In a universe inspired by Osamu Tezuka's original work, Princess Sapphire must hide that she's a girl and make herself invaluable to the Robots in order to protect her people and her kingdom. But something breaks her and reveals her secret, and now she's sailing the universe as the fearsome captain of a pirate ship! When she stumbles upon a refuge for humans and robots and meets the mysterious Fire, she and her crew become tangled in the survival of these refugees and possibly a greater fate for the universe.
Illustrated by Rachel Distler, colored by Francesco Montalbano
A group of young orphan adventure seekers put together an investigation force to figure out some of the strange happenings around their town. One of their first cases is for their friend whose parents seem to have been replaced by lookalikes who are werewolves, but their investigation proves there is more than they first believed. Meanwhile, Mr. Jacob, who runs their orphanage, has a mysterious past that isn’t just connected to his history of making scary movies, and his daughter, Marysia, is recovering memories from her childhood that don’t add up. To complicate matters further, a hunter named Greta shows up in town to hunt the werewolves, and she also has some history with Mr. Jacob that isn’t all friendly.
The goodwill tournament continues between the Kyoto and Tokyo jujutsu schools but it becomes clear very quickly that the Kyoto students have been given orders to kill Itadori. Todo, a strong student from the Kyoto school, takes Itadori on and challenges him to rethink what he knows about how he harnesses cursed energy The students square off against each other instead of fight the demons that have been released around the arena. We learn of Panda’s true nature and what makes him so special as he battles a student from Kyoto who has a similar situation. Maki and Mai come face to face and they use the battle to settle a familial dispute that has been raging for years.
Illustrated by George Kambadais, colored by Josh Burcham, lettered by Ed Dukeshire
Five friends from our world have been transported to the land of the Forgotten Realms and, after fighting so many monsters and escaping many times from the Big Bad, Venger, they’re looking forward to possibly having a good night’s rest along with their pal Uni the Unicorn. But their sleep is interrupted when monsters attack their camp and a portal opens up. On the other side, find themselves in Waterdeep and trying to save a young girl cursed with Wild Magic that can surge at any time, a labyrinth with Beholders, and other monsters that test them to their limits!
In this collection of short stories, Takeda explores love and humanity in some non-traditional ways. In the first story, a young princess is captired and blindfolded and forced to sign treaties or make other deals that syphon away her power. the only person who shows her kindness during her captivity is a man with no pinky. During the three months of captivity, she can feel herself falling in love. In another story, a woman comes face to face with her stalker and has an honest conversation with him while they wait for the police. Another story with a historical setting focused on an emperor on his wedding night where he became entangled with an empress-assassin, and how they both found happiness in the end. In another story, explorers think they've found a "treasure" in the jungle, but it's a delicious new fruit instead of gold. But not understanding the native language costs them dearly. A short interlude piece spanning only a few pages focused on a vending machine and the apocalypse. In yet another story, a wife who is dying of cancer makes a difficult choice for her husband so that he might live on easier without her once she's gone.
Suiren is a beautiful, mysterious young girl starting high school and the object of many young men’s crushes. She’s quiet, mysterious, and keeps to herself often. They liken her and nickname her “mysterious flower” because of her beauty and aloofness. One day, shy but tough Kawasumi stands up for her against several bullies, and she finds herself smitten. Kawasumi’s problem mirrors Suiren’s - he doesn’t know how to talk to girls, while Suiren doesn’t know how to talk to boys without sending them into emotional tizzies. The two bounce off each other in various high school situations - class field trips, navigating other students having crushes on them - and they might start to drift closer to one another as they realize a mutual attraction.
Asari is on the receiving end of the bullying she wrought upon Tsugu when she first came back into town, and she does not enjoy the taste of her own medicine. Tsugu, Sora, and Yuushin all stay at the restaurant after the boxing exam since Yuushin rescued a kitten, reminding them all of childhood sleepovers. In the morning, Tsugu goes to a studio where her Pop is working to play her guitar with him, but receives some devastating news about her family dynamic. The friends finally travel back and reconnect back at the base of the Golden Sheep and regain some closure by digging up their time capsule.
Illustrated by Wes Craig, colored by Jason Wordie, lettered by Tom Napolitano
After their village and civilization is destroyed, Kaya is tasked by her dying uncle to take her half-brother, Jin, across the world to Monk Islands. There, he will be safe and be able to communicate with the gods and gain his promised powers. Once he comes into his own, he will be powerful enough to destroy the evil Atrian Empire and restore humanity to glory. But along the way, Kaya reunites with a childhood friend and supposed betrothed, Seth of the Lizard Riders. They’ve been tasked with killing a fierce beast, the Magron, and could use Kaya’s strength and magical arm. Jin despises the detour, but the money could bring them much needed supplies, as long as they survive the fight and aren't betrayed along the way.
Illustrated by Chris Shehan
Best friends Kenny and Ted live in a small town in Ohio in the 1980s. Ted plays on the baseball team, and Kenny is trying to hide the fact that he's gay and has a crush on his best friend. One day, they find an advertisement for wish-granting glasses in the back of an old comicbook. They think nothing more of it until the specs arrive, un-summoned. When they decide to use a wish to make the town bully disappear, they start down a dark path of wishes as they try to fix their mistake, and as Kenny tries to make life better for himself and Ted. Rarely does any wish turn out without unintended consequences, so Kenny descends into an out-of-control spiral of wishes and ramifications.
Reiji is trapped in his small town life. His brother is a shut-in who constantly berates their mother; his grandmother is suffering from dementia and is the main reason his mother is so tired; and his mom sets him up with a construction job for after high school, effectively killing any aspirations he had of leaving. One night, while out buying food, Reiji realizes that the shop clerk is actually Nagi Aoe, a famous idol singer from a band he enjoys escaping to. She asks him for a tour around town, which he gives her on the back of his bike. At one point, while stopped in a bridge overlooking the town's river, she asks Reiji if he’ll enter a suicide pact with her, similarly to the heroes in a tragic story based on the town. They wind up back at her house where she takes his virginity. Afterwards, Reiji can’t stop thinking about her, her wish to die, and whether he would be better off dead as well.
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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