Soul Eater, vol. 4

9780759531277_manga-soul-eater-volume-4-primary.jpgThis volume was more lowkey than previous volumes have been. That’s not to say that I didn’t enjoy it any less; it’s just that these chapters were maybe more mellow. If Soul Eater has, up to now, been a rabble rouser, these chapters felt more… intimate?

Intimate is an odd adjective to use here, considering four of the five chapters involve battles, but there you go.

The first two chapters see our DWMA crew battle the guy Medusa’s gang freed from prison, now christened “Free.” Maka and Soul have a really tough time fighting him, not helped by the fact that Free is technically immortal. But thanks to some quick thinking on their part, they’re able to incapacitate him long enough to get out of there. The problem is that Soul gets infected with the mysterious Black Blood afflicting Crona. The school nurse doesn’t seem to think much is wrong, but it still bothers Maka.

The second chapter is about the DWMA crew studying for a big test. Maka puts pressure on herself to take top marks and follow in her mother’s footsteps. This chapter was pretty lighthearted overall, a welcome change of pace from the previous chapters. I was proud of Maka for coming out on top, and felt bad for Black Star and Kid……

The next chapters, about Kid meeting the Flying Dutchman and fighting Crona aboard a ghost ship, went by in a flash, so I don’t remember too much about them. I will say, though, that these chapters helped set up what we will encounter in the next volume, what with the Flying Dutchman planting a bug in Kid’s ear about the Kishin closest to their school. Now what could that mean?

This volume didn’t have as much going for it as what came before. That’s not to say it’s bad, but it just lacks a lot of the fun of previous chapters. Reading Soul Eater means getting to hang with Maka, Black Star, and Kid for a bit, though, and that is still pretty fun in itself.

Soul Eater is written and drawn by Ohkubo Atsushi and was serialized in Square Enix’s Monthly Shonen Gangan from 2004-2013. It was later collected in 25 volumes. It has been licensed in North America by Yen Press, who released all 25 volumes between 2009 and 2015. Check out Yen Press’ page on the manga here.

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