Manga Review: One Piece Volume Nine

One Piece follows a young man named Monkey D. Luffy, who has a dream of finding the fabled One Piece treasure on the Grand Line and become the king of the pirates. However, when he was a boy, he ate some of the devil fruit, which turned his body into rubber.

One Piece Volume Nine
Written by: Eiichiro Oda
Publisher: Shueisha
English Publisher: VIZ Media
Release Date: January 3, 2006

By the beginning of Volume Nine, Luffy has acquired several members for his crew, as well as a ship to travel in. At this point in the story, Nami the navigator has taken the ship and returned to her home in Cocoyashi Village. Luffy and the others have come in order to get Nami and the ship back.

Near the end of Volume Nine, there’s a flashback sequence that shows Nami’s life as a child and why she ended up joining “Saw-Tooth” Arlong and Arlong’s Pirates. Not only did this flashback provide character development for Nami, it was also a rather touching story. This portion of the Arlong Park arc has really helped to make Nami a very sympathetic character. I’m glad to see I was right that there was more to Nami’s story than there appeared on the surface back in Volume Eight.

Of the One Piece volumes that I’ve read so far, I would have to say that Volume Nine is the most serious volume at this point. Sure, there’s some of the humor readers have come to expect from One Piece, but overall, the tone of this volume is rather serious. I think this is due in large part to the serious events that take place in the flashback for Nami’s backstory. With the volume having such a strong focus on Nami’s backstory, it really is no wonder why the overall mood of the volume is more serious than normal. I have to admit that I almost cried when I saw what happened to Nami in her childhood.

I have to say that One Piece keeps getting better and better the further that I get into the series. I hope that One Piece continues to get better as I continue to read future volumes of the series. As of this writing, One Piece has already broken 60 volumes, so it may take me quite a while to find out the answer to this pondering.

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