Vol 1: Before the Storm, translated by Greg Pak, illustrated by Keng, lettered (English edition) by Joe Caramagna
In an extremely non-linear plot line, we are introduced to Lei Ling, also known as Aero, a hero in Shanghai who has control over the air. When she’s not flying around her beloved city, Ling is an architect who designs homes for Shanghai citizens. Aero is currently battling animated buildings, some of which she designed, and desperately trying to stop a floating city from crashing into Shanghai. In the alternating scenes, we see glimpses of Ling’s past, where she and her boyfriend dine at a fancy restaurant just before he might get the courage and opportunity to propose to her, but she has to sneak away to save some folks trapped in a cyclone on a ferry. And then we meet Aero’s mentor, Madame Huang, who Aero is battling in the present while past Ling meets her for the first time.
Askelaad and his forces, including Thorfinn, have become entwined with the Danish forces laying siege to England in the early 1000s. They first try to invade London, but a turncoat Viking is helping fortify London’s channel. Askelaad sends Thorfinn to bring back the head of this traitor, Thorkell, but Thorfinn only succeeds in cutting off a few fingers. Askelaad’s forces then save the Danish prince from being captured by Thorkell, and all they can think about is the reward from the king for saving his son. Askelaad leads his men into Wales where he has some allies, and we learn more about his lineage, which is impressive and surprising. Thorfinn is assigned to guard the prince, but Thorfinn can’t get over how weak and feminine this prince is.
Nightfall enlists Twilight’s help on a new mission: retrieve a painting from a private collection that may have some secrets that could rekindle the war. In order to get their hands on it, they have to win an underground tennis tournament full of tricks and cheating. Nightfall has some ulterior motives though, and hopes to win Twilight over with her amazing skills so he leaves Yor behind. After the tournament, Nightfall challenges Yor to a tennis match in order to continue to prove her point, but Yor ends of shattering Nightfall’s racket! After tennis is over, it’s back to Anya trying to befriend Damien. The Imperial Scholar mixer is coming up, and without eight Stella Stars, neither Anya not Damien will have an invite, which also means Twilight won’t have a chance to meet and introduce himself to his main mission’s target. It’s time to take matters into his own hands!
Citizens of the Great Tokyo Empire are somewhat struggling to survive, and they violently take over rescue ships and any other humanitarian aide. It’s all in the name of their new savior and emperor, Akira, who blesses them with his presence at least once a day. His right-hand-man, Tetsuo, is really calling all the shots as Akira doesn’t seem to care about ruling over tons of people. On the other side of the destroyed Neo-Tokyo is Lady Mikago’s temple, where she welcomes in refugees and all sorts of folk, and blesses them with her presence at least two times a day. Caught in the middle of these two factions is everyone else: Kei and Chiyoko, who are trying to keep Number 27 (Masaru) and Number 25 (Kikuyo) safe, the Colonel, who also wants the kids safe but is also trying to stop Akira and Tetsuo, and a number of other loose factions trying to keep alive in this barren, desolate city.
A fishing boat off the coast capsizes as a result of an encounter with the Monster, so it’s go time for Asa and Kasuga! That is, when Agent A-Kura can get back to his car after it was towed for illegal parking. Yone wants to bring Asa along for her talent agency audition for moral support, but Asa has to find Kasuga and get the plane up in the air as soon as possible. Kasuga's gone missing - he's off chasing a no-good reporter who has taken roles of photos of Asa, their plane, and their supply of munitions. Then, Asa’s little brother comes down with a sickness and A-Kura offers to take him to the doctor. Nakaido is frantically searching through the notes of Professor Yodogawa for anything that might be helpful, and when he thinks he might be close to the creature’s weakness, he goes up in the plane with Asa in Kasuga’s place.
Vol 1 (2021): Only Death is Eternal, illustrated by Esad Ribić, colored by Matthew Wilson
The story opens up on the resurrection of Ikaris, the last of the Eternals to be “woken” again. He is given instructions to release Sprite, an eternal who caused a lot of problems for the Eternals recently and has been “reset.” The two travel to the main city of The Eternals and soon find Prime Eternal Zurus has been murdered. This isn’t a majorly big deal because he’ll be resurrected soon, but then they find out The Machine, the system that keeps Earth alive and maintains The Eternals, has been sabotaged, including the mechanism to revive Eternals. There’s no shortage of suspects who would want to bring down Eternals and/or destroy the Earth. Together with Sersi, Thana, Ikaris, Sprite, and a few others try to track down the traitor while keeping humans safe and alive.
Volume five continues the storyline we had in volume four, where Tanjiro and Inosuke are battling a family of spider demons. Father has gotten into the fight, and neither slayer can cut this demon with their katanas. Tanjiro and Inosuke get separated, and Tanjiro finds himself face to face with one of the Twelve Kizuki, the most powerful demons. Nezuko, in an effort to save Tanjiro, discovers a special power she has with her demon blood. Rui, the most powerful of the spider demons, becomes jealous of the familial bond between Tanjiro and Nezuko, and it angers him even more. Tanjiro’s katana breaks, while both of Inosuke’s katanas break battling Father. Giyu, the slayer from volume one, makes a triumphant comeback and saves Tanjiro from certain death. We also meet a new slayer, Shinobu, whose breathing methods take inspiration from insects, and who uses poisons to take down powerful demons.
The young warrior Thorfinn is shackled to the ship of a Viking Raider, Askelaad. Askelaad's fleet of three ships successfully raids a settlement as mercenaries and recovers all the treasure for themselves before headed back to their village for the winter. Thorfinn has become a powerful and fast warrior, but treasure and ransacking towns doesn't interest him. He wants revenge on Askelaad for killing his father and stealing their ship. Thorfinn's childhood started in a peaceful fishing village full of proud Vikings. They were often visited by the explorer Lief Erickson, who would regale the children with stories of the beautiful country of Vinland, a place where winters are mild and the ground is fertile. After getting his revenge, Thorfinn would love to find the legendary country of Vinland.
Colonel Shikishima is used as the latest scapegoat to explain why the Sol rocket was used and parts of the city destroyed, and he loses his command. Despite the disgrace, the soldiers are still severely loyal to him, and he employs his forces to help recover Akira before the boy fully awakens. Kei and Kaneda try to bring Akira to a safe place, but they find themselves being betrayed by someone they thought an ally. The Colonel uses the three super-powered children to track Akira, while Lady Miyako deploys three of her own children to bring Akira to her. All of these opposing parties chase each other through the streets of Neo-Tokyo during a city-wide lockdown, which means the protector robots are also after them all for breaking curfew.
The four members of the Blue Team - Goggles, Specs, Headphones, and Bobble hat - battle against other squads to see who can cover the most area with their team’s ink color. These competitors are in humanoid form, but they can also change into their other form: inklings, little squid-type creatures. The Blue Team members are all lower ranked than their opponents, but through hard work, teamwork, lots of practice, and some silliness, they prove they can hang with the best S rank teams.
I've been reading manga and comicbooks for years. Now, I write reviews and other helpful things for School Librarians, teachers, parents, and students.
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