Fushigi Yûgi 7 by Yuu Watase: A

From the back cover:
Now that the Seiryu Warriors have ruined their attempt to summon the god Suzaku, Miaka and her Celestial Warriors are forced to travel to a frozen northern country in hopes of gathering the sacred treasures that will grant them a second chance. Little do they know that they have made new enemies, ones who will stop at nothing to wreak their vengeance!

The plotting is excellent in this volume, with all events hanging together logically and moving forward with a sense of urgency and excitement as Miaka and friends head off on a new quest with the Seiryu Warriors in active competition. I suppose I’ve been burned too many times by manga that seems to amble around without a point, and it seems pretty clear that Watase knows where this story is going to go, so it impresses me.

Another thing I really liked was seeing more of Miaka’s interactions with others of the group. She is distressed about Tamahome, and sees Chichiri as a good person to talk to. Later, Nuriko is the one from whom she seeks comfort, and also plays a big role in the final chapter. We’re seeing the group bonding more as a whole and also learning more about their backgrounds.

Miaka also grows yet more determined to summon Suzaku. Though she doesn’t wish to fight Yui, Nakago’s tactics are just too cruel to be allowed to continue. I really like her when she is taking the job seriously, and therefore didn’t feel the urge to smack her once this time.

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