My Monster Secret Volume 02 Manga Review

My Monster Secret Volume 01 Manga Review
Jitsu wa Watashi wa/実は私は 02
My Monster Secret: “Actually, I am…” 02

–> Buy My Monster Secret Volume 02 from Amazon.com

***SPOILERS***

My Monster Secret volume 02Having read and enjoyed Seven Seas’ My Monster Secret volume 01, it was not a difficult choice to pick up the My Monster Secret volume 02. Fortunately, the fun of the first volume continued as new characters are introduced.

A Look at the Volume 02 Story

For My Monster Secret volume 02, chapter 8 covers Youko and Nagisa attempting to overcome Youko’s problem with the sun and tanning. Chapter 9 features Mikan revealing a secret of her relationship with Asahi while having Asahi’s male friends strung up. For chapter 10, Asahi and Youko go on a date to an amusement park now that Youko knows about sunblock.

In chapter 11, Youko’s childhood friend Shirou, a wolf”man”, shows up. However, when exposed to even a picture of a full moon, the male Shirou becomes Shiho, a nympho teen girl. The story continues in chapter 12 with Shiho accompanying Asahi and Youko to Youko’s apartment. There, Asahi learns that Shiho is aware of everything that happens while Shirou is awake, but when Shiho takes over, Shirou doesn’t know. As such, when Shirou pops out from time to time, he assumes the worst of Asahi.

In chapter 13, Shiho transfers to the same high school as Asahi and company. Nagisa gets so frustrated by this, her human mech unit runs out of power, forcing Asahi to have to assist her in spite of interference from Shiho. The fallout of this happens in chapter 14 where Asahi has to join Youko, Shiho, and Nagisa for a makeup Home Ec class to make curry. Naturally, this ends in disaster.

Finally, the last story covers chapters 15 and 16. Asahi and Youko see a young teen girl with horns, eating junk food as she walks the hall of the school. Youko wants to pet her while Asahi wonders if the horns are real. Youko gets her wish of petting the head of this girl, named KOUMOTO Akane, who’s related to their homeroom teacher KOUMOTO Akari. Akane pretends the horns are fake, but she’s exposed when Akari-sensei shows up. Akane reveals she’s really the principal of the school and a devil. Youko doesn’t believe Akane is thousands of years old, nor their principal, leading the two to have a childish rivalry while Asahi and Akari can only look on helplessly.

The Harem Comedy Continues

Clearly, My Monster Secret is a harem manga series. We have Youko getting a little jealous when Shiho shows up and shamelessly flirts with Asahi. Yet ironically, Youko has no clue that Asahi is in love with her. At the same time, her own, growing feelings for Asahi are something she’s not aware of. Yet they have a sweet date at the amusement park. Further, Youko’s parents (human mother, vampire father) attended this school together, so there’s that romantic element. I mean lets face it, Youko and Asahi have to be together when all is said and done. 😉

It is hard to say how real Shiho’s affections for Asahi are. She claims to be a nympho, and her character is fond of Asahi. However, she appears to be more of a catalyst character for both Youko and Nagisa. As such, Shiho also made Nagisa jealous, so much so that her human mech body ran out of power. I found that rather amusing.

While Mikan only got a single chapter, her role in the harem is one of accepting that she will never be seen by Asahi as a girl. I found this to be an interesting thing on her part.

Enter the Wolf-‘man’

Masuda-sensei uses the gender bender element to introduce us to the wolfman Shirou. Rather than look like a werewolf, Shirou just looks like a punk with a lot of pointy teeth. That was a funny twist, so that when the high strung Shirou sees the moon, he turns into Shiho, who looks like a normal, human female. The humor here comes from Youko getting jealous and forcing Shiho to turn to Shirou with a picture of the moon, then Asahi (or Youko) having to change Shirou back to Shiho to save Asahi’s life. Plus, as I said earlier, Shiho is a catalyst character in the harem.

I have to admit that while I’m not into the gender bender stuff, this comic form is one I’m OK with. I was first introduced to the concept in Akamatsu-sensei’s early manga work A.I. Love You, where AI Program 40 became Forty-chan or Forty-kun, depending on if the character said “boy” or “girl.” I found that to be quite humorous. The same kind of humor exists with Shirou and Shiho, only with Shiho being the only one totally aware of everything that happens. Having Shiho have knowledge of what Shirou does adds to the humor for me.

Enter the Devil Girl

The last new character to be introduced is Akane. While she is not in the Asahi harem (at least, not yet), I found her to be the funniest character so far. She starts out seeming like a sweet, young, high school girl who happens to wear horns. Then thanks to her great-great-granddaughter (Akari-sensei) getting involved, we get to see that Akane is actually a devil girl who’s thousands of years old, and who has quite a sadistic side as well as a huge weakness for junk food.

While that element was funny enough, having Youko refuse to belief that Akane is as old as she claims, or that Akane is actually the principal of the school creates a whole new humor element. I probably shouldn’t have laughed as much as I did over the childish antics of Youko and Akane. I think it was funnier to me because I didn’t expect it. It is as if Youko and Akane have developed a rivalry of sorts. Although Akane is insanely powerful, her weakness for junk food snacks allows Youko to toy with her like crazy. I loved it.

Seven Seas

Unlike the first volume, there are no color pages at the start of My Monster Secret volume 02. There may not have been color pages in the Japanese tankoubon release. I haven’t checked. Japanese honorifics are used, and thanks to the Nibley Twins, this volume feels like a proper adaptation rather than a localization attempt that seems to be plaguing some manga titles these days. As usual for Seven Seas, there are no translator notes, but there are an occasional between panel notes.

