I’m back to leave some comments on volumes 5 – 7, if you’re curious as to what I said about the first 4 volumes I have a post called Reading Progress: Update #1 (which you are encouraged to read since this one may be a bit on the negative side…). I’m also going to warn for SPOILERS, just to be on the safe side!
I don’t usually care if people ‘spoil’ things for me which is why I have a problem discerning what I shouldn’t say. I’m going to try and not reveal anything too major but I can’t promise anything, haha
So volume 5 starts off focusing on Ryo (remembers my comment on how she needs development). In this volume the school is preparing for a cultural festival and one of the main events is the Ideal Woman Contest, which has all the grades participate. Somehow Ryo is voted in to represent the second year students (because everyone thinks she’s so cute and obviously perfect).
In this competition the 3 participating female students are allowed a male assistant so that there’s not an unfair advantage among the groups (guys obviously can’t be doing womanly tasks) and thus the adventure begins!
This first half of the book was interesting for one reason only – a potential love rival Miyabi Oharida. But even this addition falls short because nothing really changed. Oharida confesses her love for Asuka and is driven to beat and humiliate Ryo (she knows Ryo is clumsy and manly). And since Oharida had already won this competition for 2 years in a row she was rather confident. Of course, in the end that’s all we really see from her.
Again, we see Ryo being a training junkie who tries her best at everything she does (tea ceremony, flower arrangements, cooking, floor wiping race, kimono dressing, and a kimono wearing beauty face-off). Nothing new or noteworthy that I can think of.
If I had to highlight something about this volume it would have to be
- The background story on Juta’s mangaka career (and his dilemma in trying to keep his identity a secret). Like I mentioned before, I love this guy because he’s the one moving the plot along (is there still a plot, I’m kind of lost) and it was interesting to know more about him. I can’t wait to see what he does about his identity!
- The appearance of Asuka’s possibly father turned other mother? Yes! So at the end of the manga Asuka and Tonomine end up wrapped up in some funny business (the Beauty Samurai) and this person who looks a lot like Asuka shows up trying to uncover the secret identities of the 2 Beauty Samurai. Yeah, need to know who that is!!
End rating: About a 3 ☆ It was alright. Mostly felt like filler
but there were a few interesting developments.
I have mixed feelings about this volume. Part of me likes it because there are some interesting plot points that arise but at the same time I don’t like it because the majority focuses on side stories that I’m not really feeling.
If I had to chop this volume into pieces the first would be The Beauty Samurais, which is only a 1/4 of the book.
I do have to say though, that it’s one of the more interesting parts because Asuka’s family is involved. While we do learn that Mysterious Person is not Asuka’s dad, we do learn that it’s his aunt (father’s younger sister). Also, I don’t think she was named…bummer.
But even better is the appearance of (this time for real) possibly Asuka’s dad. Unfortunately he’s blurred out and looks like he’s bald. He’s now identified as the guy in Purple. I really can’t wait to see more of this! Especially curious about how Asuka will react. I know Tonomine asks Asuka if he hates his dad and Asuka is unable to really answer…not to mention that Purple Guy seems to be watching from the shadows, protecting Asuka. There’s a part of me that wonders if his dad actually went and got a sex change.
Also, you’d think I’d be fangirling over the yaoi-ness that this book contained (Yamato asking Asuka out and calling him his girlfriend, Asuka not complaining) but all I could do was hide behind my hands. The things Yamato does are so embarrassing! Haha
The third is Flower Man and Kuriko-chan. This one is actually a branch of the previous part except that it focuses on Juta’s sister and how she likes Flower Man (that beautiful otomen on the cover of volume 5!). We learn that Kuriko-chan doesn’t like flowers because she was stung by a bee one time and Kitora can’t have that because everyone should appreciate flowers. What was the point of this I’m not sure?
I imagine it might be something that’ll be developed further on and Kuriko may become part of the main pairings? I mean, she was kind of a major player in the Juta + Secret Identity part in volume 5 and Kitori seemed to kind of like her? I mean, he did try super hard for her to like flowers (personally I don’t really like her, she’s kind of just there).
And last but not least (or maybe yes least) Asuka’s Twin Hanamasa. This is probably the shortest of them all and branches off from the date Asuka had with Yamato. One day while contemplating musical tastes Asuka bumps into someone who has a similar taste in music. They talk and it turns out that this guy Hanamasa is actually an otomen too (he’s the vocalist to this rock band but secretly likes cute music). Out of the 4 parts, this one seemed like the least important to the plot. Why was this guy introduced? Will he be making an appearance again? Is there anything significant about his resemblance to Asuka or is it just coincidence?
End rating: 2 ☆ I can’t really place a lot of what’s happening in
this book with the larger plot. Interesting plot points
not developed (a.k.a. Asuka’s family).
Volume 7 Thoughts
Another volume made up of parts! Except that I like this one better because it wraps up Asuka’s Twin Hanamasa, continues Juta + Secret Identity, and returns to Asuka and Ryo’s romance! Is this the plot I see? I think so.
Major plus points for this volume:
- We encounter Purple Guy again! When Asuka is in trouble again he comes to the rescue, which I thought was totally sweet. I’m really excited to see what’s going on with this character (and if it turns out to not be his dad then I don’t know what I’m going to do with myself, haha)
- We get some insight on Ryo’s feelings for Asuka. For some reason I just assumed Ryo liked Asuka but this book really made me doubt some things. Asuka brings up some points like how Ryo never told him she loves him and how she always wants to bring everyone to their dates…how they seem more like friends than an actual couple…not to mention that their relationship has been at a standstill for about 2 volumes
- That ending. Wow, I have no idea what’s going to happen there! Hint: the rumors. If it does turn out to be true I’m wondering why Ryo doesn’t tell Asuka? And I’m also guessing this is why she always wants to hang out with the whole group.
When Juta jumps Asuka I was fangirling like crazy! In fact, I’ve been fangirling since I saw Juta crossdress. He is so freakin’ adorable I want him!…of course, going off this, the whole ghost thing felt unimportant and could have been omitted. I mean, Ryo and Asuka don’t even spend much time together so it didn’t even help in that sense. Or I guess it was used to implant doubt into Asuka because it’s after this that he starts wondering about Ryo’s feelings for him.
Something else that happens in this volume that I wish I could put into the plus points category but can’t is Juta’s ‘reunion’ with his first love. I thought it was interesting how we got that background story of how he became interested in shojo manga in volume 5 but the way it was resolved felt too iffy for me. I can’t understand why he was so anguished over the matter.
I mean, I’m glad it got resolved because I love him and want him to be happy but at the same time I wonder, will this help him confess that he’s Jewel Sachihana? If not, is it kind of just something that was randomly bothering him? Ah, I don’t know…haha
End rating: 2.5 ☆ The pace started picking up here and
I’m glad there’s new issues coming up. Hopefully that thing with
Ryo will help the plot progress.
Wow, this turned out longer than what I expected…haha. And I’m also surprised I had so much to say about volume 6, which is my least favorite so far. I’ll be ordering the next few volumes from the library and continuing（˶′◡‵˶）
What do you guys think? Am I being too harsh? I mean, I don’t dislike the series but I also think it’s starting to drag. Any favorite events from these 3 volumes? Will it get better?
Random: I just saw a spoiler that made my yaoi heart go doki-doki o(*≧□≦)o