Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Manga Review: PHANTOM THIEF JEANNE Volume 1


CARTOONIST: Arina Tanemura
TRANSLATION: Tetsuchiro Miyaki
LETTERS: Inori Fukuda Trant
EDITOR: Nancy Thislethwaite
ISBN: 978-1-4215-6590-3; paperback (March 2014); Rated “T” for “Teen”
258pp, B&W, $10.99 U.S., $12.99 CAN, £6.99 UK

Japanese comics creator, Arina Tanemura, is known for such manga (comics) as The Gentlemen’s Alliance † and Sakura Hime: The Legend of Princess Sakura.  VIZ Media is now publishing Tanemura’s second manga series, Kamikaze Kaito Jeanne (1998), as Phantom Thief Jeanne.

The series focuses on high school student, 16-year-old Maron Kusakabe, who is also Phantom Thief Jeanne.  She sneaks into private art collections, looking to steal paintings in which demons reside.  She seals the demons before they can devour human hearts.

Phantom Thief Jeanne, Vol. 1 (Chapters 1 to 6) introduces Phantom Thief Jeanne on her latest mission to steal demon-infused paintings.  Now, she has a rival, the mysterious Phantom Thief Sinbad, and he promises to steal the paintings before she does.  At the same time, there is a new student at Maron’s school, Momokuri Academy.  He is Chiaki Nagoya, and Maron wonders if he is also Sinbad.

Apparently, Phantom Thief Jeanne was manga creator Arina Tanemura’s second manga series.  After reading the first two chapters, I found Phantom Thief Jeanne to be somewhat juvenile, which surprised me.  I have read a lot of Tanemura’s manga the last several years, and I learned that despite the pretty art, her manga can be quite dark and even edgy.

Phantom Thief Jeanne Volume 1 is neither dark nor edgy, but this is early Tanemura.  However, this series is cute, although there are a few moments with a bit of tartness.  I am somewhat interested in reading one more volumes, but I cannot say that I’ll be eagerly awaiting the next volume.  Of course, fans of Arina Tanemura’s manga will want to try Phantom Thief Jeanne.


Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux

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