My Thoughts On: Yoki Koto Kiku by Koge-Donbo

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Title: Yoki Koto Kiku

Author: Koge-Donbo

Publisher: Broccoli Books

Year Published: 2006

Format: Paperback

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Synopsis:

In the ancient House of Nekogami, sibling rivalry is a game of life and death. The family patriarch is dead, and his grandson Sukekiyo is the rightful heir. There’s just one problem — Sukekiyo is away at war, his fate unknown. Only one person can inherit the family fortune, and the triplets Yoki, Koto, and Kiku won’t let Sukekiyo’s fiancée, Tamayo, walk away with everything. With a fortune at stake, it’s kill or be killed as the Nekogami clan goes up against demons, thieves, and each other to protect the family — and the cash! – (Goodreads)

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My Thoughts:

Yoki Koto Kiku is a one-shot manga that has been on my shelf, unread, for about as long as it’s publication date in English… I don’t know why. I really enjoyed what I have read of one of Koge-Donbo’s other works Pita-Ten (I’m on volume four), so I had relatively high expectations for this manga. Unfortunately, it fell short.

The art is what I have come to expect from this author’s works – very cute and cuddly characters. I find the character designs to be very refreshing, like a spring time breeze carrying the soft sent of flowers, as it is very dissimilar to the other manga-artists styles I normally read. I will say this, if you don’t like chibi, super adorable, characters then the art in here (or most of this author’s books) is not for you.

The story, while entertaining, was very bland. It follows the course of the siblings as they fight over the family inheritance in order to achieve their own dreams and when I say fight, they are trying to murder each other. Not to mention trying to kill their older brother’s fiancé whilst hoping he dies in war, so he can’t claim the money for himself. The story is broken up mainly into four chapters, three of which focus on each individual triplet. This was a good idea in order to get the reader more invested in the characters, but it just didn’t seem to pan out. The chapters just weren’t long enough and though they were slightly humorous, they just had no development. I was left feeling like everything was disjointed and randomly strewn about, especially when you through in the fourth chapter which mostly follows a soldier who had mistaken Yoki as his sister. Overall, all I liked that chapter probably the most, but it didn’t seem to offer to much to the story as a whole.

So, while I found the art to be candy-coated and refreshing, and the story vaguely comical, it did not offer anything new to the manga scene. I would recommend this manga if you just won’t a quick, light read – something to entertain you for about an hour, but nothing so engaging that you will remember it for years to come. If you don’t read Yoki Koto Kiku you probably aren’t missing much, yet, as I stated, it is an easy, quick-paced read.

Rating: 3 out of 5

My Thoughts On: Classical Medley by Sanae Kana

Classical Medley vol. 1 & 2 (complete series)

By Sanae Kana

Published by CMX

I picked up Classical Medley at a local comic book store (which is now sadly closed) based nearly solely on the art style. I thought it was cute and reminiscent of works by Koge-Donbo, such as Pita-Ten and Kamichama Karin. Outside of the art I knew almost next to nothing about the story that this two manga series would contain and I, honestly, did not hold overly high expectations for it. It surprised me.

Classical Medley is the story of a young knight whom under certain circumstances must protect the youngest prince of Kingdom Classical from the threat of death. Along with their Moon Dragon companion they set off on a journey to seek the aid of the young prince’s older brother in hopes that he can set things right, but will they be able to distinguish friend from foe? What exactly is going on in Kingdom Classical? And what about the mysterious Medley that has started it all?

I can’t say that this is my favorite manga series, because it’s not, but it was worth reading. The art was consistent and cleanly drawn. I had no trouble identifying one character from the other, which is something that is happened to me before with graphic novels. However, I should say, that if you are looking for extravagant and detailed art this may not be the place to like as the author’s style for this series is simple and plain.

Okay, let’s talk story. The story contained within the pages of this series reflects the art well, simple and plain. There is nothing overly complicated about it and is easily predictable, but it was enough to keep me entertained. I wish it had been a longer series as there were so many things that could have been expanded on, especially character development, which landed kind of flat. The story and characters just didn’t feel like they were used to their full potential. It’s safe to say that if you are looking for a manga with lots of twists and turns, and surprises this probably isn’t what you are looking for, but if you are looking for something quick and relaxed this may be for you.

Rating: 3 out of 5