THE TIME GUARDIAN (Toki no Mamorisha, “The Time Guardian”) ??????) • Daimuro Kishi (story), Tawao Ichinose (art) • CMX (2007) • Akita Shoten (Princess, 2005-2006) • 2 volumes • Shôjo Fantasy • All Ages (brief violence)
In the hard-to-find Kusaka Pawn Shop, time and memories are bought and sold: you can be in two places at once, stop time, or go back in time and relive a special day. Teenage Miu stumbles into the store and ends up working for the handsome store owner and his talking frog pal, dressing up in a maid costume and getting involved in the lives of the customers. A pleasant short series in the xxxHOLic and Yume Kira Dream Shoppe mode, The Time Guardian has a light mood–no cruel twist endings here–and polished, detailed artwork, somewhere between shonen and shojo. The shortness of the series keeps it fresh throughout the run, and the pawnshop is imaginatively drawn, with interesting clock and hourglass motifs.
*** (three stars)
Today’s winner is Andrew H. of California! Congratulations, Andrew!
I’d also like to call out to one of my good friends and favorite writers, Jake Forbes, who is giving away some manga of his own at gobblin.net. To have a chance at winning, though, you’ll have to solve one of the clever logic puzzles he uses in his own Labyrinthine fantasy graphic novels. Please check him out, and of course, return here tomorrow for more manga giveaways!