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Kamikaze Girls (Manga)

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Meet Momoko, a "Lolita" decked out to the nines in the finest (and frilliest) of Victorian haute couture. The only scion of a drunken interlude between a cowardly yakuza and an inebriated bar-hostess, Momoko's mom has since split the scene, and, after various ill-fated scams that involve imitation brand name merchandise, Momoko's dad relocates them to the boondocks of rura Meet Momoko, a "Lolita" decked out to the nines in the finest (and frilliest) of Victorian haute couture. The only scion of a drunken interlude between a cowardly yakuza and an inebriated bar-hostess, Momoko's mom has since split the scene, and, after various ill-fated scams that involve imitation brand name merchandise, Momoko's dad relocates them to the boondocks of rural Ibaraki prefecture. To escape her humdrum existence, Momoko fanaticizes about French rococo, dreams of living in the palace of Versailles, and buys all her extremely lacy clothes from an expensive Tokyo boutique. Meet Ichiko, a tough-talking motorcycle grrrl (on a tricked-out moped) who leads a ladies-only biker gang known as the Ponytails. Together, this unlikeliest of duos strike out on a quest to find a legendary embroiderer, a journey on which they encounter conniving pachinko parlor managers, legendary street-punks, and anemic costumers. Who knows, they might just make it big...if only Ichiko would stop head butting Momoko in the forehead. Novala Takemoto's break-though novel KAMIKAZE GIRLS, already a cult-classic in Japan, is more than a wry coming-of-age picaresque, it's a new way of life.


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Meet Momoko, a "Lolita" decked out to the nines in the finest (and frilliest) of Victorian haute couture. The only scion of a drunken interlude between a cowardly yakuza and an inebriated bar-hostess, Momoko's mom has since split the scene, and, after various ill-fated scams that involve imitation brand name merchandise, Momoko's dad relocates them to the boondocks of rura Meet Momoko, a "Lolita" decked out to the nines in the finest (and frilliest) of Victorian haute couture. The only scion of a drunken interlude between a cowardly yakuza and an inebriated bar-hostess, Momoko's mom has since split the scene, and, after various ill-fated scams that involve imitation brand name merchandise, Momoko's dad relocates them to the boondocks of rural Ibaraki prefecture. To escape her humdrum existence, Momoko fanaticizes about French rococo, dreams of living in the palace of Versailles, and buys all her extremely lacy clothes from an expensive Tokyo boutique. Meet Ichiko, a tough-talking motorcycle grrrl (on a tricked-out moped) who leads a ladies-only biker gang known as the Ponytails. Together, this unlikeliest of duos strike out on a quest to find a legendary embroiderer, a journey on which they encounter conniving pachinko parlor managers, legendary street-punks, and anemic costumers. Who knows, they might just make it big...if only Ichiko would stop head butting Momoko in the forehead. Novala Takemoto's break-though novel KAMIKAZE GIRLS, already a cult-classic in Japan, is more than a wry coming-of-age picaresque, it's a new way of life.

30 review for Kamikaze Girls (Manga)

  1. 4 out of 5

    wrench

    Tough women. Tough femmes. Strong male ballerina. Motorbikes. Butches. Butches in dresses. Awesome outfits. Girl-crushes. And heaps more.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Anna

    Nope, still not over the terrible choice of title! The original "Shimotsuma Story" is very mundane which was exactly the point! (the tiny peach & strawberry worked into the embroidery-styled font is cute tho) Anyways, the first 3rd of this book is a very condensed, and very cliff's notes/blunt, summary of the original novel. The art isn't much to look at & lacks elegance. All the guys drawn in most generic fashion doesn't help either! The insane pompadour in the movie communicated everything abou Nope, still not over the terrible choice of title! The original "Shimotsuma Story" is very mundane which was exactly the point! (the tiny peach & strawberry worked into the embroidery-styled font is cute tho) Anyways, the first 3rd of this book is a very condensed, and very cliff's notes/blunt, summary of the original novel. The art isn't much to look at & lacks elegance. All the guys drawn in most generic fashion doesn't help either! The insane pompadour in the movie communicated everything about a certain character in 5 seconds, the manga failed this completely Then there's a very clumsy Ichigo follow up shot and 2 origi-chara one-shots (that have nothing to do with lolita, just artist's original works) The one-shots were the most interesting bit of the page count, and even that isn't very good! Seriously, even by shoujo standards a high school girl [?] half-blackmailing an older married [?] guy for an expensive date to "feel like a real adult" is terrible

