Reading Level: Adult
Length: 200 pages
Publisher: VIZ Media LLC
Release Date: August 13, 2013
Stand Alone or Series: 1st book in the Magi: The Labyrinth of Magic series
Rating: 4.5/5 stars
I got this book for Christmas, I actually added to my wishlist after reading a glowing review of it on the blog It’s All Comic to Me. This was a very well done Manga, I really enjoyed it and will definitely be reading more in the series. To date I haven’t read a ton of Manga. However I have read and loved the Hellsing Manga series, many of the Berserks, and a good portion of the Vampire Game series so I am not a complete Noob 🙂
Aladdin is a strange young boy, with a super crazy flute. He journeys to a new continent where strange Dungeons occasionally appear out of the sands. In the city there he meets Ali Baba. The two agree to go on a quest to try and clear the most dangerous of the Dungeons to claim the treasure within.
This book is a good balance of world-building, characterization, adventure, and humor. I really enjoyed it.
Aladdin is a strange character, he looks like a young boy but obviously has experience and appreciation (especially of women) outside of a young boy’s experience. This makes for some very funny scenes. He is an interesting blend of naivete and worldly experience.
Aladdin also carries around a flute that has a genie in it, kind of. This makes for some hilarious scenes as well.
Ali Baba is of course out to make some money (after Aladdin kind of spoils things for him at his current job). When he sees the power of Aladdin’s..uh..flute he decides that this is his chance to finally conquer a Dungeon.
The Dungeons are a very cool concept. Basically they are giant structures that have been rising out of the sands. They are full of ancient monsters, ancient evils, and loads of treasure. The worst of the Dungeons (the one where thousands have entered and never returned) is in the very city they are in. Ali Baba decides that this is the place him and Aladdin need to go.
I was very impressed by how well the world and characters were developed in this little Manga. Both the world and characters were very engaging and it was hard to put the book down. When I was done I wanted to read more!
The author also has some cute asides in here about how they ended up writing Manga. This is an interesting story in itself and I enjoyed reading these asides throughout the book.
Overall a stellar start to an adventure fantasy manga series. I enjoyed the world, the characters, the adventure, the magic, and the humor. Recommended to those who love fantasy Manga.