April 6, 2013
You Higashino – SuBLime – 2012 – 1 volume
Another SuBLime title, and I’m a bit behind on my reading from them. This one I picked up purely because I’d read everything else from You Higashino in English. Eventually, I’ll learn that her books scare and disturb me greatly, and stop. Maybe. I mean, if I didn’t learn my lesson after A Fallen Saint’s Kiss, I’m not sure that lesson’s gonna stick.
You Higashino is a big fan of rough stuff. A Fallen Saint’s Kiss was a BDSM volume, but it was basically consensual the whole time. So while I was blown away by what was going on, my conscience wasn’t really crying out. Not about that, anyway. This book, though… it’s about demons, which I’m a big fan of. The demon takes what he wants, which I’m not a big fan of. There are two demons that do this. It’s really hard to read.
Yuzuru is the main character. He’s a small boy with glasses that gets bullied a lot, but the class president stands up for him, so Yuzuru admires him. His world is rocked one day when he goes to the nurse’s office and finds the school nurse, Kokuyo, having sex with a student. What’s worse, that student is found murdered the next day. Yuzuru tries to put it out of his mind… but it turns out Kokuyo wants Yuzuru! He shows up at his house and has sex with him! Yuzuru is terrified by him! But it turns out that it’s the class president, and not Kokuyo, that is murdering the students. Surprise! The class president tries to murder Yuzuru, but Kokuyo stops him in time.
Turns out there are a handful of demons running around campus. Kokuyo is an especially powerful demon, and he’s bonded with Yuzuru because he likes him. The class president isn’t a demon, though, he’s just a psychopath. Anyway, there’s lots of sex. Yuzuru never seems like he’s into it, though. He does consent at the end of the first chapter, but after that, he seems at best confused, and puts up a lot of resistance.
I do like Kokuyo’s powers, which is to say something and make it so. One of the bullies gets bugs in his face when Kokuyo whispers in his ear he should watch out for that. Someone’s tongue falls out at his suggestion. This part is pretty awesome, though it’s downplayed in favor of sex. Sometimes the two go hand in hand, though, like when Kokuyo summons tentacles to get Yuzuru off. Random stuff like that happens a lot.
It’s… it does what I expected, I suppose. You Higashino’s stories always have a lot of sex, though she says herself that this was her first book with supernatural elements. Her style is usually fairly random and lighthearted (aside from being fairly intense, it usually seems like she’s doing things a bit tongue-in-cheek), but I think the supernatural elements work against her here. There’s just an awful lot going on, and it doesn’t quite make sense. But I suppose making sense isn’t the point.
Admittedly, there aren’t very many hardcore BL books like this in English, so if this is what you’re looking for, it’s right here. Also, check out other books by Higashino. You won’t be disappointed. It’s a little too much for me, but at the same time, I do still like her. Her art’s good, her situations are generally ridiculous (as they are here), and as I said, I do kind of like that she doesn’t seem to be taking things very seriously. And I’ll admit that I do like to see a little more steam from time to time. But it has to be more consensual than this, because this creeped me out. So much, actually, that it didn’t even occur to me until just now that this was also a teacher/student relationship, which I also find inherently creepy at the best of times. But I’ll keep buying them. Maybe next time.