The cool thing about jmanga.com is that you’re given access to titles that normally would not see the light of day here in the States. Many of them are simply too much of a longshot to publish. The other nice, more recent thing is that the site has started publishing some old Tokyopop titles, some of which were unfinished here. Hopefully they finish them up!
Edo Nekoe Jubei Otogizoshi is a title that I picked up just because it heavily involves cats. The main characters are Jubei, who paints charms of rat-catching cats to sell, and his companion Nita, a two-tailed monster cat who knows human language. The manga follows their various adventures.
My personal favorite from this volume is the story of a boy and his cat Tamakichi. The boy is afraid his cat is going to become a nekomata (two-tailed cat demon), and leave him. It features a lot of really fun visuals of Tamakichi’s mice-catching antics, with a lot of giggle worthy facial expressions. Tamakichi and his owner are really endearing. It turns out that Tamakichi wasn’t becoming a nekomata, he was just trying to be better at catching mice.
I really like all the cute cat illustrations. The first page beyond the cover features little cats in kimonos. The art is nice and clear, the pacing is good, and the stories in this volume are all good. It’s interesting that Jubei has no problem painting cats and other animals, but is no good at painting people. Mostly I love all the cat illustrations. They bring a lot of expression and emotion to the cats, and the people as well.
This manga is definitely recommended if you’re a cat lover as well as a manga reader.