Bring on the bloody, bring on the gore, bring on the ultimate of action Manga. Hinowa ga Crush! by Takahiro brings all that plus a girl’s dream to follow in her mother’s footsteps. I’ve seen gory Anime’s before but I had yet to read one. So this Manga marks the first with me, and not the last.
If you’re not into women warriors and war themes, this might not be the Manga for you. Honestly, if it didn’t have a female protagonist I’m not sure I would have liked it. Despite the often over sexualization of female characters in Manga and Anime alike, which Hinowa ga Crush! is also guilty of, there’s something that draws me to these types of stories anyway.
Volume one begins with the world building. A somewhat mysterious women captain on a war ship hell bent on winning a battle in a world divided by nations. A long drawn out Civil War presents the opportunity for those who want to make a name for themselves and becoming a hero is what one strives for. (Most of these fighters are young adults).
Big battle and death abound and fast forward to the next section and a girl who looks exactly like the previous one causes slight confusion (for me). But soon it’s all explained. Hinowa adopts the name of her mother and strives to become just like her and move up the ranks in the military. She, along with her friends from her village train and sign up for the next battle.
It’s all slightly fast paced and the introduction of Akame raises more questions. Further research into this series, I found that Akame has her own series and I totally missed the opportunity to care about her character. However, I could still read this series and enjoy it, because it’s also about Hinowa. If I had to sum up this volume or give it an overall theme it would be: Mystery. Obviously, not all questions are answered here, but if I had known that Akame was an assassin (based on her own series which came before this.), I might have been more excited.
While it got me interested in the overall theme, I’m not sure if I’m 100% invested in this series yet. Curious, yes, but I haven’t been endeared to any of the characters.
The art, illustrated by Strelka, is pleasant to look at and a little different than what I’m used to. It’s a slightly more serious art style than the usual Kawaii style that I enjoy.
-For all other Manga Love, check out the archives.
I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.
Hinowa ga Crush!
On the island of Wakoku, the civil war offers anyone the chance of becoming a hero -- from fishing women to bastard children, any can make a name for themselves by working through the rigorous ranks of the army. Hinowa, a young woman with extraordinary skills, is determined to do just that, but soon learns things may not always go to plan...More than ten years after a disastrous battle, the war is still ongoing, and a girl with black hair and black markings washes up on shore...