Nephilim Volume 1 by by Anna Hanamaki (amazon)
This series was an occasionally pretty yet incredibly incoherent mess. Guy is a talented assassin who shops for his clothing at Fabio’s Romance Cover Puffy Shirt Store. I don’t know why an assassin would run around in a shirt unbuttoned to his navel all the time, it doesn’t seem very sneaky. Perhaps Guy contracted some sort of fever and needs to feel the breeze on his chest in order to keep cool.
Guy meets Abel who is a Nephilim, a member of a secretive tribe of gender-bending people who are male by day and female by night. Their strange tribal customs extend to their attire, as they seem to roam around in the jungle barefoot while wearing a skimpy bathrobe. When Guy sees Abel in her female form, she vows to kill him.
Abel embarks on one of the least effective campaigns for revenge I’ve encountered in manga. She trails after Guy as he pursues his mission to rescue the kidnapped mistress of a king. Abel will occasionally brandish a knife and try to slice Guy up, but he easily disarms her. When she isn’t making feeble threats on his life, she’s defending him from danger because she wants to be the one to kill him. Do they end up falling in love despite their adversarial relationship? Are there horrible complications in the form of Abel’s Nephilimese curse? Yes!
After thoroughly enjoying another Aurora release, Walkin’ Butterfly, this book was a disappointment. While it wasn’t absolutely horrible, the predictable plot combined with characters I don’t really want to read about ensures I won’t be buying further volumes of this series. The author note stated that Hanamaki invented the characters for this story in middle school, and it does read like a book written by an adolescent who was mainlining romance novels. Perhaps the story and characters should have been put back in the oven to bake another 10 years.