Manga Reviews: From puppets in love to crazy aliens!

Eden: It’s An Endless World Volume 1
Story & Art: Hiroki Endo
Translations: Kumar Sivasubramanian
Publisher: Dark Horse

I’ll be honest and say that what initially peeked my interest about this book was that gorgeous cover. It’s reminiscent of something Katsuhiro Otomo would have drawn back in his Memories book. The Wonderful character designs and technology all blended into one, hell at first glance I thought this was nothing more than a rip-off Otomo book. But it’s so much more than that, so much more. Enoah and Hannah are two kids around the age of fifteen, living in and around a Biosphere facility along with their mentor Layne. Layne is a man suffering from late-stage symptoms of a disease that is wiping out all of humanity in the future. We learn in flashbacks, that their parents were part of a group of scientists and military officers that gathered in the sterile base to escape the disease. But something went wrong, and now the three of them are the only ones left. The kids are immune, and as they get closer to adulthood, they are wondering whether to stay there or venture out into the unknown world and see if there are any other survivors. The second half of the story we fast-forward 20 years in the future and are introduced to Enoah’s son Elijah. He’s just a lonely guy trying to find his own worth and wanting to be with a woman. It is a very intriguing story, with some gorgeous art, violent action, and a question about where your place is on Earth. The characters of Eden are very meticulously drawn and there are some fantastic technological details found in these pages, the humanoid creatures are creepy and would make Steven Spielberg proud. This book was great and I highly anticipate the next volume. A-

Midori Days Volume 8
Story & Art: Kazurou Inoue
Translation: JN Production
Publisher: Viz

Before I jump on the review of the final installment of Midori Days, I figure a little background information is called for. Our protagonist is High school delinquent Seiji Sawamura, who is desperate to have a girlfriend, especially after being rejected by 20 girls as of late. Like most guys, he’s afraid that he will end his life with his right hand as his only companion. Apparently, that doesn’t change when one day he wakes up and discovers that his right hand has become a puppet version of a girl named Midori Kasugano, who confesses that she has had a crush on him for the last three years. Somehow when Midori’s body was put in a coma, her soul gets transported to his right hand. Since his right was known as the Devil’s Right Hand because of his fighting skills, he now has to hide the tiny girl torso from everyone and can’t punch his way out of situations. Sounds like a weird set-up and let me tell you it is. I didn’t know how this book could go on for eight volumes, because I really thought it had just one hook, but everything you can think of is addressed in all eight volumes. I think the supporting cast really made these books work. Shuichi alone could carry the book, him and his disturbing obsession with toys (hits close to home). My problem with the ending is that it didn’t have enough closure for me, it seems like they just ended abruptly. They finally admit their love for each other and the ending is left open. I guess after 8 volumes I wanted a little more. It’s was good to see her in her real body though. B-

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