I admit it. I’m ambivalent about Higuri’s work. I think her art is beautiful but her storylines take off in odd ways and I find the shonen-nei a bit frustrating. I’d rather it be full out yaoi, frankly. However, this is neither yaoi (or at least I don’t believe so) nor written by Higuri. She did however adapt Iida’s story and illustrate it.
The one thing that is a tad annoying for the non-Japanese speaker (and maybe for those who are, since it’s annoying in English when author’s do this), is that the brother’s names are nearly identical. Naoto and Naoya Kirihara are brothers with psi abilities. Naoto, the older of the two, seems to have PK while Naoya reads minds and sees the future. This develops very earlier on and their parents turn them over to an institute run by Mikurya. We don’t get to see much of this place.
The story picks up when the brothers are older and they manage to escape. Mostly they just want to try and live a normal life. How they plan to do this the reader has no idea. One assumes being raised away from humanity, they aren’t just going to get jobs and blend back in. That point is moot however as Kamiya, a well known psychic foresees the end of humanity when a virus escapes from a lab and mutates and that somehow the brothers are involved.
Kamiya has a way of manipulating his fans to get them to act on his wishes, such as to do away with the Kirihara brothers. While the brothers try to dodge assassins they do meet the medical researcher who created the virus. In her, I’m disappointed. She goes from intelligent scientists to needy weak manga-girl in just a few pages. However by the end, the brothers learn something big and bad is waiting for them on the outside world. The art was as pretty as I figured it would be and the story is interesting. We learn a bit more about Naoto than Naoya since as the older dominate brother he does more of the talking. Naoya is much more frail all the way around. I’d be interested in the next volume.
A Touch of Dead by Charlaine Harris
This is an anthology of Sookie Stackhouse stories. I liked that Harris said that a) she made them short stories because they just didn’t fit into the flow of the novels b) that they didn’t always work. I can understand that feeling.
Fairy Dust –The Fairy twins Claudine and Claude need Sookie’s help to solve a mystery. I liked this one.
Dracula Night – The legend has it that on his birthday Dracula will grace one birthday party for him somewhere in the world and Eric prays it’s his party. It was fun seeing him fanboying.
One Word Answer – This answers what happened to Sookie’s cousin in respects to the Queen of Louisiana. It was pretty good.
Lucky – Amelia and Sookie have to find out who’s sabotaging a local insurance agent. Eh, this one just sort of lay there.
Gift Wrap – Sookie saves a shape shifter. I didn’t like this one. This one illustrated why I’m beginning to lose interesting the novels, everyone wants to sleep with Sookie. Snooze. And the twist at the end is just creepy, not sweet, creepy.
Overall though I like the anthology.
The Julius House by Charlaine Harris
Figuring I like Harris’s Sookie Stackhouse stories, I decided to try her mysteries. This is the Aurora Teagarden series. It’s book four (that’s where the library started). And it’ll pretty much be the only one I read. Four books were published in under a year bearing out my thought that these were either highly rushed or much older works.
Aurora is getting ready to marry the significantly older Martin. Turns out they both buy each other property as a wedding gift. He buys her the Julius House, an older home she fell in love with in spite of the fact the previous family disappeared one night never to be seen again. She buys him his family farm in OH (they live in Georgia). In fact we spent over 30 pages watching her buy it from his step dad who’s out to screw him. We never find out why that is and the farm never comes back into the story. Maybe somewhere else in the series but here’s where I’d rather have had tell not show. What a waste of my time.
Before the marriage, Martin hires some friends who are supposedly down on their luck and he’s letting them stay in the apartment over the Julius House’s garage. Later we find out they’re much more but not until after the marriage. Ditto with what Martin really does. Roe doesn’t even get that interested in solving the case of where the Juliuses went until well 50 pages in.
This is as flat as two week old soda. No one has much personality. Roe is the best fleshed out (keep in mind this is 4 books in) and all I really know is she used to be a librarian (doesn’t seem to like to read much though) and that she gets angry over nothing. Yes there are things she should have been angry over but there are times she gets furious over nothing. I didn’t hate this but I was definitely indifferent. I don’t see the need to read more. For that matter, where the Juliuses went didn’t work for me.