Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Manga Review: Say I Love You., Volume 1, by Kanae Hazuki

Rating (Out of 5): ~4
Publisher: Kodansha Comics
Release Date: April 29th, 2014
Volumes: 12+
Spoilers?: No.
Volume: 2.

Goodreads Synopsis:


Mei Tachibana has no friends—and she doesn’t need them! Ever since her “friends” betrayed her in elementary school, she’s sworn off friendship entirely. All it leads to is betrayal and heartbreak, and she’s well enough on her own. But everything changes when she accidentally roundhouse kicks the most popular boy in school! However, Yamato Kurosawa isn’t angry in the slightest— in fact, he thinks his ordinary life could use an unusual girl like Mei! He won’t take no for an answer, and soon Mei and Yamato embark on an unwanted friendship that will change both of them forever.


I’ve already read some of this series, plus I’ve seen the anime. Which means that I am already a huge fan, and was one of the people excited when it got licensed. I’m already a fan of the characters, the romance, the art, the writing. It’s been so long since I first read it, though, that this re-read is making it fresh in my mind. Plus, there are extras at the back, including author comments, which I didn’t get in my first read, and I enjoy those.
This series focuses around Mei, a loner who has avoided getting to know people since a bad experience in her childhood. Then Yamato notices her; he's the popular boy, with friends and girls falling all over him. But he's bored with the same old things from the people around him, and Mei intrigues him. He makes this apparent very early on, and Mei gives in, opening her world to all kinds of things--not only romance, but also friends.
Mei is insecure. She’s inexperienced, and she’s already starting to mature by getting to know Yamato and making friends with Asami. She’s a little feisty, hiding her fear of making friends behind it. But she sticks up for herself and her friends, and I like that.
The relationships are still in the getting-to-know-you phase. She’s still learning about Yamato, and he’s good for her, but he’s also still maturing. I think Mei and Asami will be good for each other, having very different personalities and outlooks, but ones that will even the other out, and push the other in the right way. I think I actually really like Asami. She doesn’t get a lot of time for her own story, although she got a little in this volume. She’s upbeat, perky, but also a little used to being picked on.
There’s also some more drama on the way, not only between Mei and Yamato, but between Mei and some other girls. It’s not quite my favorite kind of drama, but it’s pretty good stuff, and the character development that comes along with it is very nice. I’m looking forward to seeing how far it gets in the next volume. 
This is a really good, mature, shojo series. I love the characters, the array of them and their development. I know some people dislike when series strays from the main couple, but I enjoy that. I like getting other characters, their stories, their points of view. I’m excited to get the next volume.

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