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Featured image for Merry Month of Manga: ORFINABackground image for Merry Month of Manga: ORFINA

Merry Month of Manga: ORFINA

It's time to take a look at another failed fantasy manga from CMX, although this one is less about fairy tale romance and more about epic ba...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Merry Month of Manga: BLACK CLOVERBackground image for Merry Month of Manga: BLACK CLOVER

Merry Month of Manga: BLACK CLOVER

Weekly Shonen Jump doesn't dabble too much in fantasy these days, and the most recent example is...divisive, to say the least. BLACK CLOVER ...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Merry Month of Manga: DRAGON GOES HOUSE-HUNTINGBackground image for Merry Month of Manga: DRAGON GOES HOUSE-HUNTING

Merry Month of Manga: DRAGON GOES HOUSE-HUNTING

 What's the bigger fantasy here: a gentle dragon who only wants a house of his own, or the very idea of being able to afford to buy or…

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Merry Month of Manga: BEYOND THE CLOUDSBackground image for Merry Month of Manga: BEYOND THE CLOUDS

Merry Month of Manga: BEYOND THE CLOUDS

Thankfully, there are more recent fantasy series that is not only appropriate for kids, but also legitimately good all on its own. BEYOND TH...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Merry Month of Manga: PRINCESS PRINCEBackground image for Merry Month of Manga: PRINCESS PRINCE

Merry Month of Manga: PRINCESS PRINCE

Once upon a time, if you wanted a fairy-tale-style shojo fantasy, you had to settle for books like this. Thank goodness for progress.  PRINC...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Merry Month of Manga: MUSHOKU TENSEI: JOBLESS REINCARNATIONBackground image for Merry Month of Manga: MUSHOKU TENSEI: JOBLESS REINCARNATION

Merry Month of Manga: MUSHOKU TENSEI: JOBLESS REINCARNATION

Isekai fantasy manga are all too often power fantasies for their readers, and sometimes those power fantasies can go in some obnoxious or da...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Merry Month of Manga: LOUIE THE RUNE SOLDIERBackground image for Merry Month of Manga: LOUIE THE RUNE SOLDIER

Merry Month of Manga: LOUIE THE RUNE SOLDIER

  LOUIE THE RUNE SOLDIER ( Maho Senshi Riui ), based on the light novel series written by Ryou Mizuno and character designs by Mamoru Yokota...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Merry Month of Manga: KONOSUBA: GOD'S BLESSING ON THIS WONDERFUL WORLDBackground image for Merry Month of Manga: KONOSUBA: GOD'S BLESSING ON THIS WONDERFUL WORLD

Merry Month of Manga: KONOSUBA: GOD'S BLESSING ON THIS WONDERFUL WORLD

It's a miracle! A modern isekai manga that neither bored nor infuriated me! KONOSUBA: GOD'S BLESSING ON THIS WONDERFUL WORLD ( Kono Subarash...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Merry Month of Manga: MOURYOU KIDEN: LEGEND OF THE NYMPHBackground image for Merry Month of Manga: MOURYOU KIDEN: LEGEND OF THE NYMPH

Merry Month of Manga: MOURYOU KIDEN: LEGEND OF THE NYMPH

Once again I found myself staring down another Tamayo Akiyama manga.  Could it possibly fare better than the likes of Zyword and Hyper Rune...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Merry Month of Manga: SLEEPY PRINCESS IN THE DEMON CASTLEBackground image for Merry Month of Manga: SLEEPY PRINCESS IN THE DEMON CASTLE

Merry Month of Manga: SLEEPY PRINCESS IN THE DEMON CASTLE

Finding a modern fantasy manga that has nothing to do with light novels is hard enough.  Finding one of those that's a comedy is rarer still...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Merry Month of Manga: THE DUNGEON OF BLACK COMPANYBackground image for Merry Month of Manga: THE DUNGEON OF BLACK COMPANY

Merry Month of Manga: THE DUNGEON OF BLACK COMPANY

 Today's review exists because someone said "you know what a dungeon-crawling fantasy needs?  CAPITALISM!" THE DUNGEON OF BLACK COMPANY ( Me...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Merry Month of Manga: RESTAURANT TO ANOTHER WORLDBackground image for Merry Month of Manga: RESTAURANT TO ANOTHER WORLD

Merry Month of Manga: RESTAURANT TO ANOTHER WORLD

 When it comes to fantasy manga these days, it seems that the only thing more popular than sending random Japanese people to alternate world...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Merry Month of Manga: THE DEVIL IS A PART-TIMERBackground image for Merry Month of Manga: THE DEVIL IS A PART-TIMER

