Monday, February 06, 2017

Reviewing the Mail: Week of 2/4

Every week, I list here the books that came in my mail the week before, as part of the endless (and now a bit anachronistic) ritual of book publicity. I may never actually review any particular book I list here, since I already have far too many books on my shelves, but I can at least tell you that they're coming, and (I hope) talk about what's most interesting and appealing in each of them.

This week I have three books from Yen Press, all coming out this month. One is a new manga, one is a reprint fancy-edition manga, and the third is a light novel (which is like manga, except you have to make up the pictures in your own head). And I'll even write about them in that order, to make things easier for you the home viewer.

Miyuki Nakayama's Spirits & Cat Ears, Vol. 1 launches a new series about a young woman who is a) so massively introverted that she hasn't gone outside in years, b) a priestess who can control spirits and has just accepted a job performing exorcisms at a shrine, and c) the summoner of a familiar who apparently regularly puts her on a leash. (The last I am tentatively assuming has to do with forcing her to interact with other people, and not some kind of ritual sex magic thing. But I could be wrong.) Manga revel in stories about the painfully shy, so, if that's what you like, here's another one. Oh, and she has cat ears -- there doesn't seem to be any obvious explanation why, but she does have them, and I know that's appealing to the same kind of people who like manga stories about girls in short skirts on leashes.

The reprint is Fruits Basket: Collector's Edition, Vol. 10, by Tatsuki Takaya. This big fat book combines what were volumes 19 and 20 of the original series, for those of you who have trouble with simple math. And there's a guy in a Mr. Rogers sweater on the front. What more could you ask?

Our light novel for this week is Natsume Akatsuki's Konosuba: God's Blessing on This Wonderful World, Vol. 1: Oh! My Useless Goddess, which has illustrations by Kurone Mishima. (So I was slightly incorrect above: you don't have to make up all of the pictures in your head. Just most of them.) This is another story about a shut-in -- I told you! --this time a teenage boy who died in a traffic accident on the one day he left the house. (Teaching the obvious lesson.) But he's given the opportunity to reincarnate in another world, one very much like an online fantasy MMO, where he gathers a dysfunctional party consisting of three attractive young women with strange hair colors to differentiate them. Yup, another harem story, plus a slightly new take on the trapped-in-a-game-world subgenre. The second chapter title mentions panties, so we're in for a bumpy ride.

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