July 5, 2015
Yuyuko Takemiya / Zekkyo – Seven Seas Entertainment – 2012 – 7+ volumes
I am ridiculously fond of this series. I’ve put off reading it because only about 1 volume a year comes out. Sometimes less. We’re getting volume 7 in June, so I thought I’d catch up a little.
This was a bad place to jump in, because this is basically the summer trip story arc. And I’ve read a lot of these. But this one was a little different. Ryuji does get Minori alone at one point, and puts his foot in his mouth and almost confesses. But Minori turns his gaffe into a conversation about ghosts. She doesn’t believe in them, but she might if she sees it. Similarly, she doesn’t believe in love because she’s never fallen. The two use ghosts as a metaphor for talking about their feelings. It’s a cute scene, and Minori really seems to open up to Ryuji.
Ryuji and Taiga are planning to scare Minori so she seeks refuge in Ryuji’s arms. But rather than the usual rom-com plot where this may happen, or somehow the hero may trip into her cleavage and she gets mad, this has a better, more entertaining twist. Although… to be honest, someone still seeks refuge in Ryuji’s arms. It’s not romantic yet, though.
There’s also lots of nice humor sprinkled throughout. Kitamura is apparently an exhibitionist, which I would not have pegged him as. He reminds me a bit of Teratani from Katsura’s I”s, in that way. Also, his glasses. There aren’t really any Kitamura/Taiga scenes in this volume. But everyone is falling for Ryuji. Ami nearly confesses her feelings once or twice, and even Taiga looks jealous at the attention he shows to Minori.
The last chapter is an adorable one-shot where Taiga takes a day out with her female friends and gets her nails done, learns how to put on makeup, and other cute stuff.
I just find this to be charming, with somewhat fun characters and (usually) free of the usual shounen rom-com traps. And when it’s not, it side-steps them just a little, to be less raucous and ridiculous and a little more touching.
I wish light novels did better in English! I’d love to read these!