Sunday, September 28, 2014

Manga Review: Strawberry Panic, Volume 1, by Sakurako Kimino and Takuminamuchi

The single volume cover
(i.e. my cover)

Rating (Out of 5): ~2.5
Publisher: Seven Seas
Release Date: 2007; omnibus in 2010
Volumes: 2 volumes/1 omnibus
Spoilers?: No.

Goodreads Synopsis:

For new transfer student Aoi Nagisa, St. Miator Girls’ Academy offers her the chance at a fresh start and a way to redefine herself. But these noble intentions go out the window when she catches her first glimpse of honor student Hanazono Shizuma, whose porcelain white skin and goddess-like beauty leave Nagisa speechless.
It’s puppy love at first sight, but naive Nagisa is unaware that Shizuma is a serial heartbreaker who has set her sights on Nagisa herself. Will Nagisa end up as another notch on Shizuma’s belt, or does fate have other plans in store for the new couple?


The new omnibus cover
(much prettier)
This review is based on the previously released single volume books; however, it has been re-released in omnibus format as one volume.

This was kind of weird for me to read. I don’t know if that’s bad to say, and I totally have no problem with any kind of relationship. But, weirdly enough, I’ve never read a yuri manga before. I barely see them in stores (and only recently have I even heard of very many being released over here), and I just prefer shojo over yuri (over most kinds, really). It’s just not a preference of mine.
I picked this up by coincidence, as it was in a local book store near me. I’d heard of it, of course, but never really thought about picking it up.
It's about Aoi, who transfers to a new school, where Hanazono is a very popular, wanted girl,  and who very quickly gets interested in Aoi.
Hanazono seems very dominant, almost like a male character would be in a similarly straight manga, but she also seems a little manipulative. Aoi is pretty oblivious to all the undertones, though. We were also introduced to several other characters, some who like Hanazono, some with budding romances of their own.
I don’t know if I’ll be picking up another volume of this series. It just didn’t really keep my attention enough. I might pick up one of the newer yuri series, though. Some of them look interesting, and I’ve heard some good things. It’s just not one of my preferences for books, though.

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