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Nessa's Thoughts

Just a British girl who reads a bit too much.

Currently reading

The Dead Zone
Stephen King
The Diving Bell And The Butterfly
Jean-Dominique Bauby
Clarissa, or, the History of a Young Lady
Samuel Richardson, Angus Ross
Orange Is the New Black: My Year in a Women's Prison
Piper Kerman
The Cuckoo's Calling
Robert Galbraith
Dogs: Bullets & Carnage, Volume 1 - Shirow Miwa 'Read Dogs!' My friends on GoodReads exclaimed. 'I'm sure you'll like it, it's a sci-fi dystopia where genetic manipulation is the norm and crime runs rampant.' I may be paraphrasing a bit, but the general consensus I've found online is that one either LOVES Dogs from head to toe and side to side, or they merely think it's okay.I stand in-between those two camps.I absolutely adore the setting. It's grimy, horrible, and filled with some horribly seedy characters. Then you have Haine and Badou, two badasses who are the focus of the first volume. It seems that they don't like each other at all, when in fact they work extremely well together. They rescue people, fight criminals, bite said criminals in the face (then claim it was just a peck on the cheek), and… that's about it. It's highly action based, so if you like that kind of thing, great! I was really worried after reading the first few chapters that it would devolve into action scene after action scene, but every now and again, a little golden nugget of plot shone through.And this little chunk of plot was enough to keep me going. I would be reading action scene after action scene, and then my interest was piqued. Normally I would have complained about this emphasis on action over storyline, but Dogs' setting is interesting enough to keep me going. In fact, it's a lot like Nitro+Chiral's visual novel/anime Togainu no Chi. Dark dystopia where crime is an everyday occurrence? Check. Plenty of action scenes? Check. Badass main characters? Check. But of course, that's where the similarities end. (Togainu no Chi does apparently translate to 'Blood of the Reprimanded Hound, though. Heh.)So, while I did get vested into the story of Dogs, and am very curious as to where it will lead, I do have some complaints. I'm not interested in any other characters outside of Haine, Badou, Naoto, and the twins. In fact, they're so good at what they do that whatever situation they get into, they can usually handle with aplomb. Too much, in fact. Dogs is VERY heavy when it comes to action, and so much so that watching them blast through legions of ne'er-do-wells began to tire me even before the first volume had finished. By the time I had finished, I was curious enough about the plot to continue reading the manga, but I was also sincerely hoping that a bit more plot could shine through. It's a little bit like Hellsing. Kouta Hirano knows he can't just show Alucard being a complete and utter badass every single chapter. So he mixes in all different kinds of plot elements, such as Seras' awkward transformation into a force to be reckoned with, Integra's past, etcetera. Here, there's only action, action, action, with only some plot shining through. Enough to pique my interest, but not enough to escape a 3.5/5 rating.(This review is also available on my blog: http://book-wyrm.blogspot.co.uk/2012/07/dogs-bullets-and-carnage-1-by-shirow.html)