Ever since I saw the review for Blue Is the Warmest Color on From Isi, I wanted to read it. Before this, I only saw the movie listed on Netflix. I checked the book out from the library and enjoyed it. In a colorless world, Clementine, a high school junior, has a family, friends, and a boyfriend she can’t reciprocate feelings for. She breaks up with him. Her gay friend takes her out to a gay bar where she meets Emma, the confident art student with blue hair. This event starts Clementine on the path of self-discovery and love. Narrated in diary entries, this graphic novel is a love story about two women in France in the ’90s.
Haruhi Fujioka is a scholarship student at a rich kids’ school who has to work for the Ouran High School Host Club to repay the debt she owes for breaking a priceless vase. On top of that, she has to keep it secret now that she is a girl. But now it’s time for physical exams. How is the club supposed to keep the doctors and their customers from finding out Haruhi is a girl? As the official start of a series plot, the second volume of Ouran High School Host Club, by Bisco Hatori, throws new issues at the Host Club to develop characters who did not get as much page-time in the previous book.
One day in a programming class in Flagstaff, Arizona, a guest speaker visits to get the girls in the class to play as female characters in Coarsegold Online. Anda Bridge decides to play the game and quickly levels up in her guild by killing gold farmers for money. She meets a gold farmer, a person who illegally collects rare items and sells them to other players, from China and learns that life isn’t easy for everyone. In Real Life, by Cory Doctorow and illustrated by Jen Wang, examines a culture clash, workers’ rights, and a black market.
Ghouls look like and live like humans, except they eat human flesh. Ken Kaneki is a human-Ghoul hybrid due to an accident that gave him the organs of a Ghoul. He is learning about life as a Ghoul by learning to act human, seeing the humanity in Ghouls, and avoiding contact with the “Doves,” investigators who kill and torture all Ghouls without consideration of which is good and which is bad. Volume 2 of Tokyo Ghoul, by Sui Ishida, is the volume that humanizes Ghouls.
Society contains humans and Ghouls, who look and behave like humans most of the time. One problem: the Ghouls must eat humans to survive. Ken Kaneki, a human in this society, is thrilled to go on a date with the woman he likes, but it turns out she only wants to eat him. After an accident and a dubious rescue, he transforms into human-Ghoul hybrid. Now Ken has to survive Ghoul wars, learn the ways of Ghoul society, and come to terms with his existence as a half-Ghoul. The first volume of Tokyo Ghoul, by Sui Ishida, explores a transformation into that of a monster and the way one man copes with this horrific change.
In 1997, Christophe André was working for a humanitarian NGO in the Caucasus when he was kidnapped and held hostage by some Chechens. He finds himself trapped in a room, handcuffed to a radiator, not knowing when he will be rescued from this Hell. While trapped, he thinks about possible escape plans, keeps track of the date, and entertains himself with his knowledge of world history. Guy Delisle recounts Christophe’s story as he was told it through a graphic novel.
Yoon Bum, a scrawny, quiet boy, has a crush on the most popular guy in school and who was nice to him in the military. This crush turns into an obsession and stalking. He goes to Oh Sangwoo’s home and lets himself in. What he saw inside was a psychopath. Yoon Bum becomes Sangwoo’s prisoner. Killing Stalking, a psychological horror manhwa, follows the psychological manipulation of Bum and his twisted relationship with Sangwoo.
I picked up Michael Cho’s Shoplifter because I was interested in a story about an English major – five years out of college – who realizes that she has only been writing copy for an advertising and that won’t change if she continues down this path. That is an interesting premise. Sadly, the story falls short of interesting.
In a retelling of the famous One Thousand and One Nights, Jeon Jin-Seok and Han Seung-Hee reimagine it with new characters and stories from around the world. The Shahrazad of this story is a guy who disguised himself as a woman to save his sister from execution, post-consummation. With his life on the line, what stories will Sehara tell the king?
At the threshold of puberty, two fifth graders, Shuichi Nitori and Yoshino Takatsuki, live with loving families and are well-liked by their classmates, but they share a secret. Nitori is a boy who wants to be a girl, and Yoshino is a girl who wants to be a boy. As they try to figure out their gender identities and places in the world, they have to deal with their peers’ reactions. Wandering Son, Vol. 1 by Shimura Takako is a coming-of-age manga about two transgender kids and the exploration of gender.