rizu how to pull out the thing not important in English/literature to get to the heart of the story. And with Fumino he shows that math still has its own language and heart to it. I even enjoyed the friendship he has with them. However, the fanservice and the need to throw Nariyuki into compromising situations over and over again makes any semblance of a plot disappear. By volume two, the only storyline really left is how many ways Nariyuki ends up in up in inappropriate situations with the girls, including his teacher.  The fanservice is not overly detailed aka barbie doll nake type; it’s nothing that teens couldn’t handle but with the lack of a plot it got rather tiresome. Generally, I would say skip it. There are others with similar premises that have an actual plotline. 

 

The Quintessential Quintuplets by Negi Haruba

One day, a poor high school second-year named Futaro Uesugi comes across a private tutoring gig with good pay. But his pupils are his classmates!! And they’re quintuplets!! They’re all gorgeous girls, but they’re troublemakers who hate to study and are on the verge of flunking out! And his first task is simply gaining the sisters’ trust?! Every day is a party! 

 Rating: Teen +

Volumes Read: 3

 My Thoughts: Speaking of similar topics but better…The Quintessential Quintuplets is the same basic concept, but better. This one is teen+ but honestly, it’s not been that bad so far. There is still some fanservice, especially in the first volume, but it’s mainly cleavage shots. However, they never drop the plot and there isn’t a lot of putting Futaro in compromising situations. (Okay, there is one, but it’s mainly used by one of the quints to get him fired!) I enjoyed the friendship that is blooming between him and most of the quints. Futaro can also be a class-A jerk, but the quints do call him on it (often). He does fall in love and marry one of them, but at this point, that’s the whole mystery/what you’re also trying to figure out. This one is firmly on my recommend list. 

 

Here are some manga currently on my pile for future reviews (either TBR or waiting for additional volumes):

  • Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle
  • Love in Focus
  • Hatsu* Haru
  • Ao Haru Ride

Got a series you’d like me to check out? Leave the name in the comments and I’ll add it to my list!

 

Manga Reviews (7)