Manga Review: Haikyu!! V 21 by Haruichi Furudate @shonenjump

Contains Spoilers

Oh-ho-ho! The fifth and final set of the Miyagi Prefecture qualifier round finals is still blazing to a close. Karasuno and Shiratorizawa both refuse to yield, and the grueling play is starting to take a toll. With Tsukishima injured and off the court, things are looking grim for our intrepid heroes. Will exhaustion get the best of them?

Yow. The entire volume is centered on the final set. It is never ending. After a widening gap between the teams, Karasuno, through sheer force of will, manages to catch up and tie the game. Then the teams trade a point back and forth for what seems like FOREVER! I would have died. Seriously, I would have dropped over from the exertion. The guys keep slagging the ball back and forth over the net, capitalizing on mistakes, making mistakes of their own.

We learn a little about Coach Washijo. He’s a short guy, just as short as Hinata, and that held him back from playing the game he loves. There’s a flair of jealousy, when he vows that his team won’t lose to a player like him. While Hinata isn’t the most technical player, he is one of the most dedicated, and he refuses to let his physical limitations get in the way of his goal to be the best player he can be. Washijo’s distain for Hinata hit me wrong, and instead of his past making him sympathetic, I thought that it made him seem shallow. Maybe it was hard for him to own up to his own defeat, that he let himself be sidelined instead of forcing his way onto the court.

Now that the Finals are wrapped up, I wonder where the story is going to take us. I hope that we have some team building, and some conflict with incoming 1st years. I will miss the 3rd years as they move on with their lives after high school and volleyball.

Grade: 4 stars

Review copy provided by publisher

About the book:

Shoyo Hinata is out to prove that in volleyball you don’t need to be tall to fly!
Ever since he saw the legendary player known as “the Little Giant” compete at the national volleyball finals, Shoyo Hinata has been aiming to be the best volleyball player ever! Who says you need to be tall to play volleyball when you can jump higher than anyone else?
The fifth set of the Miyagi Prefecture qualifier round finals continues. With Tsukishima out of the game, Karasuno’s defense is starting to fall apart. However, they’re determined to keep it together. With both teams physically and mentally exhausted, which one will keep it together the longest and move on to Nationals?