Manga Spice Cafe is your monthly manga maid cafe in a box! Each box contains 3 newly released manga, as well as 3-5 Asian snacks with a drink item. Every box will feature a maid character on the info sheet that highlights the manga and the artists who created them.
This box was sent to us for review purposes. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)
About Manga Spice Cafe
The Subscription Box: Manga Spice Cafe
The Cost: $36/month US + shipping, $39.95/month international + shipping
The Products: 3 brand new manga, 3-5 Asian snacks and a drink
Ships to: US for $3.95 and internationally for $17.25. International shipments include instant drinks, such as powdered beverages and teas.
Manga Spice Cafe November 2018 Review
Each box features a maid from Manga Spice Cafe. Meet Miho-chan and Tomoko-chan:
We’ve teamed up to bring you a special superpowered box this month, complete with manga, snacks, and a drink. We even included a little Dragon Ball gift for you! Enjoy!
The info sheet opens up to include information about all the items in the box. English information and ingredients are provided for Asian food items on the back page. It also provides details on unique artwork styles of the authors.
To the products!
Majiba Kayo is a chain-smoking, class-skipping, hell-raising juvenile delinquent and pretty much the last person on earth you'd expect to be a magical girl. But after a run-in with magical creature Myu, everything changes. Now, when Kayo transforms, neither evildoer nor innocent bystander are safe!
The humor is great. The art is superb and quite expressive. The overly detailed fight scene background is a bit cluttered (shown in the peek above) but does not distract the reader. It is quite the ridiculous story, but I still fell in love with the sassy, short-tempered violent Kayo who still cares for her friends. It is not the most traditional or most refreshing manga, but I enjoyed reading it for its entertainment value.
At Granbell Kingdom, an abandoned amusement park, Shiki has lived his entire life among machines. But one day, Rebecca and her cat companion Happy appear at the park's front gates. Little do the newcomers know that this is the first human contact Granbell has had in a hundred years! As Shiki stumbles his way into making new friends, his former neighbors stir at an opportunity for a robo-rebellion... And when his old homeland becomes too dangerous, Shiki must join Rebecca and Happy on their spaceship and escape into the boundless cosmos.
Reading this threw me back to remembering watching the Fairy Tail anime series a while back, and I love that the new series, Edenszero, is for a more mature audience (the plotline has developed further) -- this makes sense since a lot of Fairy Tail fans have grown up. I think Mashima has done a great job with this series; the sci-fi is relatively simple but has many touching moments. The artwork is distinct to Mashima, very clean and crisp, and the storytelling is that of a very experienced writer. And we all love cute cats, don't we?
A Dragon Ball's fan greatest dream is getting to live in the Dragon Ball universe and fight alongside Goku and his friends! One particular fan thinks he's living the dream when he suddenly dies and is reborn in the Dragon Ball world, but he's in for a rude awakening when he realizes he's been reincarnated as everyone's favorite punching bag Yamacha!
Dragon Ball That Time I got Reincarnated as Yamcha! – Retail Value $9.99 (found here for $5.64)
To be honest, I'm not much of a fan of Dragon Ball (I don't think I ever was) so I had to do a little research on the characters of the original series... The storyline is quite simple, someone gets reincarnated as Yamcha, uses his knowledge as a fan of Dragon Ball, to change Yamcha's fate. And Yamcha, is more or less a joke to most of the fandom (so it's his spotlight now!) The art style is reminiscent of early Dragon Ball Z chapters (and was quite a breather after Machimaho). It's a charming and quick read, absolutely a day-brightener.
Meiji Lucky Chocolate Covered Biscuit – Retail Value $0.89
These biscuit sticks are a bit thicker than their well-known Pocky cousins and are coated in a thicker layer of milk chocolate. The chocolate is a bit sweet, but the pretzel-like biscuit covers it enough. Besides the biscuit’s dryness, it’s a decent snack!
Orion My Gummy Grape Flavor – Retail Value $1.50
These are an iconic Korean fruit gummy, available in various flavors like peach, apple, grape, etc. made of fruit juice. The cute grape shapes smell divine and have an artificial grape flavor common in many Asian snacks (but still really tasty 😉). I tend to like harder gummies, for the fun chewing part, and these were harder than your average gummy (a little less than Haribo gummy bear?).
Dragon Ball Super Illust Gum – Retail Value $1.38
Ooh, a Dragon Ball exclusive poster? Though I didn’t get a rare or limited-edition version, the poster was of good quality and showed I believe Super Saiyan Rose. The tiny packet of gum came in flavors like grape, apple, and orange. They were super soft and fruity but, as most poster-gum or game-gums, did not last long.
Ramune Blueberry Flavor Soda – Retail Value $1.95
If you’ve subscribed to a Japanese subscription box before, you’d probably recognize the iconic ramune, or soda, flavor.
Ramune is known for its interesting package. Using the cap given, you push the small opening of the glass bead until it drops into the hollow bulge in the bottle, causing the drink to fizz!
The vibrant blue color, of a blueberry flavored soda, kind of turned me off… the artificial blueberry flavor did not appeal to me too much, as it tasted like cotton-candy Dumdums. Though it was fun to experience such an iconic drink, I wasn’t too happy of the flavor ☹
Lotte Kokkal Corn Spicy & Sweet Flavor – Buy a 147g bag for $1.80
Ooh! I remember these in my childhood, especially sticking the little corn horns onto my fingers! The original flavor is a mix of salty and sweet corn, and this spicy & sweet flavor reminded me of tteokbokki, a spicy rice cake snack in Korea. There was a perfect balance of spiciness and sweetness that I loved to eat!
Spicy Sweet Shrimp Flavor Ramen
Hmm… I didn’t like this ramen at all. Maybe I cooked it wrong or something, but it was basically chewy noodles dipped in vinegar sauce!! This ramen didn’t come with water measurements, or in a cup, so I cooked it in a pan (as you should with non-cup noodles). I do think I did everything right but wow! It was really unpleasant ☹
Verdict: I was happy with the inclusion of delicious Korean snacks, such as the corn horns and gummies, but was a little sad with the drink item and ramen. The Edens Zero series was a joy to read—a great memory of the Fairy Tail manga and anime series!
This box contained three books and six food items for $40 with shipping and I estimated a retail value of about $40, not including the ramen or corn snack. The snacks are fairly inexpensive, but the price is reasonably higher because of shipping. I think the box value is quite fair!
To Wrap Up:
Value Breakdown: This box costs $36 + $3.95 shipping, which means that each of the 9 items in the box has an average cost of $4.44.
Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!
What do you think of November's Manga Spice Cafe? What was your favorite manga?