dazzle Volume 1 by Minari Endoh

Back when Tokyo Pop was licensing big chunks of random manga, selections veered to the very good and some very bad titles. This is one of the latter: lazy writing, lacklustre storylines, and cliche stock characters. It’s everything that can be bad in Japanese manga condensed into one boring and trite story.

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Plot: In a fantasy land that is pretty much modern day but without so much technology, a girl who can do magic is suddenly told by her father to go out into the world that day and explore. So she does, meets a random guy who is moody and withdrawn, and our perky little heroine demands to team up with him to find a gun. Cue pointless drama.

So, I wouldn’t have enough room in this review to list all the cliches. The most egregious include standard perky stupid tsundere, moody love interest with secret history, all side characters being cardboard cutouts, and your usual random gothic character designs. Add in NO attempt at world building whatsoever, a complete lack of logic in the plot or people, and incomprehensible interactions and dialogue and you get a hot mess.

The illustration work is awful – highly inconsistent with people changing looks often, facial features moving around constantly, and terrible anatomy and action scenes. I’m surprised anyone could like this when it is so lazy – no attempt was made to do anything than just write a perky story with an annoying and completely unlikable set of characters that the author/mangaka must have thought charming.

I’d avoid this one – it’s not even worth reading as a time waster. Your time should be worth more than this.

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