Food Wars! Graphic Novel Volume 24 cover image
Rated “T+” for “Older Teen”
Fifteen year-old Soma Yukihira grows up cooking in the Yukihira Family Restaurant, which is owned by his family. He wants to be a better chef than his father, Joshiro Yukihira, so he hones his skills day in and day out. Then, his father suddenly decides to enroll him in a classy culinary school, Totsuki Saryo Culinary Institute, a place that prides itself on a 10 percent graduation rate. If Soma Yukihira really does not want to attend Totsuki, how can he succeed?
As Food Wars!: Shokugeki No Soma, Vol. 24 (Chapters 200 to 208; entitled “Training Begins!”) opens, Soma and fellow first years: Megumi Tadokoro, Erina Nakiri, and Takumi Aldini, begin training with Joshiro and Gin Dojima, Joshiro's former classmate at Totsuki from back-in-the-day. The are training for a rare event, the Régiment de Cuisine Shokugeki, a team shokugeki (cooking challenge).
If Soma and his allies win, they can take over Totsuki's “Council of Ten” and restore their expelled classmates as students at the school. If they lose, Soma and the rest of the students known as “resisters” will all be expelled. Joshiro will also become a slave to the cause of Azami Nakiri, the cruel new headmaster of Totsuki (and Erina's father).
Soma and friends have a month to prepare, but their first training slash shokugeki takes a turn for the unusual at the hands of their teachers, Joshiro and Gin.
[The volume includes bonus stories.]
THE LOWDOWN: The Food Wars! Manga is a shonen manga (comics for teen boys) set in the world of Japanese cuisine, and this world is very competitive. This series is at its best when it depicts cooking competitions.
Food Wars!: Shokugeki No Soma Graphic Novel Volume 24 starts and ends with a cooking challenge. In between, series creators, writer Yuto Tsukada and artist Shun Saeki, offer back story, flashbacks, and origin tales that flesh out the relevant characters' motivations, struggles and conflicts.
Adrienne Beck continues to offer a nuanced translation that brings depth to these characters and makes this a truly engaging read even when the story isn't offering the heat of kitchen battles. Letterers James Gaubatz and Mara Coman offer a variety of fonts that convey the variety in action, mood, and pace that is Food Wars! Eat up, dear readers!
I READS YOU RECOMMENDS: Readers hungry for good manga will want the “Shonen Jump Advanced” title, Food Wars!: Shokugeki No Soma.
9 out of 10