Tower of the Future Vol. #02 -

Anime/Manga Reviews

Mania Grade: B-

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  • Art Rating: B-
  • Packaging Rating: B-
  • Text/Translatin Rating: B-
  • Age Rating: 13 & Up
  • Released By: CMX
  • MSRP: 9.95
  • Pages: 176
  • ISBN: 1401208150
  • Size: B6
  • Orientation: Right to Left

Tower of the Future Vol. #02

By Jarred Pine     October 25, 2006
Release Date: February 01, 2006

Tower of the Future Vol.#02

Creative Talent
Writer/Artist:Saki Hiwatari
Translated by:Glenn Rich
Adapted by:Glenn Rich

What They Say
Still shocked by his mother's deathbed revelation, Takeru puts aside his anger and shame to grant her final wish. He agrees to allow Hyoju, the once-secret daughter of his father's first relationship, to come live with them. But only-child Takeru has a lot to learn when it comes to making room for the newest member of his family.

The Review
With the first volume of Saki Hiwatari's Tower of the Future, I was drawn to its uncertainty more than anything else. Was this going to be a tale of family drama or something more supernatural resembling Takeru's RPG games? After reading the second volume, I'm no closer to the answer, but a little more frustrated than before.

Most of the second volume revolves around Takeru dealing with the emotions surrounding the introduction of a new family member, his half-sister Hyoju, who Takeru was just recently informed about at this mother's deathbed. There is a lot of potential for exploration of a whole smorgasbord of issues with this type of family drama, but it's just too bad that Takeru and Hyoju keep asking the same questions repeatedly ('Do you want me to live there?', 'I don't know', etc). It's a snail's pace and I couldn't help but want to give each of the characters a swift kick in the pants to get moving. And the static nature of the storyline is reflected in Hiwatari's artwork, which is flat and empty throughout most of the volume. Thankfully, the face-to-face introduction is handled quite well with a nice touching conclusion and a couple well illustrated compositions.

Then about three-quarters of the way through the book, we get what looks to be a preview for the next volume, which begins right with the next chapter. The story picks up six months later with Hyoju settled in and Takeru going to a public school rather than the prestigious private school his mother wanted him to go. The family drama is dropped in favor of high school romance as Takeru finds out his crush Ichigo is also a student at his new high school. The transition is terribly awkward and I was actually a little let down that there wasn't more left to resolve with Takeru and Hyoju, as she seems to comfortably find a background spot for the rest of the volume.

The one thing that remains the same between the two stories however is Zen, the strange, proper little boy with cryptic messages and psychic abilities. His role becomes a little bigger by book's end, but there's still no clue at what direction the story will take. I have a '3 Volume Rule' with titles, so the next volume will either make it or break it for me.


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