  3. 5 out of 5

    Aja

    For the Novala written stories, they're enjoyable plot-wise. I like enjoying Ichigo & Momoko over and over again. Hope to make some fan art of them sometimes. However, the Kanesada stories about the underage "princess" having a relationship with an older, divorced man is still in bad taste. I wish there could have been a few more stories about Ichigo & Momoko or similar friendship stories of the like. On top of that, Kanesada's artwork in composing the pages isn't as appealing as the cover and th For the Novala written stories, they're enjoyable plot-wise. I like enjoying Ichigo & Momoko over and over again. Hope to make some fan art of them sometimes. However, the Kanesada stories about the underage "princess" having a relationship with an older, divorced man is still in bad taste. I wish there could have been a few more stories about Ichigo & Momoko or similar friendship stories of the like. On top of that, Kanesada's artwork in composing the pages isn't as appealing as the cover and the chapter covers are.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Zara Mcaspurren

    Kamikaze Girls is one of my favourite movies. I also really like the original novel, though I do rate the movie higher, and when I was aware there was a manga adaptation, I was really interested to see and read it. After all, I quite enjoy manga and the fact that the original novel has a lot of reference to visual styles that I've seen work well in other manga made me think that it was bound to be a great thing. It was a single volume which I did have some apprehension on, but at the same ti Kamikaze Girls is one of my favourite movies. I also really like the original novel, though I do rate the movie higher, and when I was aware there was a manga adaptation, I was really interested to see and read it. After all, I quite enjoy manga and the fact that the original novel has a lot of reference to visual styles that I've seen work well in other manga made me think that it was bound to be a great thing. It was a single volume which I did have some apprehension on, but at the same time was a bit glad of because manga can be pricey. ... The problem is the actual movie adaptation is a very short part of the overall volume, and heavily truncated, leaving good parts of the story out. The art is quite nice, though there's a tendency to make any male under a certain age look ridiculously handsome, which admittedly may just be a thing to me - I quite liked that there wasn't an entire pretty boy cast in the film. The volume also contains a manga adaptation of the sequel which has never really been translated to English as far as I know. It features Ichigo falling for the twin brother of the guy she fell for in the original story. Said twin brother happens to be a ballet dancer. I will give credit, they take the time to point out that ballet dancers have to be strong and very in shape, but overall I felt this sequel story a little lacking. There's also a bonus story by the artist that... I was not into. Had it been excluded I wouldn't have been bothered. Overall? ... It was okay. I didn't feel as into it as I did in the way of the film or the actual novel. I'm still glad to have it and to say I've read it, but I don't think it's going to be one that will be often re-read, and my main go to when someone mentions this title is always going to be the film. ... I really would like the see the whole sequel novel translated to English, though...

  5. 4 out of 5

    Clare Ruesga

    I am new to the Manga world so I have been reading different styles to get a taste of whats out there. This was my first experience with Lolita's and Yankis in a shojo genre. It was different, hard to follow at times, but entertaining. I did not understand the third story with a completely different set of characters and how it fits in with the first two stories. I am new to the Manga world so I have been reading different styles to get a taste of whats out there. This was my first experience with Lolita's and Yankis in a shojo genre. It was different, hard to follow at times, but entertaining. I did not understand the third story with a completely different set of characters and how it fits in with the first two stories.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Tulipsaki

    Mostly good. Gave a third experience of the Kamikaze Girls after the movie and the book itself. But I knocked off a star because the final manga was creepy and NOT kamikaze girls! Waste of story space. No thanks.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Angie

    Delightful and fun adventures of Momoko and Ichigo, though the art leaves something to be desired it does capture clothing well.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Reza Aleeya

    Not bad

  9. 5 out of 5

    TT

    2.5 stars, ok book, not a keeper.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Danielle

    Was not a fan of the bonus stories.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Judyth (Geeky Reading)

