Bleach 10 by Tite Kubo: B-

From the back cover:
With the help of Kuukaku—a one-armed explosives expert and old friend of the mysterious talking cat Yoruichi—Ichigo and crew are one step closer to infiltrating the Soul Society and rescuing their friend Rukia before she is executed. For Kuukaku’s plan to work, Ichigo must control his enormous reservoir of spiritual energy—and there’s no telling how much collateral damage this will cause. Meanwhile, the Soul Society hasn’t been twiddling their collective thumbs, and quickly dispatches a delegation of captains to give the unwanted visitors the rudest of welcomings imaginable.

This volume started off slowly, with the first few chapters devoted to mastering the skill required for the plan to infiltrate the Soul Society. Since it was essentially the ability to create a bubble around one’s self, it wasn’t that riveting.

Once the group got inside the Soul Society, though, and got separated in the process, the pace began to pick back up and Ganju (one of the irritating characters from the last volume) even became tolerable. Ichigo’s fight with an—I think—relatively low-ranked Soul Reaper occupied the last few chapters, wherein reside the only “cool” moments of the volume. Also good was the introduction of lots of Soul Reaper captains and assistant captains, with many interesting character designs.

I do have a question, though. Aren’t the denizens of the Soul Society, like, already dead? ‘Cos, y’know… souls? So, what’s with Ganju’s angst about his brother being killed by Soul Reapers? I am confused on this point.

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