Saturday, April 6, 2013

Manga Review: Itazura Na Kiss, Volume 1, by Kaoru Tada

Rating (Out of 5): 2
Publisher: Digital Manga Publishing/DMP
Volumes: 14 omnibus/23 separate
Spoilers?: Very Minor.

Goodreads Synopsis:

High school senior Kotoko Aihara has had a crush on Naoki Irie since his freshman year. Unfortunately, a few things are discouraging her from him: he's a member of "Class A," the top ranking class in school, whereas she's in "Class F"; he gets the top score on every exam; and he's so smart, popular, and handsome that he's been class president every year. When Kotoki finally musters up the courage to present him with a love letter, though, Naoki outright refuses it, telling her point blank - with a look of disgust and boredom - that he doesn't like "stupid girls." Poor Kotoko's worst nightmare

Something Specific:

  • "I guess geniuses have their own problems, too." The fact that Kotoko says this earnestly just really bothers me. In the review I explain more about how I don't like her, but her saying this just really annoyed me. Because, I just, don't understand how she could think that just because someone is smart (since she isn't) that they would have no problems. Plus, there's the fact that the boy is a complete asshole, and i see that as a very big problem, bit everyone else seems to just ignore it. I just don't understand.


I was really hoping to like this book. I bought several books in this series, for a really good price, online a while ago. And now, I’m a little unhappy about that decision. I’m still planning to read all of the volumes that I got, however, and hope that it gets better.
This book is about a girl, Kotoko, who is in love with a boy, Naoki. She confesses to him and gets rejected on the first page, decides to give up but is depressed, and then finds out that she’s going to be moving in with him, because her house burned down and her father’s friend will let them stay at their house, where Naoki lives. From there, Naoki’s mother and both his and Kotoko’s fathers’ are trying to push Naoki and Kotoko into a relationship. Naoki also has a little brother, who’s a brat. Kotoko’s friends are supportive of her, and she also has a friend, Kin-Chan, who is in love with her.
I don’t like Kotoko. She’s weak, -willed and otherwise. After getting rejected and moving in with Naoki, she tries acting like she doesn’t like him anymore, but at the smallest inkling to him liking her, she blushes and falls for it. Every. Time. She’s just not very smart, or helpful, or anything that would make me like her. I really hope she bucks up or something in the later books.
I also don’t like Naoki. He’s just a straight-up jerk, really; an asshole, even. He yells at her, at points he will give in and help her with something (like cooking or homework) but is usually unwilling. He’s generally just a jerk and I don’t see what the appeal is. At all.
Her friends are alright. Their parents are pushy and I’m not particularly fond of them, nor too bothered by them. Naoki’s little brother is a brat, as I said.
My biggest problem with this series is the art. The art is kind of horrible, honestly. The faces aren’t pretty, the bodies are oddly shaped at times. It’s just straight-up not pretty and I don’t like it. It’s honestly what made this book so hard to read. I mean, I can’t stand the characters, either, but it wouldn’t be so bad if they were at least pretty to look at. And another thing, is that sometimes the art is just fine, in a panel or two; sometimes, the art is actually not bad when the background characters are drawn! Not too often, but once in a while. And it just makes me wonder: why can’t it look like that throughout the whole thing? Ugh.
So, as I said, I already have the next book, so I will be reading it soon. Probably. Not too long, at least, because I do want to get through this series; I just hope it gets better.

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