There are some omake 4-koma comic strips scattered throughout the volume. There are two pages at the front, dedicated to character introductions. There’s a thank you page from Masuda-sensei. Otherwise, other real extras to speak of.

Conclusion

In the end, My Monster Secret volume 02 continues to be a pretty fun foray into the realm of the harem genre with monster girls and tiny alien girl in a human, mecha suit. After reading this volume, I’m rather looking forward to finally reading the third volume. (I’m so far behind!)


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12 Responses to “My Monster Secret Volume 02 Manga Review”

  1. NullApostle says:

    I don’t know if you heard the news, but this series will be finished with 22 volumes. A good decision by the mangaka, any longer and it would face the danger of becoming bland.

    Akane is the primary troll character of this series, she’ll only become funnier over time.

    This is not a STANDARD harem comedy. I can’t believe how well Masuda handles the subject.
    Mind, the 2nd half of this series ventures into more serious territory, but it won’t lose the comedy aspect.

    You made a good decision picking this up. Each volume will basically be better than the last one.

    • AstroNerdBoy says:

      I don’t know if you heard the news, but this series will be finished with 22 volumes.

      I’m not sure how far along the series is at this point. ^_^; Still, having only read two volumes, knowing i have 20 more volumes of fun is a good thing. 🙂

      Akane is the primary troll character of this series, she’ll only become funnier over time.

      Ha!ha! Good to know.

      This is not a STANDARD harem comedy. I can’t believe how well Masuda handles the subject.

      Yeah, and I think I’m sensing that through the two volumes. Based on what you’ve said, I’m rather looking forward to reading more. I’ve just got to find volume three among the mounds of purchased manga I have sitting here unread and unorganized. ^_^;;;;

  2. Mattcgw says:

    Since our reviewing monster girl series(s)
    May I give a very strong recommendation to miss kobayashi’s dragon maid anime, it’s got quite the buzz, and I myself would describe it to be excellent.

    • AstroNerdBoy says:

      The term “Miss” in the anime’s title is a red flag for me. It looks cute and sweet from screen captures I’ve seen.

      • ghostbeetle says:

        Got to agree with Mattcgw there – Kobayashi-san, at least the anime so far, is a funny, gently absurd, light-hearted piece of entertainment with a genuinely touching side in regard to human (or human-dragon) relationships! Kobayashi-san herself is in this tradition of central characters who are shrewdly socially sensitive, and observant of the emotional welfare of the people around them who they themselves positively choose to create relationships with, despite the fact that they basically are fairly self-sufficient and not overly fond of conventional social norms.
        The Kawaii-ness is tempered by the genuine core of humanity of the characters.

        • AstroNerdBoy says:

          I’ve seen a lot of images from it, and it does look cute. And it does appear that the subtitles are using Japanese honorifics.

          • ghostbeetle says:

            Yes, they mostly seem to use honorifics. Not completely sure but it seems it is just “Kobayashi-san” which is translated as “Miss Kobayashi”. Other instances of “san”, “kun” etc. seem to be carried over into the Engl. subs (as far as I have seen).

          • AstroNerdBoy says:

            That makes no sense to me to have it “Miss Kobayashi” instead of “Kobayashi-san.” But Crunchyroll subtitles have been weird at times.

  3. NullApostle says:

    ^ Speaking of anime, this season is one of the BEST ones in recent memory.
    I haven’t watched so many shows in years.
    – ACCA
    – Demi-chan wa Kataritai
    – Gabriel DropOut
    – Kobayashi-san Chi no Maidragon
    – Kono Subarashii Sekai ni Shukufuku wo! 2
    – Little Witch Academia (TV)
    – Onihei
    – Youjo Senki

    Eight shows! Usually I only watch 2-3 shows of a season, if that.

    • AstroNerdBoy says:

      Initially, I thought I’d watch Little Witch Academia. But then I saw how busy this cour is for me work-wise with business travel and massive numbers of projects to get done. So I abandoned plans to episode-blog it. As to Kobayashi-san, I saw the title “Miss” in the English adaptation which was a red flag to me.

      The other titles, I’m not aware of. I should at least take a peek to see their blurbs.

    • NullApostle says:

      Some opinions on the shows after a few weeks of airing.

      – ACCA moves slowly, but the story is pretty great. Has a very European comic flair.
      – Demi-chan is a very faithful adaptatiion of the manga and is fun to watch. I appreciate the different, more “scientific” approach to monster girls.
      – Gabriel DropOut is pretty middling. The manga is pretty fun, but the repetetiveness of the jokes is made very obvious in the anime.
      – Kobayashi Maid Dragon is good all around. Faithful adaptation and very good animation.
      – KonoSuba’s animation is still very mediocre, but it fits the story and is as funny as the first.
      – Little Witch Academia has slipped a few tiers in my internal ranking. Akko is just a very irritating character – pretty much the hot-blooded shounen (idiot-) hero type. The world is still fascinating, though.
      – Onihei has started worse than I expected, but has improved since. I like jidaigeki stories, so I’m fairly pleased by the show.
      – Youjo Senki, Youjo Senki… I enjoy it more than I probably should. The animation is very good, but the character design is a bit lacking (compared to the LN/manga they made the female “sidekick” very, very ugly). Still, I rank it highest in my mind, followd by Demi-chan 2nd and Kobayashi 3rd.

      Haven’t yet regretted watching any of the shows.

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