Train Man-Should You Read It?

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Genre: Comedy/Romance

Rating: 3.5/5

This novel is based on the allegedly true story of a 23-year-old man who intervened when a drunk man began harassing a group of women on a train. The event itself and following dates with one of the women, known as Hermes, were chronicles and posted on mega-BBS 2channel in Japan (an internet message board).

This story follows an anonymous poster, sharing his experience about the drunk man and the girl on the train. In the discussion forum, readers begin to call the anonymous user “Train_Man.” When the woman asks Train_Main for his address, he does not know what to do and heads for the discussion boards.

With an array of supporters that regularly read the discussion, Train_Man has become his own mini celebrity on the forum, and everyone is pitching in and giving advice for what he should do in pursuing this young woman.

As Train_Man begins to share more about himself, including his lack of girlfriend history and that he is an otaku (nerd), the people of the forum step up, giving him all kinds of advise and things to do to win the girl over, named Hermes in the blog.

After a few real life meetings and dates with Hermes, Train_Man continues to follow the advise of those on 2channel, and he constantly updates his story and events with Hermes.

This novel is written in the format of the blog discussion forum and has various usernames with their postings similar to how a forum is set up. Many of the 2channel users await Train_Man to hear about his day, to hear how his experiences and story are developing, and the 2channel readers will sit and discuss Train_Man amongst themselves out of boredom from waiting. When Train_Man makes a post, a great digital celebration takes place among the forum as readers seek the details of this young man’s life, wanting and waiting for him to succeed.

Overall it was an enjoyable read and the formatting of the novel as a forum was fun, but the story was a bit bland in that we only see what is written in the forum. The only picture painted in the readers mind is whatever Train_Man and the other members of 2channel post, so we are always seeing the events indirectly and retold, so the reader never really knows quite what happened, having it told from the character as a story to other posters. Still an interesting read, I would recommend this for those who like hopeful romances as well as nerds, seeing as the book is written in a forum style.

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Monster Musume-Should You Read It?

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Genre: Manga/Comedy/Harem/Monster Girls

Rating: 4/5

While the audience for this manga is definitely geared for men, I, a woman, vastly enjoyed this series. At present (by the publication date of this post) there are 11 volumes released in North America by Seven Seas publisher. Volume 12 is scheduled for Late August, 2017, and the NA publisher is keeping up as volumes are being released in Japan. This manga has a rating of OT (older teen, which is 16+) and has an abundance of nude breasts, so be warned.

So what is this multi-genre manga even about? Basically this young man named Kimihito was not signed on for the Interspecies Cultural Exchange Act, but when Smith-san brings a shy Lamia, Miia, to his door, his home becomes open to monster girls, and he is their host. Of course, there is only Miia, but when he encounters a Harpy in the park and a Centaur on the street, he finds that more and more exchange monster girls are in need of a place to stay. Not only do these three girls end up staying with him, but a Mermaid, Arachne, Slime, and Dullahan live with Kimihito too!

Miia is very protective of Kimihito and gets flustered and jealous when the other monster girls are around, because she wants “Darling” all to herself. When the Interspecies Cultural Exchange takes a new step, considering it currently states that humans and monsters cannot physically mingle (sex or harming). With Smith-san the head of many things, she puts forth that Kimihito must select one of the monster girls living with him to marry, so that the cultural exchange can move forward.

A number of other monster girls get involved with our daring “Darling,” some even seeking to kill him!

There is also the MON squad, a group of more human-like monster girls (consisting of a Doppelganger, Zombie, Cyclops, and Oni) that help Smith-san keep the peace between monsters and humans. They, too, get some fun date time with our hero, Kimihito. (Zombina is one of my favorites!)

Even though this series is geared toward men, I would highly recommend it to anyone who loves comedy and can handle a lot of breasts, because bare breasts are an iconic thing in this manga. The thing I personally love most about it is the author’s sense of humor. Okayado knows just the right time and place to implement memes and modern media humor. Included below are photos from some of my favorite jokes implemented from video games:

Prison School-Should You Read It?

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Genre: Pornographic Comedy Manga (Is that even a real genre?!)

Rating: 4.5/5

I was a bit wary about doing a review for this manga, but I decided it is worth the review. The thing that made me possibly not want to review this book was its borderline of being pornographic comedy. This manga is DEFINITELY for people 18 AND OLDER, and the manga has a “mature” rating on the back for its content.

Being an adult, one of the big things I have to say about this manga before jumping in to what it is about, is that the humor is added both visually and verbally, and I have choked out laughing multiple times per volume (there are four volumes current in North America which consist of two of the Japanese volumes each. Since there are 22 Japanese volumes, there will be 11 North American volumes. Volume 5 is scheduled for release in November, 2016). And it’s not even that some of the imagery is vulgar, but just the way some of the facial expressions are drawn is enough for a tumult of laughter. Also, the scenarios that the boys are placed in are absolutely hilarious.

Disclaimer: While I would call this pornographic comedy, and there are definitely lots of pornographic images, there is no intercourse in the series (at least up through volume four, which is as far as I have read thus far in the North American release).

So what is this hyped up adult manga about? An all girls boarding school is finally allowing boys in! Only five boys are admitted-Kiyoshi, Takehito, Shingo, Joe, and Andre-and the girls are not thrilled! Any infraction of the school rules results in a stay at the school’s prison. For this school, and kind of perversity is an infraction. When the five boys are caught in a plan of peeping, they are sent to the prison run by the Shadow Student Council. It is the goal of these women to sexually frustrate these boys, punish them with gross food and harsh manual labor, and eventually get them to do something that would be deemed bad enough for expulsion.

While for mature audiences, the scenarios that the author comes up with are ridiculous and well-positioned for a real laugh-out-loud moment while reading. The facial expressions add to the comedy, and it is the poor fates that these five boys suffer through that really gives this manga its humor.

I would highly recommend this manga for anyone who is not easily offended and who has their own crude sense of humor.