November 17, 2015
Saburouta – Seven Seas Entertainment – 2015 – 4+ volumes
Hmm… hm. I’m still not sure I like this one. I’m not really feeling either of the main characters. I like Yuzu more than Mei, but Mei is the sticking point for me. I know she’s supposed to be shy and introverted, but it’s not really obvious if she returns Yuzu’s feelings, if she’s just growing to like their life together, et cetera.
This volume introduces a new character, Himeko. Himeko is the vice president to Mei’s president role, and has been Mei’s friend since childhood. She also has a massive crush on Mei, and is incredibly jealous when she realizes Yuzu has a crush on her and has a home field advantage, so to speak.
Seriously, I hate step-sibling set-ups so much, I can’t even tell you. I hate them in BL (I’m looking at you, Open the Door to Your Heart), I hate them in shoujo (I never really forgave Marmalade Boy for that), I hate them however you want to serve them. That’s another impediment to this series, and it’s such a huge part of their relationship.
It’s what Yuzu uses against Himeko throughout this volume. Mei seems to know Himeko’s feelings, but coldly doesn’t return them, as per her character. One story excludes tag-along Himeko by setting up the two sisters to visit Yuzu’s father’s grave. Later, Yuzu helps Mei deal with her/their father. I was waiting for the Toradora-style neglectful dad, but I love that Mei was broken up because her father was living a life she didn’t approve of. And it wasn’t even anything bad. He just hated being a high-strung administrator and became a kind of traveling hippie. She doesn’t even hate that he’s an absentee father, and he obviously writes her letters and cares for her a great deal. She just hates that he’s not a powerful man anymore. I mean, I guess I can kinda see it, since she wanted to be just like him… but he seems like such a good guy.
Mmm. I’ll keep reading it, because it’s a rare yuri series and it comes out so infrequently. But so far, it’s not my style.
June 28, 2015
Saburouta – Seven Seas Entertainment – 2014 – 3+ volumes
Shoujo ai! I’m glad this is easier to come by, now. I was torn between this volume and Whispered Words, but this came recently and was on top, so I tried this one out first.
Yuzu’s mom just remarried, which means Yuzu has moved and is at a new school. It’s a fairly classy all-girls school, with a strict dress code that doesn’t agree with the girly Yuzu. No cellphones, makeup, no dyed hair, no accessories, no jewelry, no altered uniform, no clothing other than uniform clothing, et cetera. The Student Council President, Mei, gets on Yuzu the first day at school. Steamed about all the regulations, Yuzu goes home… to learn that Mei is her new step-sister. Worse yet, Mei kisses her. Yuzu spends the rest of the volume trying to figure that out.
Yuzu is outspoken and a little ditzy, Mei seems cold and unfeeling. The chapters each have their own story… in one, Yuzu stands up for Mei and tries to get her and her skeevy fiancee broken up. In another, Mei meets Yuzu’s grandfather, the chairman of the school, and gets herself expelled and her new family broken up. Most of the romance consists of Mei doing something out of character and Yuzu getting confused. At one point while apologizing, Yuzu’s shirt flies open, which I thought was funny.
I haaaaaaaate that they are sisters (seriously, the step-sibling romance plot is one of my least favorite), and I’m not that into the romance yet. But this series seems pretty highly regarded, so I’m going to keep reading.