October 13, 2011
Takashi Kanzaki – 801 Media – 2008 – 1 volume
I bought this because of the recent 801 sale at the Right Stuf. What can I say? I wasn’t expecting too much from it, and… I got what I was looking for.
It’s a story about models. Hisashi enters the modeling world hoping to follow in the footsteps of Tomohito, a supermodel who winds up having an extremely aggressive and off-putting attitude. When Tomohito kisses Hisashi, Hisashi winds up punching Tomohito in the face and making problems with his schedule. Tomohito insists that Hisashi fill in while his face heals, Hisashi can’t get the fact that Tomohito is paying attention to him out of his head, and… well, you can see where this is going. Straight into Tomohito’s bedroom. There’s a second chapter about Tomohito cruelly teasing Hisashi, and how he has a little brother obsession.
There’s zero chemistry between the two, and I hated Tomohito, but somehow, the story was still fairly entertaining. I’m not sure how that works, but there you go. There’s not a whole lot of drama, it’s very relationship-focused, and I read it simply wanting a quick romance manga read, and it’s great for that.
But there are many, many other books out there that are better than this if all you want is a quick read. In fact, this volume left so little impression that I set it aside and was actually writing this review before I realized I hadn’t read the unrelated short stories that make up the second half of the volume.
Those short stories left even less of an impression than the main storyline, and included a too-condensed story about a pair of detectives solving a mystery and falling in love, another story about… some sort of messed-up familial incest that I really don’t want to think about, and a final story that involves rivals at school and non-con that of course leads to true love. So… yeah. The last two I was a little sorry I read, and the first of the short stories just wasn’t good.
Basically, give this a pass. The best part is the modeling story in the first half, and even that’s not very good.
But part of me does want to read the sequel to see if Kanzaki gets any better. I think it’s… His Arrogance? Apparently she has several other volumes in English, too. Maybe I just got a dud, but it’s also possible she’s just not for me. She has a rather masculine pseudonym, so part of me wonders if perhaps Kanzaki is really a man. Would that make this more interesting? I don’t think I’ve ever read BL written by a man. But judging by the dozens of books Kanzaki has penned in the BL genre and nothing else, I’m guessing she’s a woman.