Based on Astro Boy by Osamu Tezuka
A beloved robot and a man are murdered and have their bodies staged in similar manners, but what do they have to do with each other? Enter Geischt, one of Europol’s best detectives, who happens to also be a sentient robot. He discovers that someone or something is out to destroy the world’s seven best robots, and he’s one of them. The first target was a wilderness loving gentle giant. Another target is a fierce killing machine who has a second life as a Butler fit an eccentric movie score composer who wants nothing to do with a destructive menace. Geischt suspects another target is a robot skilled at hand-to-hand combat and adoptive father to many children. Geischt must fighter out who the remaining targets are and how to stop the killer before all of them, including himself, are destroyed.
Illustrations by Marcos Martín & Muntsa Vicente
Friday and her childhood friend, Lancelot Jones, solved many mysteries around their small town. When it came time for college, Friday chooses a school out of town. The day before she leaves, she and Lancelot had an embarrassing moment that Friday dwells on for months away at college. Now, it’s the winter holidays, and Friday is home visiting family. Lancelot is on the case, as always, and she is swept up again in the same old routine of finding clues and solving the mystery. She’s dismayed that Lancelot is treating her just the same, reverting back to before she messed everything up. Something about this case is very different than the others, though, as there seems to be a mysterious spirit involved that Lancelot may know more about than he’s leading on. The case and clues really pick up, and Lancelot leaves traces letting Friday know to come back to their headquarters in the woods, but that’s when everything goes from bad to the absolute worst.
Illustrated by Sean Phillips, colored by Elizabeth Breitweiser
Charlie is up on a ranch in Ojai where they are continuing to reshoot the movie with young starlet Maya standing in for Val. The official story from the studio is that Val killed herself, but Charlie knows she was murdered. He is still trying to find a producer with horn-rimmed glasses who might know something about what happened, but producers are dime a dozen and his description matches so many people in this town. Despite his better judgment, Charlie starts to fall for Maya, who is in a staged relationship with her co-star to drum up press for the film. But the young man runs his new car into an embankment and lands himself in the hospital. Gil also drums up plenty of trouble for a man who is supposed to be laying low.
Adapted by Naoshi Arakawa
After the strange disappearance of Mitsuru and an ominous trail of blood where he was, the seven remaining students try to solve the mystery of their situation with some heightened anxiety. Shimizu theorizes that this situation is like the Langoliers Incident, and they’ve been pulled into the subconscious of the person who committed suicide. The others reject her notion as foolish and too much like a Stephen King novel. Shimizu finds Takano alone in the hallway, trying to figure out who committed suicide. Shimizu recounts her friendship with Takano, their friendly rivalry, and ultimately her plans for her future, but soon realizes that this isn’t Takano. Later, then real Takano and Akihito discuss the premise of this predicament: maybe they’re being punished by the person who committed suicide because they didn't do enough to save their classmate.
Illustrated by Trish Forstner
Sophie is a nervous dog who classically can’t remember much after it happens to her. She’s introduced to a group of dogs in a new house, and they terrify her. The nicest of the bunch, Rusty, recognizes her fears and protects Sophie. He gives her a tour of the home, including the room they’re not allowed to go into. Snippets of traumatic memories start coming back to Sophie, prompting other dogs to also remember some of their pasts, with owners who were not their current master, who all happen to be female and usually alone. Through this, the dogs discover their happy home with plenty of food and treats is not a safe place to be, for animals or humans.
Dr. Tenma is a gifted neurosurgeon working at a hospital in Germany. He immigrated because he was impressed by the hospital’s research, and planned to spend much time researching for himself. Tenma’s Chief of Surgery believes that hospitals should be all about research, making money, and preserving their own reputation, so much so that Tenma inadvertently has a patient die because he was attending to a more prestigious patient. When the next major call pits a little boy up against the Mayor, Tenma disobeys the direct order to save the Mayor first, and saves the little boy. Years later, this decision has drastic consequences for Tenma’s life, including him being a suspected serial killer!
High school student Senri Nakajou hasn't fully grappled with what happened the night his parents were murdered. Senri's twin brother, Kazuto, told him to hide - said he'd take Dad's abuse that night - but Senri would still feel it. Their special bond as twins visited all the pains the other felt, as well as flashes of what the other was seeing as it happened. But Dad didn't hit anyone. Instead, a man broke into the house, murdered Mom and Dad, and kidnapped Kazuto. Now, as a teenager, Senri caught a glimpse of the man who may have ultimately murdered his brother too - a scar on his arm in the shape of the Kanji for Fire. Senri sets off across the country to track down this Fire Man and, hopefully, find out what happened to his brother.
Vol 4: The Crystal Kingdom by Clint, Griffin, Justin, and Travis McElroy, illustrated by Carey Pietsch
The trio is on another mission to bring back another relic, a transmutation stone that is acting kind of like King Midas. It's currently on a floating laboratory that is slowly being consumed by pink crystal that transforms everything it touches. With their favorite team of Regulators (including Killian and Carey), they travel to the laboratory in special space suits to keep out any crystal particles that might transform them. They have to find the transmutation stone and save the laboratory before it's engines can't handle the weight and it crashes to the planet below, which will turn all of that into crystal too. Just in case that isn't all too complicated, Kravitz, an agent of Death, tags along to try to right the wrongs of people escaping death, which includes most of the people on the laboratory!
Adapted by Naoshi Arakawa
On a record-breaking snowy day, eight classmates arrive at school like it's any other school day. When no one else shows up, including their teacher, they begin to wonder why. They check the doors and windows - all sealed shut - and realize the clocks and their watches have all stopped at the same time - 5:53. A mysterious phone call plays back voices of frantic adults, and they finally put it all together; they are stuck in the moment when one of their classmates took their own life, two months ago on the last day of the school's festival. The problem is, none of them can remember who it was who committed suicide. When something unexpected happens to one of them, they realize they are in a race against time and a potentially malicious spirit to regain their memories and piece together what happened.
Vol 3: Petals to the Metal! by Clint, Griffin, Justin, and Travis McElroy, illustrated by Carey Pietsch
The trio is back on another assignment, this time to find the Gaia Sash, which has been put to use by a thief named Raven who has holed up in a vault in the city of Goldcliff. The three meet a local cop, Hurley, who has a connection with Raven and might be able to help them slow her down. Hurley and Raven were racing teammates in the highly dangerous Battlewagon races that are super popular (and super illegal) in Goldcliff. Raven escapes the tower, but Hurley knows Raven will be in the next Battlewagon race. The only way to get to Raven is for the three heroes and Hurley to form a new battlewagon team and try to take her down in the race, and watch out for the twelve other teams trying to take down and beat them!
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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