Manga Giveaway: Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid Giveaway Winner

Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid, Volume 1And the winner of the Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid manga giveaway is… Kate!

As the winner, Kate will be receiving the delightful Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid, Volume 1 by Coolkyousinnjya as published in English by Seven Seas. At first I was a little hesitant about reading Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid, but ultimately I couldn’t deny the allure of dragons. And so for this giveaway, I asked that participants tell me a little about their favorite dragons from manga. I’ve collected some of the manga mentioned in the list below (along with some others), but be sure to check out the giveaway comments for everyone’s detailed responses.

Some of the manga with dragons available in English:
Akame ga Kill! written by Takahiro, illustrated by Tetsuya Tashiro
The Ancient Magus Bride by Kore Yamazaki
The Betrayal Knows My Name by Hotaru OdagiriCirque du Freak by Takahiro Arai
A Certain Magical Index written by Kazuma Kamachi, illustrated by Chuya Kogino
Crimson Spell by Ayano Yamane
Delicious in Dungeon by Ryoko Kui
The Demon Prince of Momochi House by Aya Shouoto
Dragon Ball by Akira Toriyama
Dragon Drive by Kenichi Sakura
Dragon Half by Ryusuke Mita
Dragon Knights by Mineko Ohkami
Dragonar Academy written by Ran, illustrated by Shiki Mizuchi
Fairy Tail by Hiro Mashima
Fruits Basket by Natsuki Takaya
From Far Away by Kyoko Hikawa
Fushigi Yûgi by Yuu Watase
Gate: Where the JSDF Fought written by Takumi Yanai, illustrated by Satoru Sao
High School DxD by Hiroji Mishima
The Key to the Kingdom by Kyoko Shitou
Kiss of the Rose Princess by Aya Shouoto
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time by Akira Himekawa
Legendz written by Rin Hirai, illustrated by Makoto Haruno
Lord Marksman and Vanadis written by Tsukasa Kawaguchi, illustrated by Nobuhiko Yanai
Magic Knight Rayearth by CLAMP
Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid by Coolkyousinnjya
Natsume’s Book of Friends by Yuki Midorikawa
Negima! by Ken Akamatsu
Petshop of Horrors by Matsuri Akino
Princess Mermaid by Junko Mizuno
Rave Master by Hiro Mashima
Read or Dream written by Hideyuki Kurata, illustrated by Ran Ayanaga
Record of Lodoss War: The Lady of Pharis written by Ryo Mizuno, illustrated by Akihiro Yamada
St. Dragon Girl by Natsumi Matsumoto
Tales of Zestiria by Shiramine
Tenryu: The Dragon Cycle by Sanami Matoh
That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime written by Fuse, illustrated by Taiki Kawakami
Time Stranger Kyoko by Arina Tanemura
Two Flowers for the Dragon by Nari Kusakawa
Übel Blatt by Etorouji Shiono
Yona of the Dawn by Mizuho Kusanagi
Zero’s Familiar written by Noboru Yamaguchi, illustrated by Nana Mochizuki

Well now, that ended up being a fairly lengthy list, and I know that it’s not comprehensive, but it’s certainly a start. Whether they’re familiars, sidekicks, primary characters, or the stuff of legend, all sorts of dragons can be found in all sorts of manga. Thank you to everyone who took the time to share your favorite dragons with me! I hope to see you all again for the next giveaway.

Manga Giveaway: Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid Giveaway

It’s the last Wednesday of March and you know what that means! It’s once again time for a giveaway at Experiments in Manga! This month you all have the opportunity to win the first volume in Coolkyousinnjya’s surprisingly sweet and charming manga series Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid as published in English by Seven Seas. And as usual, the giveaway is open worldwide.

Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid, Volume 1

Ever since I was little, I’ve loved dragons. While I’m not quite as obsessed with them as I once was, I’ve never grown out of my affection for dragons. And so when there’s a manga series that features dragons in some way–like Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid–I can’t help but give it a try. I’ll admit, despite my established interest in dragons, I was initially a little wary of Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid and was surprised by how much I enjoyed the first volume. The series has a few missteps, but overall it’s great fun and has some fantastic characters. And with the anime adaptation that’s currently airing, even more people are now aware of the charms of Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid. Hopefully as a result they’ll be encouraged to seek out the original, too!

So, you may be wondering, how can you a copy of the Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid, Volume 1?

1) In the comments below, tell me a little about one of your favorite dragons from a manga. (If you don’t have a favorite or don’t know of any, simply mention that.)
2) If you’re on Twitter, you can earn a bonus entry by tweeting, or retweeting, about the contest. Make sure to include a link to this post and @PhoenixTerran (that’s me).

It’s as easy as that! Participants in the giveaway have one week to submit comments and can earn up to two entries. If you have trouble with the comment form, or if preferred, entries can also be sent directly to phoenixterran(at)gmail(dot)com. I will then post those comments here in your name. The giveaway winner will be randomly selected and announced on April 5, 2017. Best of luck to you all!

VERY IMPORTANT: Include some way that I can contact you. This can be an e-mail address in the comment form, a link to your website, Twitter username, or whatever. If I can’t figure out how to get a hold of you and you win, I’ll just draw another name.

