Manga Maniac Cafe

A blog for all things bookish

One-Punch Man, Vol. 10

One-Punch Man, Vol. 10 - ONE 4 stars

review to follow

My Hero Academia, Vol. 4

My Hero Academia, Vol. 4 - Kohei Horikoshi dnf @ 50%

I give up on this one. I don't care who wins the sports festival. I am not engaged in the plot at all.

Honey So Sweet, Vol. 5

Honey So Sweet, Vol. 5 - Amu Meguro 3.75 stars

Kind of torn about this one because of the weird, awkward mom gropes Nao scene. I mean - really?

Full review to follow

Bound for Eden

Bound for Eden - Tess LeSue 3.5 stars

This was a mixed bag for me. I thought it dragged a bit, I wasn't fond of the clueless hero, and I didn't feel invested until about the halfway point.

full review to follow

Honey So Sweet, Vol. 4

Honey So Sweet, Vol. 4 - Amu Meguro 4 stars

This is a cute series. Hopefully the love triangle is over?

full review to follow

Tyler Johnson Was Here

Tyler Johnson Was Here - Jay Coles 3.25 stars

Review to follow

My Hero Academia, Vol. 3

My Hero Academia, Vol. 3 - Kohei Horikoshi 2.75 stars

This series isn't doing anything for me. I will give it one more volume, and then move on if it doesn't drastically improve for me. There are too many books sitting on my TBR mountain to keep revisiting something that isn't holding my interest

Most Magnificent Thing, The

Most Magnificent Thing, The - Ashley Spires 3.25 stars

Binky: License to Scratch: 5

Binky: License to Scratch: 5 - Ashley Spires 4 stars

Binky and the gang are back for another humorous adventure. After being dropped off that the vet for boarding while their humans are away, Binky, Gordon, and Gracie have to face down the aliens and the professor who is working on their behalf. Quick, fun read.

Haikyu!!, Vol. 22

Haikyu!!, Vol. 22 - Haruichi Furudate 3.75 stars

review to follow

One-Punch Man, Vol. 6

One-Punch Man, Vol. 6 - ONE 4.5 stars

full review to follow

Dread Nation

Dread Nation - Justina Ireland 4.25 stars

Bravo! I did not see that coming.

Full Review

I am a sucker for zombie books, so when I heard about Dread Nation, I was all over it. This is set in an alternate America, when the dead started walking – and eating the living – during Gettysburg. That kind of put the brakes on the strife between the States, and they settled the Civil War to band together and fight the dead. Jane, the protagonist, was born just before the dead rose up, and she hasn’t known any other life than one that involves fighting the undead.

Jane is an interesting character. Her mother is white, and she is black. The midwife assisting in her birth tried to kill her, and no one would have blamed her if she had. Jane’s mother is the richest white woman in Haller County, Kentucky, and the fact that she gave birth to a Negro is scandalous beyond belief. Auntie Aggie saves her, and Jane’s life is never going to be normal after that.

While not advertising that Jane is her daughter, her mother keeps her close at hand, and she even hides her when they round up the Negro children and send them off to combat schools to learn to fight the dead. Jane ends up at Miss Preston’s School of Combat in Baltimore anyway, where she is training to be an Attendant. Once they graduate, the students are hired by rich white women to protect them from the undead. While Jane is terrible at etiquette, she excels at combat, and she’s training hard so she can return home to Rose Hill and help defend it from the zombies. She doesn’t count on getting caught up in a conspiracy by the Mayor of Baltimore and being sent out to the god-forsaken wilderness of Kansas, where she is expected to help defend Summerland against the endless swarms of the undead.

I really enjoyed Dread Nation. Jane is a young woman without agency. She is oppressed by the whites who yearn for a return to the old ways, and who believe the undead are a punishment from God for ending slavery and unsettling the natural order of things. Jane, despite being constantly robbed of her own life choices, battles for her own agency through her wits and her own stubborn will. She refuses to allow her oppressors to hold her down, and she constantly outwits their attempts to keep her subjugated.

I hated most of the adults in this book. They are mostly evil, opportunist monsters who take advantage of children. I was waiting eagerly for their comeuppance, whether at the hand of our heroine or at the hands of the undead. I wasn’t disappointed. Hooray!

I did not see the big revelation at the end coming, and now I am kicking myself for missing all of the clues that lead up to it. Bravo for that.

While this is the first book in a trilogy, it left off in a good spot. I’m not dying at the thought of waiting a year to catch up with Jane and her friends, but I definitely know that there are many more harrowing adventures left for them. Dread Nation gave me a new perspective on life for a marginalized young woman who isn’t willing to settle for the place society has deemed she fits into, while providing plenty of entertaining zombie action as well.

Grade: 4.25 stars

The Shark and I

The Shark and I - Cara Lockwood 4 stars

This was really cute. not much depth, but the narrator was so entertaining that I didn't want to stop listening to it

Bakuman, Volume 7: Gag and Serious

Bakuman, Volume 7: Gag and Serious - Tsugumi Ohba, Takeshi Obata, Tetsuichiro Miyaki 4 stars

review to follow

Bakuman, Volume 6: Recklessness and Guts

Bakuman, Volume 6: Recklessness and Guts - Tsugumi Ohba, Takeshi Obata, Tetsuichiro Miyaki 4 stars

Moritaka is learning that being a full time manga artist and attending high school is tough. And he and Miho actually had conversations that were more than 4 words long. In PERSON. Wow - what a development.

Full review to follw

My Hero Academia, Vol. 2

My Hero Academia, Vol. 2 - Caleb D. Cook, Kouhei Horikoshi 3 stars

full review to follow

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