Merry Month of Manga: THE DEVIL IS A PART-TIMER

 You know, we see so many stories about people travelling (by choice or by death-induced force) to other worlds.  What you don't see as ofte...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Merry Month of Manga: THE LIZARD PRINCEBackground image for Merry Month of Manga: THE LIZARD PRINCE

Merry Month of Manga: THE LIZARD PRINCE

It's been too long since we've covered a CMX manga on here.  They always had shojo fantasy series that were always interesting, even if they...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Merry Month of Manga: DRAGON HALFBackground image for Merry Month of Manga: DRAGON HALF

Merry Month of Manga: DRAGON HALF

This month marks the ninth anniversary of The Manga Test Drive.  It's honestly kind of fantastical that I've been doing this for so long, mu...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Review: DEMON SLAYERBackground image for Review: DEMON SLAYER

Review: DEMON SLAYER

 The 2010s was a sterling decade for Weekly Shonen Jump as far as content was concerned, with a steady and fairly diverse selection of big ...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Review: BOBOBO-BO BO-BOBOBackground image for Review: BOBOBO-BO BO-BOBO

Review: BOBOBO-BO BO-BOBO

The 2000s produced a lot of Weekly Shonen Jump 's bigger (and longer) hits, but for every hit there were duds like this. BOBO-BO BO-BOBOBO, ...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Review: YU-GI-OH!Background image for Review: YU-GI-OH!

Review: YU-GI-OH!

People forget this particular series started out as a Weekly Shonen Jump series, but is it worth remembering over 30 years later? YU-GI-OH!...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Review: DR. SLUMPBackground image for Review: DR. SLUMP

Review: DR. SLUMP

 Once again we're looking at a month of Weekly Shonen Jump titles, starting with one of the oldest titles from the magazine to ever see prin...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Review: VOICES OF A DISTANT STARBackground image for Review: VOICES OF A DISTANT STAR

Review: VOICES OF A DISTANT STAR

A romance set against the backdrop of space sounds epic, but stories like this prove that it can be intimate and longing as well. VOICES OF ...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Review: SATURN APARTMENTSBackground image for Review: SATURN APARTMENTS

Review: SATURN APARTMENTS

 Of course, not every sci-fi work is so old, so storied, so action-packed.  Sometimes it's more about just trying to live your life while li...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Review: ASTRO BOYBackground image for Review: ASTRO BOY

Review: ASTRO BOY

 This month we're going to look at some science fiction manga, and if we're going to do that we might as well start with the sci-fi manga th...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Review: YOU'RE MY PETBackground image for Review: YOU'RE MY PET

Review: YOU'RE MY PET

 Of course, just because a romance is strange does not mean it is inherently bad or that the manga itself is lacking, as today's example pro...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Review: PRIMITIVE BOYFRIENDBackground image for Review: PRIMITIVE BOYFRIEND

Review: PRIMITIVE BOYFRIEND

Normally we here at the Manga Test Drive spend February looking at bad romance manga, but after this last year we need something of a break ...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Review: TOKYO BABYLONBackground image for Review: TOKYO BABYLON

Review: TOKYO BABYLON

 Since we have been mercifully spared the anime adaptation of this series until the spring, now's the time to talk about one of CLAMP's most...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Review: SUKI: A LIKE STORYBackground image for Review: SUKI: A LIKE STORY

Review: SUKI: A LIKE STORY

 Well, it might have gotten off to a slow start, but it's January, which means it's time for yet another CLAMP Month.  This one is going to ...

The Manga Test Drive

2020 In the Rear View Mirror (and Holiday Giveaway Winner)

 First of all, I have to thank everyone who participated in this year's Holiday Review Giveaway.  I've never gotten so many responses in the 8 1/2 years I've…

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Holiday Review: THE ROSE OF VERSAILLESBackground image for Holiday Review: THE ROSE OF VERSAILLES

Holiday Review: THE ROSE OF VERSAILLES

Yeah...anyone who has been reading this blog for a while or follows me on Twitter knows that this review has been a long time coming.  After...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Holiday Review: SPY X FAMILYBackground image for Holiday Review: SPY X FAMILY

Holiday Review: SPY X FAMILY

The holidays are a time about gathering with family and loved ones, something that's a lot harder to do this year, so why not read a manga t...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Holiday Review: ENIALE & DEWIELABackground image for Holiday Review: ENIALE & DEWIELA

Holiday Review: ENIALE & DEWIELA

Speaking of making great art this year, there are few mangaka making art as great as Witch Hat Atelier creator Kamome Shirahama.  This year...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Holiday Reviews: KEEP YOUR HANDS OFF EIZOUKEN!Background image for Holiday Reviews: KEEP YOUR HANDS OFF EIZOUKEN!

