Book Review: Case Closed Volume 28

August 11, 2012


Remember how I said that there was one series that I was going to pick up again? Right now, I am trying to play catch up so, I ordered three volumes within the total of four books. Out of the four books I ordered from Barnes & Noble, one arrived recently. Today, I will be reviewing that book, which is called Case Closed Volume 28 by Gosho Aoyama.

As I gave a series synopsis in an earlier post, I will not go over it again.

Continuing on from the pervious volume, Jimmy, Dr. Agasa, and the rest of the Junior Detective League are trying to find Mitch and Haibara, who have gone missing due to a shooting incident. After having been called in, the police find a corpse in the middle of the forest. Later, Richard receives an urgent call from a woman, who seeks an old photograph that has been given to an old friend, but Jimmy suspects that she is lying through her teeth. When they reach the residence of the person who had the photograph, Jimmy, Rachel, and Richard find that person dead. There are three suspects and it is up to Jimmy and the gain to solve mystery. Once that case was solved, Harley and Kazuha take Jimmy, Richard, and Rachel to an island where legend says that a person lived for over 800 years after consuming a mermaid. There are even rumors on that island that speak of the corpse of a mermaid. At first, neither Jimmy nor Harley was interested, until Harley revealed a letter written to Jimmy Kudo but addressed to Harley. However, instead of investigating the person they were after on this so-called mermaid island, Jimmy and the gang are wrapped up in a murder case that appears to have no suspects. Finally, Rachel and Serena go shopping at a department store, looking for a hand-knitted sweater, which bores both Richard and Jimmy. While walking, Richard finds a strange lady and approaches her, but she takes him down easily. Surprisingly, it was Sato acting as a decoy for a new case. After going over the details and finding a new clue, Rachel says on the phone that she found a dead body in the parking area. However, the true culprit is not the only one with something to hide.

I really enjoyed this volume. Instead of using Agasa or his tranquilizer wristwatch, Jimmy revealed the identity of the person that the police found. So far, Jimmy has been using his wristwatch and voice-changing bow tie in combination since the first case that he got it, which was the Smooth Sailing murder case, not the case that occurred in anime episode 6, as confirmed by MagicBox. With as much filler that the Detective Conan (Case Closed) manga has, the anime has a whole more, considering how much the Japanese ruined the early episodes and the number of anime-only cases. However, since this is one of the times where Jimmy feels like revealing his deduction himself, I would certainly say that he is not too lazy to get things done himself. I was quite surprised by the culprit in this one. I was lead to believe that the guy carrying spare bullets for his friend was the guilty party. On the other hand, I was put right the middle of the case, considering that volume 27, where the case starts, was not even delivered to me yet, so that is mainly the fault of only one volume being delivered and I read that one volume. I found it very funny that Richard believed whatever client in the next case said, but Jimmy caught on to every one of her lies at some point. However, considering that I do not know everything, I was not able to figure out all of the lies, but it certainly seemed strange that they found the man so easily. The culprit here seemed a bit surprising, though I had my suspicions on the client. On the other hand, it tends to happen in real life that the true culprit turns out to be one like it was here. However, the funniest part in that case was the shock on everyone's faces, including Jimmy's, when Harley reveals the true identity of their client. Seems like it was like the time Jimmy was tested by his own parents, which would explain how she knew Jimmy handled cases through Richard's office a lot of times. The most surprising though was on the mermaid island. This case was better than previous ones in the volume. The most interesting I found would baffle even those experienced with mystery and are familiar with forensics. One of the victims was supposedly identified as a shrine maiden by dental records. However, the part where it baffles people is a major spoiler to the case, so I am not going discuss what is so baffling. As for the final case present, I cannot really say that is interesting, but then again we do not get the full case, so it cannot be judged accurately. The best part of the volume though, aside from the events on the mermaid island, is that Haibara tells Mitch that where something is learned is not as important as how it is used. Of course, she tells him this when her sprain gets swollen, but I think it applies to other things. In fact, just because somebody cracks a system or network does not automatically make the person either a gray hat or black hat hacker, which are the people everyone seems to fear. Companies pay people to crack their own systems or network in order to find out how to make it more secure. Such people, according to PCWorld, are known as ethical hackers or white hat hackers. However, not all white hackers get permission or are hired to crack systems. Some people categorized as white hats do it on their own time and send companies the information to patch things up. That is because the cracking is not done maliciously, but without the consent of the companies, it is still illegal cracking. Another instance is in medicine. For example, the culprit in The Murder of Roger Ackroyd turned out to be a doctor and he used his knowledge to try to stump Hercule Poirot. Another instance come from real life. There are many labels for serial killers, but one is strongly associated with those that practice medicine. Such people are called Angels of Death, and like The Murder of Roger Ackroyd, they use their knowledge to kill people, but it is not just doctors that are called that, nurses fall into this category too. Each of those incidents are examples where one's knowledge is used to commit evil acts instead of the betterment of mankind. Being that Haibara is a former member of the Black Org though, as I stated in the review of Countdown to Heaven, I have no doubt that she knows this fact all to well. After all, there would not have been a reason for her to leave the organization, other than the fact that they killed her sister. Another interesting thing happens in the mermaid island case. When the case had been resolved, Rachel wants to see Harley's wound. He shows a hand with no scars, making them think that the scar is no more, but he hides his other hand, which has a bandage in his other pocket that Jimmy notices. Men are like that in real life. They may be scared or dealing with a serious injury, but when a woman shows concern, they try and play it off, like Harley did here. However, Rachel referred to it as a love mark and Kazuha was mad that it had healed so quickly. Honestly, men just do not think of things like that, when it comes to injuries. It is all part of the tough guy act. Men are not the only ones who downplay injuries though. Caring elder sisters and mothers would try to keep kids from focusing on their injuries or hide their fear because they know that the child's morale will lower, if they knew the truth. Girls will also act tough, depending on how feminine they are. Many cases certainly had a lot of surprises and even had things that are true in real life.

Although I enjoyed the volume, there were some issues. The biggest issue for me though was that there was really only one interesting case in this entire volume. It is not that the cases themselves were bad, but the fact that I did not feel very much excitement in the cases. It just kind of reminds me of how dull things got the first time around when cases did not involve either KID or Black Org and stopped following the series for a while. Of course, the other reason for dropping it in the first place was because I could not find the volumes, even the ones after volume 26, and avoid gaps in numbering anymore in my area. Hopefully, cases will get interesting again, especially with the case we got in volume 42. The fact that the majority of cases are not that interesting, it takes down the quality of the release, but not as much as the TOC problems in Negima! Volume 34.

Despite the fact that most of the cases were not interesting, I think that the mermaid island case makes up for it and makes this worth reading. I recommend this to fans of detective, mystery, and crime fiction, as well as fans of the Detective Conan (Case Closed) anime. As for everyone else, this seems like a decent series as an introduction to manga and detective, mystery, and crime fiction.

What are your thoughts on Case Closed Volume 28? Do you agree or disagree with my views? Do you have anything to add? Feel free to comment.

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