    ~2/5 [Also available at my blog.] I believe I have stated this before, but I love VIZ Media. More specifically, Shojo Beat. They are, by far, my favorite manga provider. I have read most of their releases, save for, probably, a handful, and you could probably see that I’ve reviewed more of their books than any other companies. I realized, somewhat recently, that I’d missed some of their older one-shots. At the time, I guess I just had little interest in them, and then had mostly forgotten about the ~2/5 [Also available at my blog.] I believe I have stated this before, but I love VIZ Media. More specifically, Shojo Beat. They are, by far, my favorite manga provider. I have read most of their releases, save for, probably, a handful, and you could probably see that I’ve reviewed more of their books than any other companies. I realized, somewhat recently, that I’d missed some of their older one-shots. At the time, I guess I just had little interest in them, and then had mostly forgotten about them. Upon seeing this volume at the bookstore, though, I decided to pick it up. And was a bit disappointed. The main reason I hadn’t picked this one up before, I think, was because of the artwork. I’m usually very picky about this; if I don’t like the art, I don’t want to read it. For this one, I thought, I’ll give it a try anyway; it’s only one book. The art style didn’t really get any better. It wasn’t bad, and I guess I kind of got used to it, but it was definitely not my favorite. The storyline I also didn’t particularly care for. The main storyline, two chapters, was about Momoko, a Lolita girl, who decides to help Ichigo, a yanki girl, find this certain store. On the way, they go to this Lolita store, where Momoko drags Ichigo into helping the owner with this modeling thing. And then in the second chapter, Ichigo has to face this crush she has on a boy that’s marrying a friend of hers, while forming a relationship with the boy’s brother. None of this sounds too bad, but the whole thing just jumped much too quickly. Their friendship formed at a reasonable pace, and I can look past the two girls helping with the modeling thing because, even if it annoys me, it’s a typical thing to happen. But the love thing I did not like. Momoko has reason to like the guy who owns the Lolita shop, but that didn’t really seem to go anywhere; at least, it didn’t show us if it did. But Ichigo fell in love with this yanki guy upon first sight and after having a very tiny conversation, in what was the most unbelievable bout of insta-love I have ever seen. And of course Momoko can tell, and then Ichigo has a hard time getting over it when she finds out that he’s marrying her yanki friend, a girl who she looks up to. And then she starts getting close with the guys brother, and I didn’t really believe their relationship either. The general plot didn’t bother me, and it could have been good, but it just wasn’t done very well. After that, there was another short story, one chapter plus a tiny extra. I had hoped it would be better, but it really wasn’t. Titled Koyubi Hime (The Pinky-Ring Princess), it’s about a high school girl who ends up forcing this older guy into a date with her, and then falls for him. My biggest problem with this, is how the girl forced the date. She kept something of his to force him into it, claiming to want to be an adult, act like an adult, be treated like an adult, when she was obviously very childish. And then her ending resolution on that just didn’t fit or resolve anything on that matter. Not for me, at least. At first it bothered me that he’d agreed to the date, and did some stuff with her, when he was supposed to be married, and why she would do this with a married man. But then it turns out he’s actually divorced, which I’d expected, and then that makes me wonder why he agreed to go out with this high school girl when he didn't care about the ring. It was just… dumb. It was all just dumb and I didn’t enjoy it. The extra story, only a few pages long, was about their relationship later, and it was rather cute. It was probably my favorite part of the book. Didn’t really make up for the rest of it, but, you know, was still pretty good. I probably wouldn't read another of Kanesada's works, and don't really have much interest in the novel this was based on, even though I'm sure it's better. I do plan on getting another of Shojo Beat's one-shots if I find one like I did this one, though.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Becky

