Toradora 3

November 2, 2011

Yuyuko Takemiya / Zekkyo – Seven Seas Entertainment – 2011 – 4+ volumes

I love this series so much! Part of me knows it’s more-or-less a standard romantic comedy, but the other part loves the characters to death. I love seeing Ryuuji and Taiga interact. It’s all sorts of funny, and while it does use some of the oldest plot devices in the book, it more than makes up for it with humor and charm.

I did like this volume a little less than the last two, but only because the spotlight was taken from Taiga and Ryuuji, and instead the story focused on Ami, the character introduced last volume. She should fit right in. She’s a model, and she pretends to be a ditzy princess in order to get everyone to like her. But underneath, she’s quite mean and vindictive. Taiga, Ryuuji, and Kitamura are the only ones that know, and Minori doesn’t fall for her act either. Taiga and Minori go out of their way to embarrass Ami in front of the class, in order to get her to shed her nice personality. Ami hits on Ryuuji, thinking that it will break Taiga’s heart to steal her boyfriend. Taiga gets mad, all right, but the two of them still aren’t going out, so her anger is… a mystery to Ryuuji and those around him. Taiga insists she’s not mad because she’s losing Ryuuji, though. There’s also a plot point about Ami trying to get away from a stalker. Ryuuji and Taiga help her with that too, of course.

Even with the story’s focus on Ami, there’s still plenty of adorable Taiga and Ryuuji moments, though. Again, the biggest draw for me is the way that Ryuuji compulsively dotes on Taiga. He loves to clean, and he can’t help but feed her breakfast, lunch, and dinner every day. He also helps her out when she gets horribly depressed by one of Ami’s mean-spirited comments. He’s very good to her, though again, neither of them seem to be interested in a romantic relationship. They have crushes on each other’s friends. Still.

I love this series to pieces, and I look forward to every new volume. Unfortunately, it appears to come out at a rate of one volume a year in Japan. Volume five looks like it will come out soon in Japan, but after we get four and five in English… it’s going to be awhile before we see six. I suspect it will run through some more high school romance plot tropes before it starts to address the Ryuuji/Taiga situation, but I’ll be there every step of the way. Those characters are worth it, and I have a high tolerance and great love for really good romantic comedy manga.

This was a review copy provided by Seven Seas.

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