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.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

xxxHolic by CLAMP

Title: xxxHolic
Mangaka: CLAMP
Age Group: Teens
Series is: Completed with 19 volumes
Volume(s) Reviewing: 17
My Rating: 4.5/5

Watanuki is still new at being the shopkeeper now. When a customer who comes in is someone he knows and is quite dangerous, how will he handle their wish?

I was sent out of the blue the 17th volume of xxxHolic to review. Luckily having read up to the 11th volume or so, I knew that I didn't have to read everything from beginning to end. However, having to missed out on a few volumes prior to this one, I did lose out on key information (such as, why Yuko retired and where is she now?).

In this volume returns an old character, the Jorogumo, wanting to get a wish granted from Watanuki. Being the shop owner now, he must grant every wish he receives. Whenever there is a new case in xxxHolic, each one tends to be haunting and sometimes, a beautiful mystery. This is no different when the Jorogumo wanted a red pearl. However, there is only to be one big "case" for this volume contrast to the other volumes when Yuko constantly had new customers coming in all the time and each story more unique than the one before.

Watanuki's demeanor has definitely changed now that he is bounded to the shop, unable to ever leave its premises (except when he needs to with a bit of magic). He has grown more mature and more refined in his actions now. Despite not fully liking Domeki in the very beginning of the series, the two are quite close now even though they would deny it. Himawari is no longer in the picture because she is unable to step into the shop due to its dangers except for once a year. However, Watanuki is still able to contact her through phone. Despite never being able to be together, their feelings for each other are still strong.

What I wonder the most is how this series will end because I am basically 2 volumes away from it. Nonetheless, xxxHolic is a series that any manga fan could appreciate for its detailed and hauntingly sad, but lovely stories.

Review copy provided by Del Rey.

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