Manga Monday: Tesla Note Vol. 1

Series: Tesla Note
Author/Artist: Kota Sannomiya
Publisher: Kodansha Comics
Released: October 19, 2021
Received: NetGalley

There are certain subjects that will always tempt me into picking up a book. One of those subjects is Tesla. Naturally, that meant that I had to give Tesla Note Vol. 1 a chance, because obviously.

Botan Negoro has been training her whole life (literally) to be a government agent. She may only be a high schooler, but she is one of the most elite agents out there, which is good, given the situation at hand.

She’s been called in to collect a “Tesla Fragment.” These fragments have been scattered throughout the world (sound familiar) by Tesla himself, as he deemed one of his devices too dangerous for the world. Now it’s going to be Botan Negoro’s job to prevent them from falling into the wrong hands.

I went into Tesla Note Vol. 1 wanting to love it. And to be fair, there’s a lot to appreciate about this one. We’ve got Tesla’s brilliance, a strong female lead character, and tons of social commentary (which I always love to see).

Sadly, I didn’t end up enjoying Tesla Note Vol. 1 quite as much as I had hoped. I think the biggest problem for me, ironically, is the characters. Or, more accurately, the lack of character development. Though I didn’t like the way, the main characters kept sniping at each other either (it was not as charming as it could have been).

A lot of what happens here only works in manga, and I mean that in every way possible. It relies heavily on that charm, which is totally fine. It’s a bit out of this world and odd at times, and then at other times, it is working hard to make important points. It would be a jarring transition anywhere else, but here it works.

Thanks to Kodansha Comics and #NetGalley for making this book available for review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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