So it's kind of funny, but I have two versions of "Alice" rocking my world right now. I loved Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland. The characters were awesome and the world was beautiful. But I also can't get enough of Heart no Kuni no Alice (Alice in the Country of Hearts). It's darned addictive and I love how the world really does operate on such different rules.
I think I have a particular fondness for the White Rabbit, Peter, who's stalkerish and freaky and adorable. But really, all the characters have something enticing about them, and both Burton's and QuinRose's Alices are wonderful. From the young woman determined to gain her "muchness" to the girl who's sarcastically horrified at the implications of her subconscious desires, I really feel like I'm on a good kick here.
I also enjoy how "Wonderland" and "Through the Looking Glass" get combined. "Wonderland" may be the famous story, but I was always more partial to "Looking Glass" partly since I'm more of a chess player than a card player.
In other manga-related news, I've been reading more Goong and Bride of the Water God I love the art on both, but I feel like the relationships should draw me in a little more. Since the couple in Goong have an arranged marriage and this causes tons of tension between them, I'd really like to see more of them. The prince, Shin, seems to be taking trips out of the palace way too often and while Chae, the girl, develops some interesting relationships with the other palace people, these two are still at their most entertaining when they're together. I feel like that's only happening 30% of the time.
Bride of the Water God is as beautiful as ever, art-wise, but I feel like it needs to pick up the pace. Soah's been married to Habaek/Mui for a good 5-6 volumes now. She should probably know about her husband's alter ego. The other stuff they're doing brings plenty of drama, so I think they could let go of that premise point.
I read the first volume of Black Butler and was not impressed. Not only do we not see enough humanity from the title character (even if he isn't human), but the remainder of the staff, which is most of the other characters, seem pointless and annoying. If he' really such an awesome manservant, why would he keep around so many bumbling people when he can do all their jobs perfectly? My roommate has assured me that the story gets better as you go along, but even she admits that she mostly just reads it for the pretty art.
I promised myself that I would wait till I'd read Maximum Ride's first novel, "The Angel Experiment" before I so much as touched the second volume of the manga. Yeah. Totally broke that promise. More awesome art for the win. Group makeovers for the win. Max/Fang for the win.