Genre: Horror Shonen Year Release in English: 2022 Source: BOOK☆WALKER
Rating: 5 out of 5.
Content warnings: Self-harm, gore, murder See my reviews of Volume 1 and Volume 2 for more thoughts on this series
This series is end-to-end edgy nonsense and I love it. In Volume 3, the school is under attack by a Curse-God Contractor (yes, again), this time featuring a deadly game of tag where every 666 seconds, the “It” person dies.
I really liked the twists in this one! The villain isn’t who you think it is, and it’s such a great vehicle for the world’s further rules and building. We actually find out how a person becomes a Curse-Breaker, and I think that’s neat.
What I’m enjoying the most, however, is with every peek into Saeyama’s moral compass, there’s a few steps back. He’s powerful, he’s seen some shit, and I hope we get more of his backstory in the upcoming volumes
Reminder: Star rating reflects my opinion of the series overall. Followtheselinks for my review of Volumes 1 through 3.
At the beginning of the series, we meet Denji, a boy saddled with generational debt who gets killed by gangsters, only to make a pact with his dog, Pochita, to become a Devil-human hybrid called Chainsaw Man. He gets picked up by the department of public safety, whose Division 4 is managed by the beautiful, enigmatic Makima. Their primary objective is to eliminate the Gun Devil, which wreaked havoc on Japan over a decade prior.
There’s elements of slice-of-life, true horror, and exciting action as we follow Denji on his quest to fulfill the lower levels of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs with satisfying twist after satisfying twist.
The first volume of a short story collection from a new-to-me horror writer. To be honest, I picked this volume up because the cover and packaging were gorgeous. I found myself delighted by the horrors found within.
A mysterious young woman finds herself entangled in others’ personal lives with powers that can shift the tides of fate.
It’s easy to tell that the art style is much older, with the original works having come out in the late 60’s, early 70’s. The lines are bold and there’s great use of blank spaces with solitary figures. There’s also not a lot text to be found in the pages, letting the art do a lot of the story-telling. Some of it is unsettling, and I’m invested in the stories told in facial expressions alone.
I found both stories chilling, but “Sisters,” to me, had the more effecting twist. I’m definitely into the style and I’m looking forward to the stories found in the following volumes.
Happy New Year from me and my very strange perception of time. January felt very long, and it’s only barely almost over. What also doesn’t help is that my goals for the year are still quite nebulous aside from the reading goals and fitness goals. Which is fine, really. Time has been strange since March 2020, and I’m sorry to remind you how far away that date is.
Anyway, here is what I read this fine January! There has also been one blog interview:
Reminder: The star rating reflects overall opinion of the series.
In this historical dark fantasy, there are rumors of an island containing the elixir of life. Every scouting team sent, however, returns as floral corpses. The Shogunate dispatches a group of their own executioners coupled with a convict sentenced to death. The one who finds and returns the elixir will be given a pardon. Gabimaru the Hollow wants nothing more than to return to his wife. A bunch of monsters both literal and human will not be able to stop him.
A series with beautiful art, compelling characters, body horror galore, and impressive escalation that raises the stakes without introducing nonsense out of left field.
Genre: Horror Shonen Year Release in English: 2021 Source: BOOK☆WALKER
Rating: 4 out of 5.
Content warnings: Self-harm, gore, murder
Now that Volume 1 introduced this strange world of curse killers and curse gods, Volume 2 focuses on a specific killer to stop, while introducing a network of antagonists: Cursed Blood.
I really liked the villain here, Yami Akeno. The journey we go on with her descent into villainy really worked for me. Her motives are quite clear, her execution (both metaphorical and literal) are quite chilling. But what really keeps me invested is how Curse Breaker Saeyama keeps both his colleagues and the villain on their toes, keeping his hand close. There’s not enough established yet to have the reader figure out what’s truly at play, but it’s a fun ride and I’ll definitely keep reading.
November featured not as much reading as I’m used to. That’s because I finished my rewrite as my NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) project, rather than writing the requisite 50,000 words. I did it! I completed the rewrite, and it is now sitting in beta readers’ inboxes. The work took a lot out of me, so much so that I’m still feeling vaguely hungover.
December will feature some more things. But also, what do you mean it’s December already?
October went by quickly. I had the opportunity to go to Sirens Conference where I was on a panel about nonbinary representation in science fiction and fantasy. I also had a hard time reading this month, which was unfortunate, but I did enjoy the books, ARCs, and manga I did manage to read.