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StarCraft Ghost Academy: Volume 1    by Keith R. A. Decandido & Fernando Heinz Furukawa order for
StarCraft Ghost Academy
by Keith R. A. Decandido
Order:  USA  Can
TOKYOPOP, 2009 (2009)
* *   Reviewed by Ricki Marking-Camuto

The manga StarCraft Ghost Academy by Keith R. A. DeCandido and Fernando Heinz Furukama takes place during a missing period in the novel StarCraft: Ghost: Nova by DeCandido. However, it works very well as a standalone series.

Young adults with high psi abilities are sent by the Dominion to Ghost Academy to become special operatives known as Ghosts. In the past, Ghosts have worked with the military but still acted alone. In order to make them better team players, Ghosts now go through the Academy in teams of five, learning how to work together. One of these teams is Team Blue, which consists of Toth, their leader; Kath, a bossy but nice girl; Lio, a drugged out outsider; and Nova, a headstrong yet high-performing loner. Their empty third slot is soon filled by Aal, the Finance Minister's son, who is actually a half psi-point too short to be a Ghost. As Nova starts to learn how to work with a team, other members of Team Blue begin to pull the group apart, but they must work together if they are going to become Ghosts.

While Starcraft Ghost Academy is a true sci-fi manga, it is more about learning to work together than the interplanetary goings on of the Dominion. Nova learns a lot about herself throughout this first volume and we, as readers, learn a lot about her teammates. Both DeCandido's dialogue and Heinz Furukawa's artwork help lead the reader to discoveries about the characters. As this is the first in a trilogy, I imagine that following volumes will show how her team becomes stronger as they face more dangerous challenges than those presented in Ghost Academy simulations.

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