Rating (Out of 5): ~3
Publisher: VIZ Media (Shojo Beat)
Meet Maria Kawai--she's gorgeous and whip-smart, a girl who seems to have it all. But when she unleashes her sharp tongue, it's no wonder some consider her to be the very devil Maria's difficult ways even get her kicked out of an elite school, but this particular fall may actually turn out to be her saving grace...
Maria's frank nature gains her more enemies at her new school, but her angelic singing voice inadvertently catches the attention of Yusuke Kanda and Shin Meguro. Can these boys mend her hardened heart, or will they just end up getting scorched?
I went into this volume not really knowing what to expect, since I had barely even read the back. I kind of took it at face value, thought the artwork didn't look bad, and the title made me think that there would be some supernatural elements to it. But I don't think there are?
Pretty much, it's about Maria Kawai, who got kicked out of her last school and is starting at a new one not as prestigious as her first. She's seen as a snob, which doesn't help with the fact that she can see through people to their actual personality and motive, and is completely honest about it.
She meets Yusuke Kanda, who actually doesn't like being around people but acts like the happy-go-lucky guy, and Shin Meguro, who gets red easily and is nice but also blunt and not very welcoming around most people.
Throughout most of it, Maria is trying to fit in, not very hard or successfully, by taking Yusuke's advice and trying to put a 'lovely spin' on what she has to say. She gets in trouble with the teachers and the other students don't like her much at all. But she grows closer to Yusuke and Shin throughout the volume, somewhat unaware of the relationship forming.
I did like Maria, with how blunt she is. She sees people as they are, which is better than the masks that they wear, but people are terrible in how they react to her. I hope that it's unrealistic, and I believe it is over-exaggerated in how they react; I think the people at her school are just... dumb, in how they reacted to her.
For quite a bit of the volume, I was unsure who the narrator was. I thought it would be Maria, which is why I was confused at first. For some of it, I think it's in Maria's head (and you can usually tell when that is), but I thought some of the time it might have been in an overhead view, but now I think it might be, and I'm pretty sure that in one chapter specifically it is, in Shin's head. Perhaps it's sometimes Maria, sometimes Shin? Hopefully that will clear up in the next volume.
I'm interested to see her relationship with Yusuke and Shin develop. When in Shin's head, it mentioned how he has feelings for her, so I'm assuming that those are going to start showing more soon. And I like Yusuke, so I'm looking forward to finding out more about him. About all of them, really, since we didn't get a whole lot of any of them in this volume.
One of the first things that catches their attention is that they find her singing. I guess she has a really amazing voice, and she sings Amazing Grace to herself a couple of times throughout the volume, which I thought was interesting, although makes sense as well. So there's the song in the title, and she's referenced as a devil within the book, but is there more to that? It seems like there could be a bit of a darker edge to the series, which makes me think that there could still be a bit of a supernatural part to the story, but I don't really think there will be. Is it all contemporary? That's not really a bad thing, and usually I would almost prefer it, but I was kind of looking forward to supernatural things...
Still, I'm liking it so far, and believe (hope) that it will only get better. I'm especially looking forward to the relationships growing, and seeing where they are going. I want to see the plot move forward, and I'm just looking forward to the next book in general.
Oh, also, the artwork. It's not amazing or anything, but it's definitely not bad. The people's faces look a little... plump, but not in a bad way. And Maria is supposedly gorgeous, while I didn't particularly think she was. I think I'm just getting used to it, though, which I don't mind.