July 25, 2012
Keiko Kinoshita – DMP/June – 2011 – 1 volume
Reading the Yuri-sensei books gave me a new appreciation for Keiko Kinoshita, so I decided to dust this off, which has been sitting in my to-read pile for quite some time. There are some things I tend to auto-buy when it comes to BL, and this was one of them. I get to them eventually, but sometimes it takes a bit.
Unfortunately, the premise of the pastry chef (Chiharu) and his homeless border (Tougo) is reminding me a bit of Honey Darling, which I read recently. Norikazu Akira has much better art, but Kinoshita’s charm lies in how well she writes her characters. Neither one are particularly memorable, unfortunately, but while Honey Darling has a slightly more interesting story, Honey Colored Pancakes is probably the better book.
It plays out almost exactly how you’d expect. Chiharu takes in Tougo after he strands himself at the restaurant where Chiharu works. Tougo has nowhere else to go, so he winds up staying with Chiharu and is completely useless at anything but seduction. But! Gasp! Tougo is actually a very popular model! How dare he lie to Chiharu and wound his fragile heart!
And… yeah. You know where it goes from there. The rest of the volume is an anthology. Since Kinoshita writes such good characters, I tend to like her short stories better than most. Plus, they all feature adult couples, which is a huge plus for me. There’s a businessman/mangaka relationship where the stoic businessman takes grudging care of the mangaka without the latter being the wiser to his feelings. One is about the awkward beginning of a relationship between a new couple. And the final one is about a rather frigid supervisor taking care of an underling.
None of it is particularly revolutionary, or even that memorable (I read this about a month back and had to re-read it just now because I could remember nothing about it), but Kinoshita’s books always make for a pleasant and very satisfying read, and Honey Colored Pancakes continues the tradition. Again, she writes good characters, and her stories are a lot of fun and more or less exactly my flavor. It delivered exactly what I expected.