    This is a review on the manga. Since this story has 3 different versions, a novel, a manga and a movie book (?) there is one other book by this name, by Stefan Gesell? But it is a totally different story I first heard about this story online. On a movie site called 'Flixster'. I really like Lolita fashion and also I love old fashioned French fashion, I think it is really pretty. So I had a look to check out the book. Decided on the manga. The front cover Was really attractive to me The manga is spl This is a review on the manga. Since this story has 3 different versions, a novel, a manga and a movie book (?) there is one other book by this name, by Stefan Gesell? But it is a totally different story I first heard about this story online. On a movie site called 'Flixster'. I really like Lolita fashion and also I love old fashioned French fashion, I think it is really pretty. So I had a look to check out the book. Decided on the manga. The front cover Was really attractive to me The manga is split up into 4 stories. The main kamikaze girls story, a short sequel to that and 2 stories not about the Kamikaze girls, hut about a young girl who wants to feel like an adult and starts dating and living with a married man. Plus a small extract at the back about the novel version of this book. All the art in this manga is done by one person entirely. The two kamikaze girls stories are just written by the author. The two other stories are by the illustrator. The illustrater done everything in this manga, apart from the Kamikaze story (they turned it into art, which I just explained). Hope that makes sense! I got the book in November last year. But decided on taking a read finally now. It is ok I guess. I liked the art. But I just couldn't really follow it. Remembering all the characters names I found quite difficult being Japanese and all the guys looked the same to me. The masculine main girl character (not Momoko) looked too much like a man I got her confused with male characters. She has no eyelashes, so it got confusing. I also had no attachment to any characters. Momoko is completely...strange. She is so obsessed with Lolita fashion! And I found her quite selfish at times. It is not known how she pays for the fashion in the manga, But I believe it is explained in the novel she steals off her parents. In one point of the manga, I think she says she has never bought from 'baby the stars shine bright', but it seems like she does. The story is very hard to follow in my opinion. It is also gets a little violent in one point and one particular scene creeped me out. People who have read this manga might know what I mean. (blooding dripping side of lip scene!!! Argh!!). Eventually Momoko and the other lead character become pretty close and Momoko learns to be less selfish. But i was still very disappointed in this story. I might pick up the novel and see if I can follow, like and understand it better. The sequel story to the main I sort of enjoyed more. But I still didn't like it too much. The final two stories...well. Completely random ones. They have nothing to do with the 'Kamikaze Girl's story. The manga back cover and front mentions nothing of them at all too! Strange! The story is called 'Pinky Ring Princess' It is about this girl, who meets a married man and wants to be treated like an adult. She is tired of being called 'cute' etc. Somehow he agrees and they sleep together (ew!! She is so young and he is married!) and he gives her a pinky ring. In the second story they finally 'do it' for real and it seems like at the end he falls for her. I don't really understand what went on in the story. I felt it moved really fast. I don't even know what went on too much. That is why I'm not too huge on manga. The Japanese names and remembering them, following stories...really difficult for me. The only manga I have been able to understand pretty well and enjoy thoroughly is 'stepping on roses'. It is less complicated with how it is set up. 3 stars. 3 because it wasn't an awful story and had pretty art. Just not my cup of tea I might check out the novel. Depends. But then again, the art is practically the only reason I kept reading this manga! So I don't know. I don't know much about the other version of this story. Pictures of the movie and Japanese writing? Something like that?

  13. 5 out of 5

    Natalie

    Kamikaze Girls is a manga broken into three separate sections: the first part ties in with the movie and novel, the second is a sequel, and the third is a bonus story featuring different characters. The first and second sections are both interesting - they feature a compelling plot, but the story is so rushed that the climax, in which Momoko and Ichiko realize how much they've helped each other, isn't very powerful and the "reward" of their friendship doesn't seem deserved. The story moves too q Kamikaze Girls is a manga broken into three separate sections: the first part ties in with the movie and novel, the second is a sequel, and the third is a bonus story featuring different characters. The first and second sections are both interesting - they feature a compelling plot, but the story is so rushed that the climax, in which Momoko and Ichiko realize how much they've helped each other, isn't very powerful and the "reward" of their friendship doesn't seem deserved. The story moves too quickly; I've never read the novel or seen the movie, so I'm not sure if those have the same pitfalls as the manga. Third section with the separate story left me with mixed feelings. I liked the theme of a girl wanting to be treated like an adult; after all, how many times did we feel like this growing up when we wanted our parents to trust us? However, the story offers dating an older man as the solution, and I'm not totally sure this relationship - which might be statutory rape, depending on their undisclosed ages - makes much sense.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Alexa

