- Paperback: 208 pages
- Publisher: Tokyopop (February 7, 2017)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 159816130X
- ISBN-13: 978-1598161304
- Product Dimensions: 4.9 x 0.8 x 7.4 inches
- Shipping Weight: 7 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 16 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #923,315 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Dramacon, Volume 2 (v. 2) Paperback – October 10, 2006
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The book I recieved was lightly rough handled but I didn't mind that. After reading through this book though, I saw there was one page with a large orange stain on it... That was a bit dissapointing....
Will these star-crossed not-quite-lovers ever connect? Will Chriss and Bethany's comic ever get the respect it deserves? Will Bethany be able to reconcile her love of art with her mother's staunch disapproval? Find the answers to those questions and more in Dramacon Vol. 2!
It's hard to explain how much I love this series without sounding ridiculous. But I do. Dramacon is one of those things that just makes you feel good. It's charming and sweet and exhuberant in a way that is zany and, really, perfect.
It was also interesting to read about Chriss and Bethany's difficulties in the face of manga snobs who claim that "real" manga has to be written by someone who is Japanese. Even after researching graphic novels and comics for a school paper, I didn't know that. Snobbery aside, Dramacon is about as real manga as you can get and it is awesome.
That's all I'm going to say about this book as a manga because I think my review of Volume 1 covered my opinion of calling manga junk food (hint: it's ridiculous). I will grant that this book might be a bit of escapism. But who doesn't need that now and then?
What I liked especially in this story is that Chriss and Beth are both willing to walk away from their dreams to do what seems best in the long run. (It was heart-wrenching seeing Chriss watching Matt and his girlfriend. It was even more heart-wrenching seeing her walk away from him--again!) These are not, perhaps, the best choices or the easiest ones. But they are very real and I liked finding that bit of reality in a comic. That said, this volume obvious totally leaves readers hanging desperate to see if everything works out for the best in the final volume of the series.
This volume takes place a year after the first one. The setting is once again the Yatta Anime Convention, where manga writer Christie had a series of adventures and mishaps a year before, culminating in a breakup and the beginnings of a new crush on mysterious cosplayer Matt.
Over the year that has passed, Christie hasn't kept in touch with Matt, but she hasn't forgotten him either. She is dismayed to discover that Matt has arrived at the convention with a new girlfriend.
This volume also introduces Bethany, the new artist for Christie's manga. Bethany is a talented artist struggling with pressure from home to be a top student. Her mother does not approve of her interest in drawing comics, and she herself is unsure of how much she is really ready to committ to being an artist.
As with the first volume, Chmakova featured a rich supporting cast with some compelling characters. Particularly interesting is Lida, an older established Manga artist who becomes a sort of mentor figure for Christie, even as she still deals with some of her own doubts.
Matt remains the stereotypic strong silent type, but the little glimpses behind the mask that we do get are telling ones, and I also found that romantic rival Emily (Matt's girlfriend) has a good deal of depth beyond her role as an antagonist.
The convention itself is described in loving detail, and Chmakova does a great job of conveying the kind of friendships and crises that seem to go hand in hand with such a setting.
The artwork is gorgeous. My only gripe is that I find Chmakova goes to the chibis a bit too often for my tastes, but that is just personal preference. The characters look great and the emotions come across beautifully.
The story ends with the end of the convention, with some issues resolved and many left hanging, and the reader is left to wonder what will happen when Christie, Bethany, Matt, Emily, and the others are reunited at the next convention in another year.
I'm probably not the traditional target audience for shoujo, but the convention setting hooked me from the start and the very strong characters kept me interested. Highly recommended for anyone who's been involved in manga or anime fandom.