Graphic Novel Review: Pilu of the Woods

Pilu of the Woods by Mai K. Nguyen
Pilu of the Woods 
by Mai K. Nguyen

4 out of 5 stars on GoodReads


Willow has a fight with her sister, and runs out to the woods where she used to go hiking with her mother. She meets a tree spirit named Pilu, who has run away from her grove, and the two form a friendship and help one another navigate their turbulent emotions.

Both girls are struggling with loneliness and anger, and they are remorseful after arguing with their families, but don’t know how to stop. When Willow’s emotional monsters begin to take on a real form, the two girls are in danger, until Pilu discovers how to resolve the emotional pain both girls are hiding.
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Comic Review: Batman and the Justice League

Batman and the Justice League Vol. 1 by Shiori Teshirogi
Batman and the Justice League Vol. 1 
by Shiori Teshirogi

3 out of 5 stars on GoodReads


Justice League done in a manga style? Yes, please!
A young boy from Japan comes to Gotham City looking for his missing parents, and becomes the unwitting victim of a devious plot involving the Joker. Only Batman and the Justice League can solve the mysteries of the boy’s missing parents, and the enigmatic power leaking from magical ley lines around the globe.

I enjoyed reading this manga of the Justice League!
However, I didn’t like some of the characters. Batman has never been my favorite, and I HATE the Joker. I can’t even look at his ugly face. But I liked the story and the other characters. I would enjoy reading it more if it focused more on Superman, who is a favorite superhero of mine. Continue reading

Manga Review: The Lion and the Bride

The Lion and the Bride Vol. 1 by Mika Sakurano
The Lion and the Bride Vol. 1 
by Mika Sakurano

4 out of 5 stars on GoodReads


Yua is dating her high school teacher, and when her grandmother dies, she has nowhere to go, so she marries her teacher, but he has a secret past that will threaten their married bliss.

This manga is just so ridiculously silly that I ended up loving it! I mean, the whole situation of marrying a teacher is already fraught with impossible scenarios, and this manga takes it to a whole new level of hilarious drama.  Continue reading

Manga Review: La Magnifique Grande Scene

La Magnifique Grande Scène, Vol. 1 by Cuvie
La Magnifique Grande Scène, Vol. 1 
by Cuvie

5 out 5 stars on GoodReads


Kanade is a young girl when she sees her neighbor, Risa, dancing in the ballet, and begs her parents for ballet lessons. She quickly learns that studying ballet means hard work, determination, and sometimes disappointment. With Risa’s help, Kanade is encouraged to stay dedicated to ballet, and she uses her intense observation skills to learn from the dancers around her.
Later with two years of dancing experience, she longs to be allowed to wear pointe shoes, but is told she is still too young. Despite the drama surrounding the other students, Kanade finds her own inspiration and her own center as she prepares for her big recital.

I LOVED the beautiful artwork in this manga! The graceful dance poses, and lovely costumes make this a pleasure to read, and I found myself pausing on several pages just to enjoy the gorgeous illustrations.
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Manga Review: Romeo and Juliet

Manga Classics by Crystal S. Chan
Manga Classics: Romeo and Juliet 
by Crystal S. Chan (Adapter)William ShakespeareJulien Choy (Artist)

3 out of 5 stars on GoodReads

With all the original dialogue of the play, this manga adaptation of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet bursts with old enchantment and romantic drama. The illustrations flow from one panel to the next in a surge of emotional tension, and the action keeps the wordy dialogue from weighing down the storyline.

This would be a great way to introduce Shakespeare to younger audiences, since the dialogue is easier to understand along with the action of the panels. Continue reading

Graphic Novel Review: The Lost Path

The Lost Path by Amélie Fléchais
The Lost Path 
by Amélie Fléchais

2 out of 5 stars

Three little boys follow a treasure hunt, misread their map, and get lost in the darkest part of the forest. They meet odd creatures, see strange sights, and try to avoid the dark powers of the forest. It’s pretty grim and violent at times. The plot lacks cohesion, and I had to read the ending twice to try to understand just what had happened.
The illustrations are sometimes lovely, sometimes bland. Some of the pages are in color, others are in black and white.
I was not impressed with the story. It jumped all over the place with no real explanations of what was actually happening or why.
I liked the whimsical characters at first, but quickly got bored with them as they repeated the same things again and again. Continue reading

Manga Review: Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

Manga Classics by Crystal Chan
Manga Classics: Adventures of Huckleberry Finn 
by Crystal Chan (Goodreads Author) (Adapted by)Kuma Chan (Art by)Jeannie Lee (Lettering)Mark Twain (Original novel)

4 out of 5 stars on GoodReads

A wonderful adaptation of Mark Twain’s Adventure of Huckleberry Finn into manga form! I think the authors and illustrators did an excellent job of condensing the story into a small volume without losing the integrity or flavor of the story. I love how the various accents of the characters are preserved, but the dialogue is still clear and easily understood.

The artwork brings a lot of emotion into the story, and firmly connects the reader to the characters. Seeing the expressions on character’s faces as they experience joy, grief, fear, sadness, or relief, made me feel those things too as I was reading!
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Manga Review: Dream of the Butterfly

Dream of The Butterfly Vol 1 by Richard Marazano
Dream of The Butterfly Vol 1: Rabbits on the Moon 
by Richard MarazanoLuo Yin (Illustrator)

3 out of 5 stars

Little Tutu is lost in a snowstorm and travels to a magical land where animals talk and humans aren’t welcome. She is forced to work in a factory, and befriends several groups that need her help to rebel against the emperor. But Tutu is just trying to find her way back home, and the emperor asks her bring him a rare spring butterfly with mysterious powers.

I liked the imaginative characters and setting, but the plot is jumping all over the place and there’s not really enough time spent on any

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