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Kasumi Volume 2

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Kasumi Volume 2

Kasumi Volume 2

© Monkey Square

The Bottom Line

While the first volume was a 'greatest hits' of shojo manga plot lines, Kasumi Volume 2 takes this story of an invisible girl down a more complex, interesting paths. Kasumi discovers that enduring the taunts of her snotty classmates is a walk in the park compared to the other 'gifted' students and evil spirits called 'The Forsaken' who have taken an interest in her newfound powers.

Romance isn't the main driver of the drama here -- instead, Kasumi Volume 2 explains some of the hows and whys of the events of Volume 1 and sets up new questions to keep readers on the hook for Volume 3.

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Pros

  • The stakes are raised as Kasumi meets other 'gifted' students who may or may not be on her side
  • A lot more action-packed than Volume 1, as Kasumi encounters 'The Forsaken'
  • The bishonen population grows with the introduction of Seiji and Isamu to the cast
  • Includes a few cute, humorous nods to otaku and anime con culture

Cons

  • A lot of new characters are introduced in this volume, but it's mostly build up for Volume 3
  • There's more fanservice, as a new 'gifted' girl magically transforms into a busty woman
  • For a main love interest, Ryuuki is given very little character development
  • Sometimes, Kasumi can hold her breath for a very, very long time. Hrm.
  • Is it really necessary to give sound effects for everything?

Description

Guide Review - Kasumi Volume 2

In Kasumi Volume 1, readers were introduced to Kasumi, her exclusive private school and some of her classmates: aloof and handsome Ryuuki, nerdy but friendly Ken, eccentric and sweet Maiko and snotty and vindictive Reina. As Kasumi endures some bullying from her classmates, she discovers that she has a special ability: she can turn invisible when she holds her breath.

Volume 1 was mostly about Kasumi discovering her gift and getting out of a few schoolyard scrapes. In Volume 2, the stakes get raised as Kasumi discovers that she's not the only 'gifted' student at Seiran Academy. In fact, a lot of new characters are introduced, including two that raise this story's bishonen (pretty boy) ratio, and a magical girl who can go from A to DD cups in a blink of an eye (that's not her only gift, just her most fanservice-friendly one).

It's good to see that this story is weaving in more complex plot threads, because if this story was only about Kasumi the invisible girl vs. Reina the insufferable snob, it would get boring pretty quickly. As Kasumi meets smooth-talking Seiji, and gets a few cryptic warnings from Ryuuki, she finds that her newfound abilities have put her on a collision course with a supernatural prophecy.

While it remains a shojo manga story at heart, Kasumi Volume 2 puts the romance on the backburner in favor of stirring up some action. The supernatural action sequences showcase Sugimoto's experience as a shonen manga artist, as he's clearly more confident drawing these scenes instead of the romantic ones.

At times, the plot twists happen just a little bit too conveniently, but Kasumi Volume 2 succeeded in keeping my attention, and hooking me in for Volume 3, which is a lot more than I can say for a lot of other manga that has passed through my review pile lately.

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