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.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

The Story of Saiunkoku by Kairi Yura and Sai Yukino

Title: The Story of Saiunkoku
Mangaka: Kairi Yura (Art) & Sai Yukino (Story)
Series is: Ongoing with 6 volumes
Volume(s) Reviewing: 1
My Rating: 4/5

Although she is of noble birth, Shurei lives her life like a commoner. Well educated, she always wanted to work in the imperial court. Due to laws however, women are not allowed to hold office.

An opportunity arises for her when emperor Ryuki does not want to properly rule and leaves everything up to his advisors. Shurei is asked to be Ryuki's consort in order to bring him back on track. She happily agrees as she is offered tons of gold and the chance to live a life she never had. However, it is not going to be that easy of a task!

I had my eye on this series ever since I saw the cover of it for the anime series. I found the clothes and character appearances, especially Shurei, to be so striking. When the manga recently got licensed, I had to review it.

The manga sets in the fictional world of Saiunkoku, which I find is a cross between Ancient Japan and Ancient China. The setting reminds me quite a bit of the historical Chinese dramas that I used to love watching when I was little. As well, the clothes for the noble women are very fancy and elaborate. This manga definitely takes me back quite a bit because I haven't seen those Chinese dramas for so long that it is nice to be reminded of again.

Shurei is a really sweet girl and knows how to keep on top of things. I admire her determination and her love for knowledge. I adore the clothes she gets to wear once she became a consort for sure. Ryuki turned out to be a little more different than I expected though. He is much more innocent, especially for someone who is 19. He is like a young child who is yet to fully comprehend things. Before I started reading, I thought he was going to be a cocky character since it generally turns out like that in manga. So it was nice to see him portrayed in a more youthful way. Due to their differences, the image of romance is a little difficult to imagine between them. Though I would like to see how that plays out.

I like this manga for the message it sends across and where the story is taking place. In terms of the plot, there is not a lot that is happening for the first volume. There is a hint that something will happen down the road but in terms of exciting action, there really isn't any thus far. It's more where the mangaka is putting all the characters in place and establishing their roles.

I would recommend The Story of Saiunkoku for anyone into historical mangas.

Review copy provided by Viz.

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LM Preston said...

I love these reviews of Magna. My daughter loves Magna and so does my DH. I get to read your reviews to them.

Sy said...

I haven't read the manga but the Saiunkoku anime is quite beautifully done! I love the clothes too and there are many hilarious and eccentric characters.