“ Publisher: Shojo Beat Manga / Genre: Manga / Author: Bisco Hatori „
General Plot (shortened from my review of Vol 1)
The basic plot revolves around a scholarship student named Haruhi Fujioka, whom stumbles in upon the "Host Club" - a club devoted to helping the rich young ladies (and gentlemen if they are that way inclined) spend their leisure time happily - while looking for a quiet place to study. Here Haruhi meets the rest of the characters whom will remain with us throughout the story: Tamaki (the King), Kyoya (the Shadow King), Mitsukuni (Hunny), Takashi (Mori) and the twins, Hikaru and Kaoru, each of course has their special skill for entertaining the clients of the 'Host Club'. The series continues by describes interesting/humorous events that happen in and around the 'Host Club'.
Volume Specific Plot
The first story in this volume is similar to volume 2, in that the Host Club is again away from the school, but this time has gone to the beach and taken its clients with it. In this story the Host Club boys make a game out of finding out Haruhi's fear, and Haruhi tries to save some of the clients from 'commoners', whom are more like thugs, with consequences on her relationship with the Host Club. This then leads into the second story, where the Host Club are staying at Nekozawa's (the head of the Black Magic club) beachside home, and Haruhi has to learn from her mistakes with the thugs, and Tamaki finally finds out Haruhi's fears. The third story introduces some new female characters, whom turn up again later in the series, known as the Zuka (or 'White Lily') Club. These lot are certainly trouble as they try to woo Haruhi over to their all-girls school, leading to the Host Club, in their truly ridiculous style, trying to persuade her to stay. The fourth story is a halloween special of sorts, so everyone is in costume, but we get some more character development from the twins in this one. The fifth story starts off with Tamaki having a nightmare about Haruhi and ends up with the Host Club paying her a surprise visit at her home, much to her annoyance. We also briefly meet Haruhi's father for the first time.
As usual there is an extra manga at the end of the volume and this one consists of a short piece about Haruhi as a child living with her father. After this there is another extra called 'Excessive Theatre' where Bisco fulfills a few of the readers requests by drawing the Host Club members doing, saying or wearing things they never normally would.
Drawing - Style/Substance
The drawings in this volume are excellent, particularly with the amount of action, and the new/different costumes for things like the halloween special. Its also really lovely to see Haruhi and her father drawn as they were when they were younger, and to see some more new backgrounds.
There are an awful lot of extras we get in this volume, which really feels like you've got your monies worth. We also get a lot of new information about the characters and a few new characters thrown in as well, which makes this volume well worth the £6.99 it cost.
Unfortunately, since we get all the extras and the number of stories, there are less full page drawings/double page spreads, which are usually the real highlight of the drawings.
Overall, another very good volume from Bisco, which covers all the essentials of great manga: a good storyline, character development and excellent artwork.