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Mega Manga Challenge (6): Fullmetal Alchemist, vol. 3 by Hiromu Arakawa

>>Friday, August 26, 2011

Title: Fullmetal Alchemist
Author: Hiromu Arakawa
Demographic: Shonen
Series: Fullmetal Alchemist, vol. 3
Format: Manga
Pages: 192
Genre: Steampunk, Science Fiction, Adventure
Publication Date: September 21, 2002
Publisher: Viz
Rating: A-

From Goodreads: Accompanied by their bodyguard, Alex Louis Armstrong, our heroes seek out their closest childhood friend, mechanic Winry Rockbell, to fix their battered "auto-mail" bodyparts. Soon their quest for the Philosopher's Stone takes them to the great central library, where the Stone's formula may be hidden...if the mysterious figure named Lust doesn't get there first! But the secret of the Philosopher's Stone may be even more frightening than the beings who guard it...

Why did I read this book? I just love this series!

Source: Bought

My Review
Note: May contain spoilers from previous volumes.

I think this was a great installment in the series for a couple reasons. First, it adds a lot of depth and really propels the main plot of the manga. Ed and Al have been searching for the philosopher's stone and have come up with nadda until they found a lead through Dr. Marcoh. Apparently he knows the secret to creating a philosopher's stone and has hidden it away, that is, until Ed and Al find it.

Through their discoveries we find out how to create the stone but also how much the governement has been involved in the making of stones in the past. Of course there's a question of morality to go along with this and this is explored in the last chapter when we meet some criminals who were chosen to be experimented on since they had forfeited their lives by committing crimes. What we find out is surprising and also makes us think about the worth of people or the soul (gosh I love this series).

The other great thing about this volume is we meet some great new characters. When volume 2 ended, Ed automail and Al's body was severely damaged and so they make the trip back to their hometown to get fixed up by Pinako ('Granny') and Winry Rockbell. Pinako is an old lady who took in Winry after her parents were killed in the Ishbal war and who also took in Ed and Al when their mother died. Winry is the same age as Ed, I think, and you can see they might have a little thing for each other. Some other great characters introduced are Sheska the bookworm and soldiers Havoc and Ross.

Rating: A-
Overall I think this is a great volume, especially for those who want more of the meat of the story. What and how are philosopher stones created? How is the government involed? What happened in Ed and Al's past and where is their home? I definitely recommend it to readers of the series and even to those who are not (but start at the beginning of course!). If you don't like this volume then you probably won't like much where the story is going.


  1. The third volume is where things start to REALLY get good. I love how the series make you think and goes way beyond face value. Great review-- hope you enjoy the next volume! :)

    I also posted about FMA-- a long fangirl gush-fest about the entire series which I've been saving for a while.

  2. Just a note, Pinako Rockbell is Winry Rockbell's paternal grandmother.

  3. @Brian: Thanks! I wasn't sure if they were actually biologically related!



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