Akira Minazuki – June – 2011 – 1 volume
Hm… hm. The art, which looks really nice on the cover, was a deal-breaker for me in this volume. The faces are drawn very strangely, with an unusual way of including the shadows on the face that bothered me. It’s also a little rougher than I’d like. Usually I find the rough styles appealing, but not this time. The flow was a little off, too, though I’m not sure I can articulate why. The page composition and panel layouts are good… maybe it’s just the way the figures direct the eye around the page that I’m having trouble with.
Anyway, there are three sets of couples in this book. The first was my favorite, and was about a fast food restaurant manager and a corporate higher-up falling in love. The restaurant manager is a real go-getter type, and decides immediately that he wants to date the corporate manager when he first sees him. The corporate manager is less sure of this, but after two chapters, the hookup is official.
The second set of chapters covers… uh, some sort of ice spirit and a rural doctor that travels from town to town. I wasn’t sure what to make of the mild fantasy element in this. The ice spirit’s powers are not well-defined, aside from the fact he usually kills people to stay alive, but the love from the doctor has turned him into a regular human. I don’t know. The relationship here also wasn’t very convincing, and the doctor makes for a fairly emotionally remote lover. Actually, they both do. I couldn’t get into this set of stories at all.
The third couple is a sculptor and his teacher. This was only one chapter, and was a little cuter than the other two. Both sides of the couple were in unfamiliar territory and not sure how to proceed, and because they are sculpting each other, there’s lots of… uh, touching before the feelings come out. Not the dirty kind of touching, but all the same. More than anything, it drove me crazy trying to remember what other BL story I had read recently with sculptors in it. Any ideas?
Overall, this just wasn’t my flavor. I did like the first set of stories, but I just wasn’t feeling the other two. The art was also a bit of a turn-off, though I have a feeling I’d like it a lot if it was just a little tighter. I’d love to see a later work by the same artist.