Author Archive for Robin

Tsubasa: Reservoir Chronicle, vol. 8

Fresh from the complex and emotional conflict from the land of Ono where for the first time our band of travelers did not succeed in collecting the Princess Sakura’s memory feather, this installment starts off relieving the tension by allowing…

Once in a Blue Moon, vol. 1

While I find the trend of American publishers attempting to capitalize on the booming manga market by trimming books down to “manga” size and artists mimicking the manga style frequently offputting, a few people get it right. Artist Jennifer Quick…

Persepolis 2: the Story of a Return

At this point, happily, every reviewer in the world seems to have discovered the frank, optimistic, and critical voice of Marjane Satrapi. Persepolis: A Story of a Childhood has become a known title in the book world and is being…

Flight, vol. 1

One of my favorite animated films growing up was the Disney experiment Fantasia–now acknowledged a classic, though at the time of release it was famously shunned by audiences too used to fluffy talking animals and melodious princesses. For me, the…

Pet Shop of Horrors

Introduction “Dreams, love, and hope…” are what this pet shop sells. So says Count D, the mysterious owner of a outwardly unassuming but inwardly cavernous pet shop in Los Angeles’ Chinatown. The pet shop and its pets are connected to…

Pet Shop of Horrors, vol. 1

Most volumes in this series are filled with short stories, each entitled with a “D” word or phrase, working more like a detective television series than one extended story arc. In this volume, our first encounter with Count D is…

Pet Shop of Horrors, vol. 2

In Dragon, the Count show’s his fiercely protective side when a delivery mix up leaves a rare dragon egg, about to hatch, in the hands of a pet owner expecting a lizard. He manages to wrangle Orcot into helping him…

Pet Shop of Horrors, vol. 3

Though there are always hints at D’s family, and past, in Diamonde we get another piece of the puzzle not to mention a frightening glimpse of just how little D may actually care about human life (not to mention the…

Pet Shop of Horrors, vol. 4

As the series continues, the stories get more complex and the morals even murkier; though D seems to always have the last word, there are never any easy solutions. In Digital, a man is found murdered in his apartment with…

Pet Shop of Horrors, vol. 5

At the halfway point, the series gets a little deeper into our characters’ lives as Orcot’s family arrives on the scene. Our first tale, Dual, follows an ambitious politician and his arrogant demand that Count D hand over the creature…

Invincible, vol. 2: Eight is Enough

Robert Kirkman’s excellent series just keeps getting better with this next installment, though in this volume the story takes a dark, gory turn that guarantees this title a place in the teen collection. Mark Grayson continues to grow up a…

Tokyo Babylon, vol. 3

While this series continues to focus on Subaru’s caseload, clues are starting to mount pointing to that fact that Seishiro has another more threatening agenda. In this volume, CLAMP hints at the X/1999 future as Subaru gets entangled with a…

Tokyo Babylon, vol. 4

This volume is split into two tales. In the first, Subaru encounters a grief-stricken mother seeking revenge for her child’s murder. Certain he can help her by summoning the spirit of her lost daughter, Subaru raises her ghost to allow…

Tokyo Babylon, vol. 5

Events start hurtling toward violence and sadness with volume five. The first two shorter tales concentrate on how ignorance and being so wrapped up in your own world leaves you blind to other’s troubles. Subaru meets a kind older man…

Wish

Introduction CLAMP, that group of 5 women masters of the manga format, are also some of the most prolific creators currently working in Japan. They tackle everything they do with intelligence and a great sense of drama, and happily, they…

Wish, vol. 1

An angel, Kohaku, is rescued from being tangled in a tree by an unsuspecting but chivalrous doctor, Shuichiro. Once freed, Kohaku proclaims that Shuichiro can have a wish granted for lending her aid. Unfortunately, Shuichiro cannot think of a single…

Wish, vol. 2

All of the introductions of Volume 1 out of the way, the story starts to really take off in Volume 2. Shuichiro, his usual calm slowly unsettled by his numerous heavenly and hellish houseguests, is attempting to figure out a…

Wish, vol. 3

With Volume 3, consequences start to pile up. Kohaku and Shuichiro sense that their time is limited, and almost unconsciously, each tries to extend it. Hisui advises Kohaku to consider her feelings carefully — does she want to stay with…