Holiday Reviews: KEEP YOUR HANDS OFF EIZOUKEN!

We've spent most of this month honoring some of the best (and worst) art that manga in 2020 had to offer.  It's only fitting then that we lo...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Holiday Reviews: BLOOD ON THE TRACKSBackground image for Holiday Reviews: BLOOD ON THE TRACKS

Holiday Reviews: BLOOD ON THE TRACKS

If you wanted something just as serious as My Broken Mariko but far more chilling, then 2020 delivered just that with Vertical's release of...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Holiday Review: MY BROKEN MARIKOBackground image for Holiday Review: MY BROKEN MARIKO

Holiday Review: MY BROKEN MARIKO

There was another notable josei one-shot that came out late this year.  It's all about grief and loss.  In that sense, it feels like the per...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Holiday Review: MAKEUP IS NOT (JUST) MAGICBackground image for Holiday Review: MAKEUP IS NOT (JUST) MAGIC

Holiday Review: MAKEUP IS NOT (JUST) MAGIC

The strangest josei manga we got this year was also technically another nonfiction manga in the same vein as something like My Lesbian Exper...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Holiday Review: SWEAT AND SOAPBackground image for Holiday Review: SWEAT AND SOAP

Holiday Review: SWEAT AND SOAP

Is it strange that one of the sweetest, sexiest romance manga I read all year wasn't the one about buff fireman but instead one involving a ...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Holiday Review: FIRE IN HIS FINGERTIPSBackground image for Holiday Review: FIRE IN HIS FINGERTIPS

Holiday Review: FIRE IN HIS FINGERTIPS

 This year has been a stellar one for manga aimed at adult women.  Not all of them are strictly josei, but the variety and amount out there ...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Holiday Review: THE WITCH AND THE BEASTBackground image for Holiday Review: THE WITCH AND THE BEAST

Holiday Review: THE WITCH AND THE BEAST

 But that's enough of high fantasy.  Let's wrap up this subject with some urban fantasy aimed at an older audience. THE WITCH AND THE BEAST ...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Holiday Review: A WITCH'S PRINTING OFFICEBackground image for Holiday Review: A WITCH'S PRINTING OFFICE

Holiday Review: A WITCH'S PRINTING OFFICE

Naturally we have to cover at least one isekai title.  The more of them we get in the US, the more esoteric their particular gimmicks get.  ...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Holiday Review: WHO SAYS WARRIORS CAN'T BE BABES?Background image for Holiday Review: WHO SAYS WARRIORS CAN'T BE BABES?

Holiday Review: WHO SAYS WARRIORS CAN'T BE BABES?

That being said, there was a lot more fantasy manga starring women this year, especially after the success of series like Ascendance of a Bo...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Holiday Review: TO SAVE THE WORLD, CAN YOU WAKE UP THE MORNING AFTER WITH A DEMI-HUMAN?Background image for Holiday Review: TO SAVE THE WORLD, CAN YOU WAKE UP THE MORNING AFTER WITH A DEMI-HUMAN?

Holiday Review: TO SAVE THE WORLD, CAN YOU WAKE UP THE MORNING AFTER WITH A DEMI-HUMAN?

Fantasy manga continued to dominate 2020, the majority of it being isekai stories.  You'll still books about older trends like 'monster girl...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Holiday Review: GOODBYE, MY ROSE GARDENBackground image for Holiday Review: GOODBYE, MY ROSE GARDEN

Holiday Review: GOODBYE, MY ROSE GARDEN

 Yet my favorite yuri series of the year wasn't a modern series, but instead a beautiful historical melodrama that evokes the history of the...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Holiday Review: HOW DO WE RELATIONSHIP?Background image for Holiday Review: HOW DO WE RELATIONSHIP?

Holiday Review: HOW DO WE RELATIONSHIP?

Thankfully, there's been a lot more yuri manga in 2020 that have focused not just on older couples but also on relationships that are a lot ...

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Holiday Review: BREASTS ARE MY FAVORITE THINGS IN THE WORLD!Background image for Holiday Review: BREASTS ARE MY FAVORITE THINGS IN THE WORLD!

Holiday Review: BREASTS ARE MY FAVORITE THINGS IN THE WORLD!

The market for yuri manga continues to grow with each year, and as it does we see a wider variety of yuri manga out there.  We have your…

The Manga Test Drive

Featured image for Holiday Review: GIGANTBackground image for Holiday Review: GIGANT

Holiday Review: GIGANT

This year saw the announcement of a lot of new titles from established creators.  Unfortunately, that included Hiroya Oku. GIGANT ( Giganto ...

The Manga Test Drive