Yuri Manga: Hayate x Blade, Volume 3 (English)

June 2nd, 2009

I told you, didn’t I? I’ve been telling you for years now and you *finally* realize that I haven’t been lying. Hayate x Blade, Volume 3 is…awesome.

In this volume, two major things happen – we start to learn that the characters we thought were all idiots are in, fact, amazingly, stupendously cool. And we also learn that as amazingly, stupendously cool as they are…they are still all idiots. ^_^

You are not alone when you decide that Jun is the most amazingly, stupendously cool character, by the way. As you will see in the next volume. You may also be amused, but not at all surprised, to learn that Jun is voiced on the Drama CDs by Toyoguchi Megumi. Yes, she *is* the Sei of this series – it wasn’t just your imagination.

So, in Volume 3, we realize that Ayana is deeper than just being a grumpy old grump and Hayate has a lot to learn and Jun has a very important person in her life and that person, Yuho, is quite amusingly broken. We also learn that Hitsugi and Shizuku are awesome. We actually learn that *every* volume, so just get used to me saying that, if you aren’t already. ^_^

I can’t speak for anyone other than myself when I say this but, I thought the fight between Jun and Ayana was genius the first time and I love it no less this time. Just wait ’til we get to Volume 4! (Which I just finished editing a few weeks ago. So, it’s a-coming.)

As with the last few volumes, I did in fact copy edit this one, and for the first time I’m actually credited. I have to say that I think Adrienne and Ed are a top-notch team at the translation and adaptation and it’s a genuine pleasure to work on this book – not just because I love the series, but because they do a fabulous job. I feel like the characters all retain their specific voices, no matter what accent or speech patterns they have in the original, without it ever sounding forced. As a person for whom “voice” is critical in writing, this may be the best ever example that a good translator and a good adaptor can really make a tremendous difference.

So, seriously, if you haven’t been sure if you want to get Hayate x Blade, do. Not because I love it, or because I worked on it, but because Volume 3 is pure awesome.

Ratings:

Art – 8
Story – 9
Characters – 9
Yuri – 4
Service – 2

Overall – 9

Tor still does not send me copies of books I work on (can you believe it? When I ask, I’m told they have no extras to send…seriously.) So my heartfelt, sincere gratitude to a new Okazu hero, Jason H for stepping in and sponsoring today’s review! Jason, thank you for being my hero! Drop me an email at anilesbocon at hotmail dot com and I’ll send you a copy of your Okazu Hero badge to proudly display on website or blog!

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13 Responses

  1. Anonymous says:

    I believe volume 3 was the turning point for me – when HxB went from great to awesome, and yes, Jun and Yuho played a big part in that. I love how Yuho is the only one who ever manages to make Jun cut out her perverted comments, while Ayana can only resort to violence, and even that doesn’t really work.

    Also, I’d have a request: when you review the upcoming volume 10, would it be possible to include a short summary of the major plot points ? I’ve been keeping up with the monthly releases, but I’ve honestly no idea what is going on after a certain point… I have the feeling something major is happening, but I’m not sure the series will reach its end just yet.

  2. @Anonymous – A reasonable request, but I can make no promises. I sometimes spoil the hello out of a book, and sometimes I don’t. I have no idea what I’ll do until I do it. :-D

  3. Rinu says:

    I hope I will have a chance to realize it before RightStuff cancels the item from an order again ;__;.

    Anyway, I have been happy that I can get it this way – a hardcopy in known language – since the time when I read 1st volume :).

    And wee, thanks a lot for full RSS.

  4. Anonymous says:

    @Erica: Sure, no problem. I just thought I’d ask :)

  5. “Sei of the series” eh? :D

    I happen to think that there are just some roles Toyoguchi has mastered. I think she’d make a pretty good Julia, if you ask me (of Strawberry Shake Sweet).

  6. Pocky-san says:

    I’d originally read a few of chapters of this manga online, after seeing a positive review from you and others.

    And I’ve really gotta say, it’s gold. A lot of the time I try to avoid Yuri and shoujo-ai that centers around school life, but, like Gretel (which I want more of. I know it’s mindless ecchi, but it’s… somehow very addictive/hypnotic o.o), I let myself jump in.

    It’s really charming how dumb and likable most of the characters are. Manga like Hayate X Blade are fine examples of Yuri done well, by that I mean it’s Yuri WITH much more substance (as apposed to the numerous one-shots that leave you feeling empty).

    Here’s lookin froward to the anime ^__^

  7. Volume 3 is quite entertaining, even though I had to exchange the first copy Amazon sent me because of missing pages. I got my friends to read this series, and they thought it was hilarious as well. I can’t wait for volume 4.

  8. Mara says:

    “(Which I just finished editing a few weeks ago. So, it’s a-coming.)”

    Does this mean that for the moment at least Hayate x Blade is selling well enough that seven seas are not going to axe it?

  9. @Mara – I’m sorry, I really don’t know. I’m just an editor on the Tor side and they don’t tell me how the sales are going. I hope it’s doing well, of course. At least to get us through Volume 9, which was the pinnacle of the series so far.

  10. Donald says:

    My sole complaint is that the volumes end at awkward times, at *almost* but not quite the end of the current story. Makes for a nice cliffhanger but frustrating reading.

    And poor Jun, in an all-girl school and still can’t get laid.

  11. bec says:

    @maya – THIS is what sevenseas are saying about the upcoming releases. looks like we’re safe up til volumes 7-8. (fingers crossed.)

    http://gomanga.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=6741&sid=2d374277c86345c1754c9f3d56d75808

    (sorry in advance for linking if it’s not allowed, and also my inability to hyperlink.)

    volume 3 is total win. jun as a ninja is just so damn cool.

  12. This was really good and I’m glad I preordered it, though I did miss Inugami some (hey, I grew up on the Addam’s Family).
    Looking forward to volume four and finding the comments here hopeful that I’ll see beyond it.

  13. Ledde says:

    Haha, I was in our local manga shop to welcome volume three with fanfares and confetti.

    Vol 3 was as someone else here above mentioned a bit of a turning point for me too, when HxB went from LOL to SQUEEWOWO_O. It’s really subtle, but from here on, you -can- catch that there is a deeper side to the drama in this manga, which was good to see.

    And haha, Shizuku is really just an idiot like the rest xDDD.

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