August 1, 2012
est em – DMP / Digital Manga Guild – 2012 – 1 volume
est em! I knew there was one more volume coming, and I’m thrilled it came out so close to Working Kentauros and Apartments of Calle Feliz. You can read it over at emanga. She’s always worth it.
The main story in the volume is strangely shoujo-ish. Ken and Mari are twins, and always hang out with their best friend Joe. Ken finds himself pulling away from Mari and Joe when Mari begins to insist on the three of them hanging out as a means to try and get closer to Joe, who she has a crush on. Things are awkward between Ken and Joe, though, after Joe confesses his feelings for Ken. Ken isn’t sure how to respond, and he hates feeling like the third wheel when he goes out with Mari and Joe. Not to mention the fact that liking Joe back means he’s betraying his twin sister. It’s a complicated and very sensitive love triangle, and est em handles it quite well. I have to say, I was a little dubious going in, as the cover makes it look a lot lighter and aimed at a younger audience than my favorite books by her. This would have been my last choice of license in terms of stuff I wanted to read from est em. But I loved it anyway. She could do a manga version of the telephone book, and I’m sure it would be delightful. Although… I’ve said that before, and had my wish granted, so I should be careful about what I say.
The other thing about it is that it’s movie-themed. The dates that the threesome enjoy are movie dates, and they grew up constantly going to see them together. Making a movie is one of the central plot points that brings the characters back together after they drift apart. It’s a fun theme, and it works really well with the characters.
There’s also an epilogue to the main story with a time skip, so all the characters are older. I liked it as a resolution, but it doesn’t really add much, unfortunately.
I’m a bit behind on the est em love, unfortunately, as Ultras has just come out and I haven’t jumped on it yet. Again, I was least excited about reading those two titles from est em, but I was so unexpectedly blown away by Kine In!, I’m reserving judgement on Ultras. I’m sure it will be awesome.