Archive for the 'Yamashita, Tomoko' Category

14th Dec 2009

Black-Winged Love

Rating: ♦♦♦

You know, I’m really tired of anthologies. Still, they are a good way to get introduced to an artist, and get a feel for their work. This release, while being very charming and very well drawn, left me feeling a bit lacking. The stories were very good, and I really liked the characters, but in a short format like this, I didn’t get enough of them. For most of the stories in this anthology, I would be happy to read an entire manga devoted to the characters and their problems.

I guess that’s really not something to complain about. But, it did leave me feeling unsatisfied at the end.

I think my favorite story revolved around the character that was the oldest of six children.
Now, this being Japan, this is a bit of an oddity, and he’s embarrassed by the fecundity of his parents. He also doesn’t want to let his family know that he’s gay, in case they react badly. A surprise visit from his lover has him questioning his decisions, and a slip of the tongue has him coming out to his siblings, who are more supportive than he could have ever imagined.

It’s sweet, and it’s slightly silly. The only thing that could improve the story would be the addition of some smut. Well, that and to expand on the characters.

One thing I really did enjoy about this release was the real lack of happy endings in the majority of the stories. These stories seem much more true to life, than a lot of the stereotypical BL stories that always end with true love and buttsex. Much like the releases by Est Em, who is currently my favorite artist working, these stories show a subjective kind of happiness. Something that will get you through right now, but is not the shojou flowers and joy that I’m used to.

It is a nice change. I just wish there was more of this!

Posted by Cynthia | Posted in ♦♦♦, Black-Winged Love, Yamashita, Tomoko | 2 Comments »

09th Nov 2009

Dining Bar Akira

Rating: ♦♦♦

I really enjoyed this one. Aesthetically, it’s just what I’m looking for in a release – slightly sketchy, with extremely emotive facial expressions.

We start off with Akira, the manager of a successful restaurant and bar. Things are going fairly well, or at least as well as a chaotic kitchen can ever run, until Akira gets a confession of love Torihara, one of his young employees.

This is all well and good, but Torihara is six years younger than Akira, and Akira has never considered a same sex relationship before. Now, this being the wonderful world of BL, these little complications won’t stand in the way of getting the two pretty boys in bed together. It’s just a matter of applying the right amount of angst and seduction to get these two to see that they really need to be together.

This release is really about its gorgeous art, and some wonderfully comedic perving and angsting behind kitchen doors. This is a real treat for manga lovers.

Posted by Cynthia | Posted in ♦♦♦, Dining Bar Akira, Yamashita, Tomoko | 1 Comment »