Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Halloween Manga Reads

Since Halloween is this Saturday, I thought I'd list some of my reviews of appropriate manga reads with "creatures of the night" and other creepy situations. Click on the links to see what I've thought of these series so far — there's something for everyone whether you're a shojo lover or seinen fiend!

Ballad of a Shinigami: From murder to suicide, this shojo manga takes an up-close look at the ways people die and how those left behind must deal with the aftermath. From tragic to sweet, this shinigami, or death god, has seen it all.

Black Bird: This supernatural romance features the aforementioned yokai and a young girl who sees demons, ghosts and the like. When she her life is endangered, she finds herself becoming an unwilling "demon's bride."

The Embalmer: Dealing with dead bodies isn't for the faint of heart, but this story is mostly about those left behind after the death of loved ones. Not the most Halloween-specific of the bunch, but a good read nonetheless.

Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service: Maybe actual zombies are more your speed? Then look no further than this funny, mysterious and often creepy series. While the episodic stories are usually in the spotlight, there's a common thread that's built through the series, too.

Me and the Devil Blues: RJ, an aspiring guitarist, wants to play the blues so bad, he's willing to sell his soul to the devil. While he's gotten what he wanted, the devil is waiting to get his due from the traveling bluesman at any cost!

Millennium Snow: This unfinished series comes from the mangaka behind Ouran High School Host Club and features a love triangle between a vampire, werewolf and the girl they've come to love. While it could easily go down an angsty trail (again, see: Twilight), it's mostly fun and funny, with a few touching scenes thrown in here and there for good measure.

Monster: This thriller is in the vein of perennially popular films featuring homicidal killers. Of course, there's no denying that Naoki Urasawa's masterpiece will draw you in!

Parasyte: Aliens invade the Earth in this Invasion of the Bodysnatchers-esque manga that is equal parts creepy, gruesome and thoughtful. Will they take over the world, or will Shinichi save the day?

Vampire Knight: This series is a vampire-centric story in the same vein as the Twilight series, with a love triangle, teen angst and plenty of blood-sucking fun. And don't say I didn't warn you — it's a guilty pleasure of mine for a reason!

Yokaiden: Ever wonder what those "bumps in the night" are? Well, in this tale, it's most likely caused by a yokai, or Japanese demon. From possessed lanterns to monsters that cut the bottoms of feet off of misbehaving children, there's a monster for everyone!

Edit: Eep — I just realized I forgot a couple of other Halloween-friendly manga (and manhwa) reads, so I've included a couple more below!

The Antique Gift Shop: In this Korean manhwa, be careful what you wish for! Bun-Nyuh, the reluctant shopkeeper, can see spirits and her mysterious store is a burden she's looking to shed.

RIN-NE: The newest series from famed mangaka Rumiko Takahashi follows "sort of" shinigami Rin-ne and his friend, Sakura, as they deal with lingering ghosts and evil spirits.

Yurara: High school Yurara has the ability to see spirits and ghosts, but she's always kept the ability to herself. When two of her high school classmates learn her secret, she's in for more than she bargained for!

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