Archive for the Rakuen Le Paradis Category


Yuri Manga: Rakuen Le Paradis (楽園 Le Paradis), Volume 18

October 20th, 2015

RlP18Rakuen Le Paradis Volume 18 (楽園 Le Paradis),  is an example of a magazine that has hit it’s stride. And there is both good and bad in that. I know what I’m getting, and it’s all extremely high quality…but.

What I am getting is both exceptional art and storytelling by unusual, prolific, stylish and not-typical artists. There’s never any doubt in my mind that the artists are writing for people like me – adult women, who are not rejecting school stories but really would like to enjoy some time in adult life.

And the magazine gives readers tremendous variety, from the stylish slice-of-life stories by Nishi UKO-sensei to Samura Hiroaki’s funky, dense violent/scifi-ish work, with room for Kumeta Koji’s oddball social commentary and Mizutani Fuuka’s romance.  I especially love Unita Yumi’s fantasy “Nemurime-hime,” and find it both interesting and disconcerting to see Ume Aoki’s story be so straight an incest-y. There’s BL from Nakamura Asumiko and Yuri from Sengoku Hiroko and all manners of adult heterosexual relationships. This magazine spans a tremendous range of story-telling style and art. It has fully spread it’s wings and begin to fly on it’s own, confident in the risks it takes…and now I’d like to see it take a few more new risks. Let’s see where this can go. ^_^

Ratings:

Overall – 8

I always look forward to the next volume. It’s consistently one of the most fascinating and challenging Japanese magazines I read. Quirky, weird and bizarrely human.

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Yuri Manga: Rakuen Le Paradis (楽園 Le Paradis), Volume 17

May 17th, 2015

51bBWkEjEiLTo be very fair, the review for Yuri Manga: Rakuen Le Paradis, Volume 16 is pretty much word for word, what I’d write for this volume, too. I originally looked forward to this magazine every month precisely because it is not predictable, and so now that it has sort of developed a style, it’s a little bit of a let down.  And then it goes somewhere I didn’t expect it to, and I love it all over again. ^_^

In Rakuen Le Paradis , Volume 17 (楽園 Le Paradis) for thit chapter of Nishi UKO’s  “Collectors,” we turn to the one activity that differentiates an anything-philic and a “hoarder” which is to say, spring cleaning. ^_^

Sengoku Hiroko’s story has hit an impass. The teacher is not willing to cave to the student’s importuning please to teach her about love, but she is also not entirely making a clean break of it.

There’s a bit of BL in this volume as well, as Rakuen-kun, mascot of the magazine, finds love at the end of a decidely male arm, who feeds him in a cute chapter of  Nakamura Asumiko’s “Rakuen-kun to”.

Notable in this issue, Sayonara Zetsubo-sensei‘s Koji Kumeta makes an appearance with a very standard SZ-s chapter, including a cameo by Zetsubou-sensei himself. If you’ve ever read a chapter of the manga, you already know what it’s like. But I’m told the SZ-s manga ended “deliberately creeptastic,” so here’s a way to wash that out of your mind, if you enjoyed it initially. ^_^

Misutani Fuuka’s “14-sai no Koi” takes an interesting turn.

And it looks like we’ll be getting Takemiya Jin back for Volume 18. Check out the web previews (click the big pink button with WEB in it, then click  竹宮ジン for an idea of what we’re getting.)

Ratings:

Overall – 8

Please stay weird, Rakuen Le Paradis. I love you weird.

 

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Yuri Manga: Rakuen Le Paradis (楽園 Le Paradis), Volume 16

January 8th, 2015

Rlp16It’s time for another quarterly rave about Rakuen Le Paradis (楽園 Le Paradis), magazine! This issue, Volume 16, was chock full of great stories, as usual.

On the Yuri side, Nishi UKO-sensei’s new chapter of “Collectors”, as usual, had me smiling in fond alliance with Shinobu.  No one will ever accuse me of being a clothes horse. I bought one new sweater this season. But books? I got a lot. ^_^

Sengoku Hiroko’s continuing story of a student and the teacher she likes is turning rather serious. I don’t know where it’ll go at all, and that intrigues me.

Again, Nishi UKO presents a standalone story “que rico!” in which two lesbian couples prepare and share a dinner. It was all so normal that it took my breath away.

