Notice for Review Requests

I receive review requests weekly. However, my personal schedule is hectic and I no longer review actively. (I also manage another blog called The Toronto Cafe and Food Blog). I do read every request sent but I apologize in advance that I do not reply to them all.

If I do take on a request, I will forewarn that it may take some time before I can review it. I am now looking to review adult fiction and self-help books instead of young adult fiction because I have grown out of it. If you are to request a review for either adult fiction or self-help, I will more likely to give it a shot.

In the meantime, Stop, Drop, and Read! serves as an archive book review blog. When I have the time, I may post a review. Thank you for understanding.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Variante by Iqura Sugimoto

Title: Variante
Mangaka: Iqura Sugimoto
Age Group: Older Teens
Series is: Completed with 4 volumes
Volume(s) Reviewing: 1-2
My Rating: 4.5/5

Aiko came home to see her parents slaughtered just before she was attacked herself by an unknown being. She wakes up to find herself in a laboratory. Scared, she has no idea what she is doing there. She then finds out that there is something wrong with her left arm --- it has a mind of its own and can transform itself!

Somehow her DNA is mixed with the DNA of a creature called the chimera. These gruesome beings are out killing people senselessly at random. Aiko is afraid of her new arm but she must confront her fears as she is the hope against these monsters. Will she be able to do it?

Variante is a sci-fi thriller series that I found to be a compelling read. It follows a girl who has pretty much lost everything in her life and has to deal with the horror that caused it all. It made me curious on why this happened specifically to Aiko because it seemed like there is a reason that won't be revealed until later on.

Aiko is an innocent teenager who works hard to please her parents. You couldn't help but pity her after a strange monster came and destroyed her life. Although she is frightened with the situation she is (who wouldn't?), you will admire her bravery as she decides to face these beings in the second volume.

This series not only focus on Aiko, but the reader can see why Sudo, a private investigator that plays a big role, is where he is today. The second volume takes a look into his past and I thought it was great that the mangaka did that because it fleshed out her characters effectively. Sudo is a cool character and I hope that his and Aiko's relationship could further deepen.

I find the art to be really nice, full of emotion and depth. Sugimoto's characters are designed simple but it worked with their personality. She also knows how to pull out the macabre drawings that contrast her usual art that makes it even more appealing.

If you are looking for a new horror series with some mystery and interesting character plot, I recommend Variante.

Review copy of vol. 1 provided by CMX.

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1 comment:

Book Monster said...

Nice review!! Will have to look this one up!!