The second volume of Shinobu Ohtaka's comic "Sumomomo Momomo" is an improvement on the first one, with new, interesting characters and a more coherent story. As in the first volume, some part of the manga's illustrations looks a bit rough and sketchy, but all in all, this installment offers an enjoyable read.
The new volume introduces a beautiful girl ninja Iroha Miyamoto, who plots to kill a high school boy Koushi Inuzuka for the resurrection of her Miyamoto Clan. However, because of a series of silly coincidences and stupid blunders, Iroha starts thinking about marrying her target herself. Her plans of wooing the guy (in a very goofy way) lead to another ridiculous situation involving jealous Hanzo, Iroha's subordinate who has a crush on her, and Momoko, "the strongest bride on earth."
Like most serialized Japanese comics, the story is fairly episodic, but compared with the first volume the new one has a better and faster pace without flashbacks. The hero Koushi is still a rather boring character, but thankfully the comic is more about the interesting and charming female characters such as Momoko, Iroha and Sanae Nakajima a shy bespectacled girl who has a big secret.
This series is the first major work from Shinobu Ohtaka, and as is the case with most debuting authors, Ohtaka is improving the narrative techniques after the faltering start. The comic's initial premise about Momoko's plans to have a baby still remains, but here the comic is more about the lively interactions between the likable and amusing characters, especially Iroha and Sanae.
Those who didn't like the first volume may want to try this one. This is getting better.