Bleach 21 by Tite Kubo: B

From the back cover:
Ichigo and his friends return to the world of the living, where life goes on as usual. But the arrival of a new transfer student raises disturbing questions, for outside school he carries a zanpaku-tou and wears the mask of a Hollow…

There. Now I am all caught up and the glut of Bleachiness will subside.

You know it’s a good sign when all the faces on the “story so far” page are the regular cast. After tying up some loose ends in the Soul Society, the focus returned in earnest to the core group as they headed back to the human world. It really did feel like coming home again after a long vacation. I particularly enjoyed seeing Tatsuki again.

The new plot built on the idea of Soul Reapers with Hollow power and vice versa that was broached in the Soul Society arc. So far, it was nothing special, though the fact that Uryuu doesn’t run out like the rest to fight the new threat does clue Ichigo in to the fact that the Quincy has lost his powers, so that’s something significant, at least.

And then there was Isshin. Connie said it best in her review: “It was too much. You just can’t DO that. You can’t decide that’s how it’s going to be after so long.” There can be no doubt that this reveal is audacious crackery. I don’t like it, and I seriously wonder if it contradicts what was established in earlier volumes, but I’m willing to keep reading and see where it goes.

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  1. I’m kind of looking forward to the new story, the hollows were really great enemies earlier on in the series, and I miss them. I know the next volume will have to address the Isshin thing right off, and he’ll probably stick around, but I am really excited about seeing the hollows again, at least.

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