Contest winner announced–Manga Giveaway: Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid Giveaway Winner

My Week in Manga: December 26, 2016-January 1, 2017

My News and Reviews

Happy New Year, everyone! 2016 may now be over, but there’s still a little time left to enter Experiments in Manga’s December giveaway. Tell me a little about your favorite tournament manga or tournament story arc by Wednesday for a chance to win the first omnibus of Tadatoshi Fujimaki’s Kuroko’s Basketball. Also posted at Experiments in Manga last week were my random musings about some of the notable manga, comics, and other books that debuted in 2016. Despite there being three posts last week (which hasn’t happened in a very long time!) I actually wasn’t online much at all. As a result, I probably missed out on some interesting reading and announcements, so do let me know if there was anything particularly cool. One thing that I did see though was an interview with Kabi Nagata, creator of My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness which is scheduled to be released in English by Seven Seas later this year (and which I’m really looking forward to).

Quick Takes
Bungo Stray Dogs, Volume 1Bungo Stray Dogs, Volume 1 written by Kafka Asagiri and illustrated by Sango Harukawa. The Armed Detective Agency specializes in the dangerous cases that the Japanese police and military either won’t or can’t handle. It’s a team of uniquely skilled individuals who have abilities that seem to come right out of fiction, but the “good guys” aren’t the only ones with formidable powers. While there are names that a more casual reader might recognize—Osamu Dazai, Edogawa Rampo, Junichiro Tanazaki, Ryunosuke Akutagawa, and so on—others, like the lead Atsushi Nakajima, are less well-known in English. (I actually happen to be a pretty big fan of Nakajima’s work.) Their supernatural talents and personality quirks are all based on their namesakes. For example, Dazai’s power is named No Longer Human and he has a penchant for attempting suicide. It’s off to an intriguing start, but I’m not sure if Bungo Stray Dogs will appeal quite as much to someone not as familiar with the literary references being made. It’s not necessary to understand them to enjoy the manga, though. So far, I am getting a kick out of the series and look forward to seeing how it develops.

Hunter x Hunter, Volume 1Hunter x Hunter, Volumes 1-8 by Yoshihiro Togashi. I’ve been somewhat reluctant to start reading Hunter x Hunter (it might have something to do with the manga already being over thirty volumes long), but I’ve seen so much excitement and fan art for the series recently that I finally gave in. And I’ll admit, there’s a tremendous amount that I found appealing about the beginning of Hunter x Hunter. The setting is interesting, too, especially the concept of Hunters. These are people who, after putting their lives at risk to pass a grueling series of tests, are granted access to resources and information that others can only dream of. The manga largely follows Gon, a boy who wants to become a Hunter in order to find his father Ging, himself a hunter of great renown, as well as the friends and enemies Gon makes along the way. I really enjoyed the first story arc in which the candidates are trying to pass the Hunter exam. The second arc, while it serves an important purpose, I found to be a bit tedious as some of the world’s metaphysics are overexplained. However, the series quickly recovers its momentum again with clever action, intriguing characters, and drama.

Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid, Volume 1Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid, Volume 1 by Coolkyousinnjya. Out of Seven Seas more recent monster girl manga, Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid is the one that I was most interested in. For one, I happen to really like dragons. It also doesn’t hurt that the series is yuri-esque and that the titular Miss Kobayashi is an adult woman working as a systems engineer. Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid features some nudity and bawdiness but for the most part it doesn’t tend to be overly-sexualized which is also refreshing. The manga can actually be surprisingly cute,  charming, and sweet. Hotaru is a dragon who has taken it upon herself to act as Kobayashi’s maid after Kobayashi saves her life. For her part, Kobayashi thought it was all an alcohol-induced dream and so is very surprised to discover that a dragon girl has made herself at home in her apartment. Why a maid specifically? It turns out that Kobayashi is a bit of a maid otaku (which becomes very clear when she goes off on drunken rants on the subject). Hotaru, who loves Kobayashi dearly, wants to do anything to make Kobayashi happy even if her efforts are somewhat awkward and frequently miss the mark.

Reindeer BoyReindeer Boy by Cassandra Jean. I am a fan of Jean’s illustration work, and so I was very excited to learn that an original graphic novel was in the making. Reindeer Boy is based on a series of character drawings that Jean has been creating (and that I’ve been following) since 2013. The comic follows Quincy, a young woman whose life takes an unexpected turn when a group of students, all of whom have antlers, transfer into her high school. They seem to take particular interest in her, especially the flirtatious Cupid who claims they are Santa’s reindeer. Quincy’s not sure what to make of it all, but the more she gets to know them the more she likes them. Admittedly, the story of Reindeer Boy does feel like it was made to fit the characters rather than the other way around. It’s kind of a strange comic, but it’s fun, goofy fluff with a bit of romance, delightful characters, and beautiful, sensual artwork. Reindeer Boy, while telling a complete story, does seem to end rather abruptly. I’m not sure if there are plans to release any additional reindeer comics, but I’d love the opportunity to spend more time with the characters and learn more about the mythology that Jean has created.

Yuri!!! on IceYuri!!! on Ice directed by Sayo Yamamoto. It’s been a long while since I’ve had the time and opportunity to marathon an entire anime series, but I knew that once I started Yuri!!! on Ice that I wouldn’t want to stop. And I was right; I love this series so much and hope that there will be a nice physical release that I can purchase in the future. The underlying story is fairly straightforward and simple: After a miserable performance at the Grand Prix, the career of Japanese figure skater Yuri Katsuki is falling apart when his idol Victor Nikiforov unexpectedly quits competing to become his coach. Yuri!!! on Ice is a series about love, passion, and inspiration in many forms. It’s also about people struggling against their selves, fighting through failure and realizing their self-worth. Yuri!!! on Ice is a tightly written and immensely satisfying show, but I do think it would have been even better if there were just a few more episodes to allow the characters and story more room to breathe. That being said, there is still some impressive character development with the series’ short span and the psychological elements are handled particularly well. Understandably, the leads receive the most attention, but I’d really like to know more about the supporting cast, too.