"Girls with… Magic Swords?"- Magic Knights Rayearth- 7/10 Sugar Cubes

Whatever you think you can do or believe you can do, begin it. Action has magic, grace and power in it. ~Johann Wolfgang von Goethe quotes

Genre: Mahou Shoujo/ Adventure/ Fantasy

Review Status: Full (3 Volumes/ 3 Volumes)

Licensed: Licensed in the US

Art: While the panels can occasionally be confusing, the art is sparkly and clean. Though the character designs can seem slightly outdated, as it is one of their earlier works, CLAMP does it again!

Summary: Hikaru, Umi, and Fuu, girls from separate schools, find themselves linked together as they fall through the floor during a field trip to the Tokyo Tower. They land in a place called Cephiro, where their will controls what happens. They meet with Guru Clef and find out that they were summoned to save Princess Emeraude who has been imprisoned by High Priest Zagato. They learn magic and acquire weapons on their quest to save Cephiro from the evils of Zagato. (From ANN.com)

Review: This is a nice, short little fantasy series that’s good for a quick read. However, it being CLAMP, the story can be more involved than it would at first seem. From the standard power-ups, to the not so standard girl who gets the Prince (hint- it’s not the main heroine!), and an ending that is as bittersweet as atypical, this manga shows a superior sense of storytelling that hallmarks many of the works by this group.

The main characters are fairly well-rounded. You do come to care for their hardships and challenges, and can see how they grow as people and friends. You also get a surprising glimpse into the eyes of the main baddie and the princess which is touching and yet heartbreaking.

Overall, this is a good starter manga if you want to get into deeper, more involved works. It’s also good as a stand-alone if you’re pressed for time. And if you’re not into the ending, there’s also a sequel!

Recommended: Sure. It’s short and bittersweet. Maybe not for those young enough to understand the idea of sacrificing oneself for their love. 10 and over.

Other series you might like: Magic Knight Rayearth (anime, though S2 of the anime is different from the second half of the manga)
Card Captor Sakura (anime),
Chobits (manga and anime),
Ballad of a Shinigami (manga and anime),
Half Prince (manga),
Alice 19th (manga


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