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Manga Review: One Piece Volume Three by Eiichiro Oda

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One Piece Volume Three is a manga by Eiichiro Oda, and it was published by Viz Media’s Shonen Jump imprint in 2004. The series is rated “T” for teens; after reading this volume, I would agree with this rating.

Monkey D. Luffy wants to become the king of the pirates, is facing off against a pirate captain named Buggy the Clown. Both have eaten the devil fruit; this gave Luffy a body of rubber, while Buggy can break his body apart and bring it back together at will. After an action-packed battle that looks impossible for Luffy to win, Luffy and Nami figure out Buggy’s weaknesses. They also get the map that shows the way to the Grand Line.

After that adventure, Luffy, Nami, and Zoro sail away, and end up on an island inhabited by weird animals. They also find a man named Gaimon who is trapped in a treasure chest. After a short adventure on the island, Luffy and his crew arrive at a village in order to try and acquire a better boat.

In this village lives a young man named Usopp, and he has a reputation for making up stories and telling lies, much like the character in the fable, “The Boy Who Cried Wolf.” Usopp has a run-in with Luffy and his crew, and he tells them about a wealthy bedridden young girl named Kaya. Usopp goes to see the girl, and Luffy and the others find them. Unfortunately, they’re all found by Klahadore, the girl’s benefactor, and he shoos them all away. At the end of the volume, Luffy and Usopp overhear that Klahadore isn’t who he says he is, and that he has a plot to kill Kaya.

In this volume, Oda really shows how Luffy has a good heart, even though he may not always make the wisest of decisions. When it comes to the new character Usopp, he can be a bit annoying at times, but I have a strong suspicion he’s going to become an important part of the cast (especially after learning that Luffy has a connection with him).

My biggest disappointment in this volume of One Piece is the fact that Zoro doesn’t do much. Admittedly, in the Buggy the Clown story, Zoro is injured, so he can’t do much. But for the other two stories, he’s just kind of “there.” Hopefully Zoro will see more action in the next volume of the series.

A notable thing about this particular volume of One Piece is the fact that between some of the chapters, Oda shares early sketches of the some of the characters, rough storyboards, and even some explanation about the characters and the sketches included in this volume. I especially thought that Oda’s explanations were a nice touch, since I enjoy learning about background information and trivia for the manga that I read.

I found One Piece Volume Three to be an enjoyable read, and I can’t wait to read the next volume to see how the story progresses.

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About Lesley Aeschliman

Lesley Aeschliman is a freelance writer who began writing on a full-time basis in 2007. She has served as the Anime editor at BellaOnline.com, and she also writes and maintains two blogs: Lesley's Musings... on Anime and Manga and AeschTunes.