    So, the book this is based on is really good. I remember that when this first came out in the US, out of the book, the manga, and the movie, I likedthe book the best, then the manga, then the movie. Rereading the manga, though, I didn't really like it. It's not a very good adaptation. The art isn't very compelling, in terms of being a graphic novel. The actual drawing style is passable, but the way it's adapted from the novel isn't very compelling. The sample of the novel in the back makes me re So, the book this is based on is really good. I remember that when this first came out in the US, out of the book, the manga, and the movie, I likedthe book the best, then the manga, then the movie. Rereading the manga, though, I didn't really like it. It's not a very good adaptation. The art isn't very compelling, in terms of being a graphic novel. The actual drawing style is passable, but the way it's adapted from the novel isn't very compelling. The sample of the novel in the back makes me really want to dig up my hardcover copy of it. The second story in the manga is sort of a sequel, a romance between a character who was unlucky in love, and the twin of their original interest. I liked it, because I liked this new character and how they interacted with the other character. That part of the story isn't in any of the other versions, but it isn't enough to boost the manga up all that much. The story itself is good, but I recommend the novel a whole lot more than this.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Gräfin von Schlotterstein

    The manga still had it's funny parts, which I love so much, but it rushed way too fast through the whole story. It's still a nice one and if you know the original story than you can find the similarities. I would recommend everyone to check out the novel. You'll learn so much more about the characters and it'll give you a whole different feeling. You should also check out the movie. It gives it's own nice touch to the whole story. If you're already a fan of Kamikaze Girls and you want to add this The manga still had it's funny parts, which I love so much, but it rushed way too fast through the whole story. It's still a nice one and if you know the original story than you can find the similarities. I would recommend everyone to check out the novel. You'll learn so much more about the characters and it'll give you a whole different feeling. You should also check out the movie. It gives it's own nice touch to the whole story. If you're already a fan of Kamikaze Girls and you want to add this to your collection, please do so. But don't think the manga will give you the same feeling as the book or movie. It's just a nice little ad on to the whole Kamikaze Girls universe.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Miss Susan

    i just watched the movie and decided to reread the manga while i was at it. i have to say, it kind of suffers in comparison. the manga moves too fast to really earn the friendship payoff the movie does, though i will give it props for connecting the storylines a little better (the whole gang challenge comes out of nowhere in the movie). also i am iffy on the side story with the high school girl and host guy. :/ 2.5 stars

  17. 4 out of 5

    Stacy

    Significantly more shallow than the novel, although the restructured plot works a bit better in some ways. Over half the book is filled with three other short stories: one a romantic tale focused on Ichigo, and two other short romances with a princess "theme" that mostly comes through in the title. Mostly of interest to Novala Takemoto completists. Significantly more shallow than the novel, although the restructured plot works a bit better in some ways. Over half the book is filled with three other short stories: one a romantic tale focused on Ichigo, and two other short romances with a princess "theme" that mostly comes through in the title. Mostly of interest to Novala Takemoto completists.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Ysabet

    [I read both the original novel and the manga adaptation in August 2010. Not sure why they're consolidated as one book in Goodreads' system. I'd probably rate both as 3/5, since I enjoyed both, but IMO the novel is better.] [I read both the original novel and the manga adaptation in August 2010. Not sure why they're consolidated as one book in Goodreads' system. I'd probably rate both as 3/5, since I enjoyed both, but IMO the novel is better.]

  19. 5 out of 5

    Carrie

    I liked the premise of this manga but...meh. Maybe the movie is better?b

  20. 5 out of 5

    emily_oriley

    This doesn't usually happen but the movie was WAY better than the book or the manga. This doesn't usually happen but the movie was WAY better than the book or the manga.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Charlene

    I'm quite surprised that this manga isn't as well known as most are out there - expect a full review soon! I'm quite surprised that this manga isn't as well known as most are out there - expect a full review soon!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Xiauyu

    Pretty art~ nice short stories

  23. 5 out of 5

    Deirdre

    The art as always was really good. I loved the story line and the characters. ♡♡♡ MANGA IS THE BEST ☆☆☆☆☆

  24. 4 out of 5

    Karaoke OK

    [Series Length: 1 volume / Read: volumes 1] (Would you like me to post a short review of this series? Feel free to place a request in my GoodReads InBox. Thanks!)

  25. 5 out of 5

    RogueHireling

    Cute, but I think it skipped over quite a few of the details. Makes me want to read the book that this manga is based on.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

  27. 4 out of 5

    Ivy

  28. 5 out of 5

    Tatiana

  29. 5 out of 5

    Tessie

  30. 5 out of 5

    Freakkyerr

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