Books Reviewed

Quick Review: Ouran High School Host Club, Vol. 1 & Afterschool Charisma, Vol. 1

image of the covers of both manga books.

Hello Book Lovers!

First review of the new year! Can’t believe it’s 2021! I’ve set a new goal of uploading a review twice a week. I’ve been reading a lot of manga & graphic novels as well as middle grade so expect lots of those books to make an appearance here on the blog! If you’re interested in romance books at all then check out my romance book blog, Seduced in the Stacks for reviews & more!

Alright on to the reviews!

Quick Review: Ouran High School Host Club, Vol. 1 & Afterschool Charisma, Vol. 1Ouran High School Host Club by Bisco HatoriGary Leach
Published by VIZ Media LLC on 5 July 2005
Genres: Comics & Graphic Novels, Manga, General, Young Adult
Pages: 184
Format: Paperback
Source: Library
Buy on BookShop

One day, Haruhi, a scholarship student at exclusive Ouran High School, breaks an $80,000 vase that belongs to the 'Host Club', a mysterious campus group consisting of six super-rich (and gorgeous) guys. To pay back the damages, she is forced to work for the club, and it's there that she discovers just how wealthy the boys are and how different they are from everybody else.

my review

This first volume of Ouran High School Host Club was a quick, entertaining read! I enjoyed learning about all the characters, the snarkiness of the main character & all the hijinks the club hosts got into. This was very much a humorous read with some bizarre moments I only tend to find in manga stories. I’m interested in seeing how Haruhi will continue as a “host” & how she’ll continue to pay off her debt. I wonder if any “romance” will ensue? I’m also thinking on how the other characters will develop as we readers get to know them better. My favorite? Tamaki because he’s so dramatic & it makes me laugh a lot; although, the Hitachiin twins are definitely a close second favorite of mine! Overall, this manga series starter was funny and entertaining with great potential! Here’s hoping I’ll enjoy the rest of the series as well!

Update: also found out there is an anime so naturally I hope to watch that after reading the series!

This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
Quick Review: Ouran High School Host Club, Vol. 1 & Afterschool Charisma, Vol. 1Afterschool Charisma by Kumiko Suekane
Published by Chuang Yi on 10 February 2013
Genres: Manga, YA Graphic Novel
Pages: 198
Format: Paperback
Source: Library
Buy on BookShop

After the attack on St. Kleio, it was decided that Shiro, as the clone of the founder of St. Kleio, is to leave the school for another place. He was put under the care of clone Leonardo Da Vincci, the former director of St. Kleio. At Leonardo's place, Shiro was reunited with Marie Curie and made the acquaintance of the previous generation of Freud. It came as a shock to Shiro when he saw Hitler on TV one day. In his press conference, Hitler had described St. Kleio as an evil organization that creates clones of famous historical people to control the world?

my review

Okay, so I decided way beforehand to review these both together because they’re both set in a high school-esque setting. But after reading this manga, I realized how very different they are tonally. The series above is lighthearted and funny, while this one is definitely dark and mysterious.

So before I go any further in my review I have to post a trigger warning: this first volume has visual depictions of murder, suicide and nudity.

It was a little jarring to see all three visually depicted in this manga because I found the title shelved in the Young Adult section of my library. But after I pushed through my discomfort (outside of the suicide part which I’m still a bit jarred about even now), I did end up enjoying this first volume. Whereas Ouran High School Host Club is funny and light, this was darker, intriguing, mysterious and sometimes bizarre again but in a different way. I’m not quite sure if I’m sold on the storyline yet, but I am intrigued to figure out the mystery or conspiracy running through. Plus, it was an interesting premise to begin with in terms of having clones of famous dead people including leaders, artists, intellectuals and even dangerous “villains” from history. All in all, I’m more intrigued than entertained, I guess, but I’ll still be picking up volume two to see what happens next and if this is a series I’ll be able to stick through.

Let's Chat

What are your thoughts on the books above? Would you try them out? Have you read the series already? Let me know below!

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