Despite my vanity, and fear for my sanity, I've been reading even more of this stuff.
I wrote about the first few books I stumbled upon here - noting that they weren't all that different from 'normal' manga after all, so I guess I'll do the same with these new ones. Just know that this post will be delving even further into the 'shoujo' of shoujo... that makes no sense, but, you know: even girlier stuff than last time.
That I've read these at all is thanks to my sister getting hold of a pile of them. I wouldn't buy these myself, voluntarily, but since they were all so easily accessible already I might as well give them a glance... right?
Kare - First Love
This is the story of Karin, and Aoi, who meet in school, and get together, and break up, and argue, and yet they both love each other so they nourish their relationship and slowly it grows stronger and stronger - despite the many obstacles that get in their way, like school, and work, and evil parents.
It's a very typical love story, cheesy and prone to emotion, with the boyfriend always supportive and the girl always in need of supporting, often drawing the wrong conclusions, being too quick too judge and further complicating what could've been just a happy and simple relationship! All of this makes for the occasional groan, but also dare I admit pretty exciting reading, and it's always nice when things go well. When they finally overcome each crisis.
There's some comedy, and some awkward moments, and overall just a lot of relationship drama. I guess it was good though, because I read all the books... ten of them, minus three somewhere in the middle that weren't included in the aforementioned set of books. It's not a series I'll be adding to my collection, but yeah... it was alright. The drawing style's clean and refined too. Good read.
I only have one of these... fortunately. It's a sort-of love story involving one girl, and two guys, at a school, and a bunch of rivals and such, and a rich little girl with her own servant (who is five years old - the girl I mean - not sure about the servant).
It's all drawn in chibi style, super-cute and happy, and details the ups and downs of school and girl and boy stuff and honestly... I still haven't read all the way through this one. I'm having a hard time with the style. The art. The mood. The fact that there's a girl there that's just five years old but has breasts as big as any one of the other girls... of which ages aren't yet detailed. Middle school age? It seems kinda weird.
So far it's sort of fun. There are comical moments, but a lot of groans too.
I really don't think this'll go into my favorite. It's really not my style, love story or no (not that love stories are my style). Too dynamic? Too young? Too happy? Too much of some of that stuff.
Edit: I have read through it now, and it was alright, but I don't think I'll be reading more of this one...
Doors Of Chaos
Now here's one that's none of the above! Not too young, and definitely not too happy either. Similar to the vampire manga in the previous post this one quickly takes a twist for a darker; more somber story. It features more sensual female characters in the main roles, male protagonist/antagonists more in control, and tells the story of two sisters who were born to guard the keys to four other worlds. They have special powers too. I just read the first book of this series, but so far: tense. Hope to find more.
The artist has a very distinct style too. Very sharp eyes. Detailed features. Elaborate and grotesque monsters, clothes and sceneries. It's a fascinating art style, and a theme that almost borders on horror. Not the kind of Shoujo I expected! Actually I wonder if this is Shoujo at all...
I've read this one before. I've read bits, at least, of the first chapters in a manga magazine (Manga Mania) that a good buddy was subscribed too. I loved it back then, and I still do! It's more Shounen than Shoujo though - telling the story from a clumsy guy perspective instead of that of an overattentive girl, and you know what? It does work better! Even if the main character slaves away for those girls day after day, things never go his way, and he's constantly misunderstood and bullied... I relate? It's actually kind of sad. But at the same time everything that happens is just hilarious.
The story? Keitaro, kicked out by his parents as a hopeless Ronin (one who's trying and failing to get into university), goes to his aunt's hotel (she owns a hotel) to live there while he continues his studies, only to discover that it's been turned into an all girl's dorm! He discovers this whilst taking a bath in the hot spring... when a near-sighted girl walks in on him.
Hilarity ensues. As well as immense awkwardness and shame.
It turns out the girl is a girl from his childhood! A special one. The one and only. It takes the reader barely a chapter to figure this out, but it takes them the whole duration of the series, which is... I don't know how many books, but the anime was either 12 or 24 episodes. I think. The comedy's crazy, and it's emotional in a good way. Definitely recommended.
Hope to get my hands on the remaining manga some day too. It might be better than the anime.
Yaoi manga? This one was in that pile I was given but you know what? I think I'll pass. Feels like there's a certain line here I don't want to cross.
It did have a cool cover though. If I didn't know it was Yaoi...
So that's what I've been reading lately, though I do have a pile of Dragon Ball and Detective Conan I still haven't started with. Maybe
after summer next year. Until then... who knows, Christmas is coming up and this kind of manga seems to be the kind my sister occasionally stashes up on. Maybe there'll be more to come.