Case Closed volume 20
First things first - I read most of my Case Closed volumes as e-books, which is fine. Manga's actually the perfect thing for an e-reader, imo, as a manga series takes a lot more space on a shelf to get a complete story than a novel would, and unlike other comics types, it's already sized for the paperback-size pages. And most of the e-book versions of this are set up like the hard copies, reading right to left. But this one is an exception for some reason, reading left to right even though the nav at the bottom is set up the other way (ie clicking the title page in the nav brings me to the end of the book). I found it confusing and worth a mention.
That being said, I have a question. How are the detective boys not scarred for life by this point? They keep seeing dead bodies. They keep getting attacked, kidnapped, etc. These kids should need therapy. >.>
In this volume we wrap up the soccer stadium shooter story, visit a get-together of magic fans in a remote home, miss a Yoko Okino concert because of murder and start a story about a remote mansion with a dark past.
The concert story is the strongest of those wrapped up in this book, to me. The resolution is pretty emotional and really sad, to me. (I usually like that better than the ones where some jerk gets murdered so people can stop them from continuing to be a horrible person. Though the best are the non-murder cases where things can be a little light-hearted.
Case Closed Vol. 21
Sato and Takagi's story starts!!
We get the conclusion of the actually pretty awesome haunted house mystery, a flashback to Shinichi solving a case on an airplane trip and the start of a great story where Heiji and Kazuha visit Ran and Mouri. This is actually probably my favorite volume to date, with only the plane story not being terribly compelling to me. But all that pales to me in the face of the beginning of detectives Sato and Takagi getting developed as characters.
I love these two. Absolutely love them. Takagi's been hanging around, and Sato showed up in the last book during the soccer case, but they haven't really done a lot beyond being cops. So the murder case they end up working (along with Conan and another detective, Shiratori) outshines all else for me. :D
But seriously. This is an excellent chapter. The haunted mansion story is really creepy, and more Kazuha and Heiji is always welcome.
Case Closed volume 22
In this volume, love and marriage make a deadly mixture, Conan and Ran and Mouri deal with murder on a train, and a vacation gets tense for Sonoko and Ran when they discover someone's been murdering girls with blonde hair - like Sonoko.
Another really strong volume. I really enjoyed all three cases, but I also enjoyed the guest stars in all three - Kazuha and Heiji in the first, a couple we've seen before in the second, and an interesting new character in the final one who... well I may not always like their attitude, but they provide an interesting contrast to our main cast. :)
Case Closed Volume 23
So, I asked in an earlier review how it's possible these kids don't have a complex or anything. And I wonder it again as the Detective Boys get more than they bargained for at a monster movie marathon. They get - you guessed it - murder! (seriously, this series definitely goes to the murder well way too often early on). Then we get a mystery on a boat, with a select group answering a quiz in the newspaper and getting a free cruise. But when people start dying one by one, it starts to feel a little like an Agatha Christie story.
And at the end, we get the basest start of another case involving Sato and Takagi. Which obviously I love. But I'll save talking about that for the next volume since it's barely in this book.
The movie theater case is pretty low-key, but after the excitement of the last volume and the second case of this book, I think something a little calmer was a good pacing decision. The boat case, by contrast, is more complex, with a lot of moving pieces and the added complication of Heiji being one of the people on the boat.