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Manga Review: Twin Spica Volume Six by Kou Yaginuma

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Twin Spica Volume Six is a manga by Kou Yaginuma, and it was published in North America by Vertical, Inc. in 2011. 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 continues with the survival training exercise for Asumi and her friends that was introduced in Volume Five. After the exercise, we see more interaction between Asumi and Kiriu, the young man she started becoming friends with in the previous volume.

Marika’s character development continues in this volume, and with the hints that are dropped in this volume, I believe I have an idea of what the situation is for her. And if I’m right, it could be a very interesting development, especially when her friends find out the truth. Asumi might be able to accept it, but I’m not sure how the rest of their friends would feel about it. I suspect this is a topic that will be explored in later volumes of the series.

The character of Shu Suzuki also receives some development in this volume. While previous volumes have hinted that he comes from a well-to-do family, it hadn’t been explained prior to this why he lives on his own in a run-down home. It was nice to finally get a little more background on this character, because it makes it a little easier to understand him and to want to care about him.

There’s also a small section of the story devoted to a guest speaker who comes to the Tokyo Space School. This guest speaker is able to help provide more backstory for Mr. Lion, the ghost of an astronaut who was part of The Lion’s doomed mission that only Asumi can see.

There are also two additional stories included in this volume: “Tiny, Tiny Aqua Star” and “Another Spica.” “Tiny, Tiny Aqua Star” provides more backstory for Asumi during her elementary school years. In this story, some of the other girls in Asumi’s class pick on her because she can’t prove that she can see the astronaut ghost. We also see Fuchuya’s grandfather giving Asumi some of the sparklers that he makes to help cheer her up; this is something that was referenced near the end of the main story in this volume of Twin Spica, so it was nice to see it show up in this flashback story. “Tiny, Tiny Aqua Star” takes an interesting turn after the mother of one of the girls taunting Asumi passes away.

“Another Spica” is still the author’s way of trying to insert himself into the Twin Spica universe. He’s basically interacting with people who look similar to the characters, and they also have similar names. He will occasionally see Asumi and Mr. Lion, and in this story, he has a brief interaction with Asumi. This is still my least favorite part of the Twin Spica volumes.

Now that I’m getting further along into Twin Spica, it’s been great to see how much the characters and their backstories are starting to dovetail together. What makes this even better for the reader is the fact that a lot of the time, the characters don’t realize that their stories are interconnected; this helps the reader feel like they know a secret that the characters don’t. As a writer, I can see a number of possibilities that can happen as the characters start learning some of these various “secrets,” and that makes me want to continue reading to find out what happens to these characters. Since Volume Six is the halfway point for the Twin Spica series, I suspect that these various story possibilities will be coming into play very soon.

If you’ve read and enjoyed Twin Spica up to this point, I’m very confident that you’ll also enjoy Volume Six.

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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.