Unita Yumi’s “Nemurinohime” about a girl who sleeps too much but, while asleep, can access god-like powers, has joined the list of my top 4 series in the magazine. In this issue she works really hard to help a girl, a classmate,  who stays up too late texting her boyfriend. At the end, the two find that they actually have a lot in common and a new friendship is born.

As always, Mizutani Fuuka’s “14-sai no Koi” is excruciatingly cute.

Ratings:

Overall – 8

Always an enjoyable and challenging read. Every single issue.

Volume 17 will be out at the end of February.

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Yuri Manga: Rakuen Le Paradis, Volume 15 (楽園 Le Paradis)

August 24th, 2014

RLP15By Volume 15, Rakuen Le Paradis has settled into a routine. Thankfully, it’s a routine I’m really comfortable with. ^_^ The stories are a mix of genres with a hard edge of WTF, which I approve of, even if I don’t always enjoy it. And I frequently do. I’m still reading and enjoying wholly straight romance by Mizutani Fuuka (“14-sai no Koi”) and Kazuma Kowo (“Darling”). There are a number of series I read, but have no idea if I like, honestly, like everything by Nakamura Asumiko and Ninomiya Hikaru. And there’s Yuri, some of which I love.

Topping the “I love this” is Takemiya Jin’s “Omoi no Kakera,” which comes to a completion, at last. It’s a pretty gentle landing for a series that started rambunctiously. Mika is happy, Saki and Mayu have a chance to be happy and I’m hoping we’ll get more from her. Her name isn’t on the roster for Volume 16.  :-(

Nishi UKO’s “Collectors” was actually laugh out loud funny this time, as Shinobu sparks a meme of a sort, and  “demande” was a paean to sweets, work and a happy life.

Kurosaki Rendou is getting soft. This volume had a Yuri story not filled with manipulation or BDSM. Kinda creeped me out, to be honest. ^_^; I kept waiting for the boot to drop.

A little surprisingly, Sengoku Hiroko’s Yuri one-shot is now a short series. The teacher and the student have it out between them. The student asks the teacher to teach her about love. The teacher responds with an important first lesson about consent.

Not Yuri, but loads of fun was Unita Yumi’s (creator of Usagi Drop) story “Nemuri-hime” about a middle school girl dragged into godhead by a wandering kami. It was just delightful. ^_^

Ratings:

Overall – 8

Rakuen Le Paradis remains my favorite magazine with it’s eclectic collection of stories, art and perspective.

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Rakuen Le Paradis (楽園Le Paradis) Magazine, Volume 14

August 4th, 2014

In the light of Hirari magazine folding, I’m even happier than usual to still have Rakuen Le Paradis(楽園Le Paradis). This magazine, which is sex- and fetish-friendly, has so far been pretty good to us Yuri fans, but I’m not taking anything for granted.

Volume 14 has a few ongoing series and a surprise or two.

“Collectors” traces Shinobu’s hunt for a specific edition of a specific book and is amusing in a way only book collectors will understand. ^_^

For once, Kurosaki Rendou allows the to girls in his story “Ren Lao” to not have nasty hideous sex. That’s was a surprise.. ^_^;

Aoki Ume has been added to the roster, but her story, while adorable, is straight as the day is long. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen her work that isn’t a vaguely Yuri-ish story. It was actually refreshing. That makes, her, Kowo Kazuma snd Mziutani Fuuka all manga artists that I became aware of through Yuri, doing straight romance in this magazine.

Meanwhile Sengoku Hiroko, whom you may remember from the Mikazuki no Mitsu collection, has returned to Yuri with an uncomfortable student/teacher pairing in “Usuyamigari no Mune no Uchi.” (“Uncomfortable pairing” effectively covers about half the stories in this magazine and “hideously adorable pairing” covers the other half.)

Nishi Uko’s second offering this volume is “Roulette” which is quite possibly my favorite 4-page comic ever, as lovers kiss, they let the traffic light decide when they will finally part.

Take miya Jin’s “Omoi no Kakera” is drawing to a close, you can tell, because Mayu finally approaches Mika about what she overheard between the upperclassman and Saki. And, for the first time, Mika acts as an upperclassman and sempai, offering Mayu some common sense about her best friend. The next chapter will probably be the climax of this series, which made it three volumes, so that’s something!

Ratings:

Overall – 7

Volume 15 is already sitting here, I’d better get reading. ^_^

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