Joe and Jenny recommend: P.H.D Phantasy Degree
[Jenny and Joe work at the Central Library and they LOVE manga and anime! They are going to share their favourite books and films on the Swindon Libraries blog, so watch this space for more great reviews in coming months! ]
The story centres on a mysterious and spunky girl called Sang who wants to get into the demon school Hades to find a ring of great power hidden inside somewhere. She comes across a group of students who attend the academy, consisting of a demon, a vampire, a werewolf and a mummy. After mocking them into submission they turn her into a vampire so she can enter the school and look for the ring but her presence causes a lot of trouble for the students and a mysterious guild is planning to attack the school at any moment.
This is a very fast paced manga series with a lot of different characters and locations. The question you keep on asking yourself “Who is Sang and what is her goal?” especially when a surprise twist is introduced at the end of the 2nd Volume/beginning of the 3rd volume.
Joe’s Opinion: This story has many twists and turns and when you find yourself getting used to a backdrop and the characters it suddenly changes and a whole set of new characters get introduced with a new location. This jarred me a bit as not enough was explained in the first few volumes about the characters and their motives, especially Sang, but this in a way did want me to keep reading to find out what happened next. My favourite character so far in the series would be Lukan the werewolf. In the first few volumes he is more like an obedient puppy (which leads to a lot of comedy moments) but as the story develops and the time to fight arrives he becomes a fierce predator.
Jenny’s Opinion: This is probably one of the most fast-paced manga series I’ve ever read and takes the approach of diving straight into the action, exploring the characters along the way rather than introducing them. On the one hand, this means there aren’t any moments when the story drags particularly, but some of the plot and characters are still unclear even a couple of volumes in. It also has a tendency to do away with characters as quickly as they are introduced, which makes it a little hard to get invested in the story. However it’s definitely not a series which can be accused as being dull or lacking in some brilliant battle scenes. My favourite character was Mordicus, an unusually laid back and long suffering vampire, who nonetheless really stepped up when it came to serious battle.
If you like this series, we suggest you check out Inuyasha, Demon Diary and Shaman King which can all be found on the Swindon Libraries catalogue.
We give this series 3 out of 5 magic rings!
Look out for our next post where we will be reviewing Ouran High School Host Club. AND…..don’t forget our mangatastic mascot competition is still open! You have just over a week left to enter – competition closes 21st October!