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Manga Review: Twin Spica Volume Five by Kou Yaginuma

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Twin Spica Volume Five is a manga by Kou Yaginuma, and it was published in North America by Vertical, Inc. in 2010. There isn’t any kind of rating printed on this volume, but I would personally recommend Twin Spica to manga readers who are twelve or thirteen years of age and older.

This volume of Twin Spica sees Asumi and her friends starting into their second year at the Tokyo Space School, and there are two storylines taking place. The first has to do with Asumi and Kiriu, the boy she met during the protest on the ferry back in Volume Four. Asumi has lost a rocket keychain. Kiriu knew it was hers and planned to return it to her, but some boys at his school destroyed it and threw it out into a nearby field. During this volume, Asumi and Kiriu finally get to know each other, and it appears that a friendship could begin to develop in future volumes of the series.

The other storyline has to do with Mr. Lion, the spirit of one of the astronauts who died when The Lion crashed, reminiscing on his first love. The girl he sees looks remarkably like Marika, Asumi’s friend at the Tokyo Space School. From the clues presented in this volume, it appears that the girl he’s remembering and Marika are indeed one and the same. But since there should be a significant age difference between Mr. Lion and Asumi, I’m now left with a question: “How?” I’m waiting with bated breath to read more of the series in order to learn what exactly is going on with Marika, because the backstory that is developing for her is a fascinating one.

There’s only one additional story included in this volume of Twin Spica, and it’s “Another Spica.” Of the additional stories I’ve seen in these volumes, “Another Spica” have been my least favorite, because they feel more like they’re being done to give the manga author a chance to be a part of the world of Twin Spica. I’m really hoping that it turns out I’m wrong about this, and that there’s actually a point to the “Another Spica” shorts.

Yaginuma continues to impress me with his character development and his writing. He’s writing the story in such a way that it’s not only dramatic, but it keeps the reader interested in what’s happening and trying to guess where the story will go. I really liked how much development Yaginuma put into Kiriu in this volume of Twin Spica, because Kiriu has now become a character that the reader can empathize with and start caring about. I have a feeling that Asumi and Kiriu’s developing friendship will be adding a new layer to the story.

I have really been enjoying Twin Spica, and I think it’s a manga series that should be read and given a chance by readers.

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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.