cornerofmadness (cornerofmadness) wrote in 50bookchallenge,

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Books 113-114

青の祓魔師 [Ao no Ekusoshisuto] 12 (Blue Exorcist, #12)青の祓魔師 [Ao no Ekusoshisuto] 12 by Kazue Kato

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The tension between the Illuminati and the True Cross heat up and the exorcists sort of get their butts handed to them. Izumo gets kidnapped with the help of a traitor. I don't want to spoil that part for anyone but I will say this, it did feel a little poorly set up. Lucifer throws down the gauntlet for Samael (Mephisto) and he's forced to send Yukio, Rin and the rest of the exwires after Izumo because Shura and the others are too injured.

They head to Izumo's hometown which has been built up around an Inari shrine to almost a ludicrous (and I'm betting magical) degree. They also have to deal with all their feelings about the traitor. In the process of their investigations they learn Izumo's tragic history (which is ironically almost the same one I just read in another series). She and her sister are the bastard children of a powerful man who wants nothing to do with them and Mom chooses him over them.

As for Izumo, she is confronted with her past including a madman, Professor Gedoin who is running experiments on her family and is ready to do the same to her.

I have to say I thought it was well plotted, even if I'm not really an Izumo fan However, the art was rougher than I've ever seen it. Gedoin had an exaggerated, inhuman appearance that really bothered me. On the other hand, we had Mephisto out of his costumes, in a t-shirt and pants....though he had a zipper pull of a dog (cat?) dangling from his crotch. Okay then...

Sadly though, the translated volumes seem to have caught up to what's out there to be rounded up and bound because it's now six months to the next one. Sigh.

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Attack on Titan, Vol. 13 (Attack on Titan #13)Attack on Titan, Vol. 13 by Hajime Isayama

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Okay 3.5 stars Actually I found the lack of Titan fighting in this to be a relief. That gets so dreadfully dull. This one is plot heavy and I enjoyed that, though I would say some of the political stuff seems to be a bit tacked on. Assume spoilers from here on in.

The team licks its wounds after more or less getting its collective ass handed to them by Reiner/Ymir/Bertholt last time. All of them are a bit dazed and confused. They do make it back alive, even Erwin survives his traumatic amputation.

Zoe and Connie proved me right about the Titans being villagers (well to be fair that wasn't that hard to figure out) and she relays this to Erwin and Levi, the latter being less impressed than I expected to see Erwin basically taken out of the game. However, Zoe is thrown for a loop when Minister Nick is murdered and we learn the military police aren't just corrupt, they're basically the king's thugs. Levi shakes her out of it.

We also learn Krista's tragic past, basically the unwanted bastard daughter of an important man (which ironically enough I read another manga volume for a different series with the exact same plot point). Sadly, for me, this tragic past doesn't make me like Krista any more. I find her selfish and unlikable, not even caring that Armin is risking himself for her (though I AM amused I'm not the only one who thought Krista and Armin look alike).

For his part, Armin is suffering the physical attention of would-be rapist while he and Jean are body doubles to lure out the people who are trying to kidnap Eren and Krista. This is pretty much Erwin and Levi's plan that ends in fomenting rebellion against the crown. As for Eren, not only can't he harden his Titan body, he's losing himself in the Titan body which Zoe and Armin fear means he could end up like Connie's villagers.

One thing is bothering me. Zoe and Armin are so smart and they figure things out so quickly (Erwin too), why are they not just going to the basement of Eren's home? I think it was said it was too far away and too dangerous but it seems like it's been forgotten a bit. Eren's memory doesn't seem to be coming back any and they have to realize answers are there. Over all, I preferred this to endless fight scenes. This is probably the prettiest cover this series has ever had.

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Tags: dystopia, fantasy, manga, urban fantasy

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