Archive for the 'Let Dai' Category

10th Jan 2009

Let Dai 15

Rating: ♦♦♦♦♦

I was wrong. This one didn’t break my heart. In fact, it ended everything almost too nicely for all of the angst that we’ve gone through for the previous fourteen volumes. That’s not to say that I didn’t end up tearing up in places. After the emotional roller coaster that these two have put me through, there’s nothing I can do but cry when they start angsting in the slightest bit.

After Jaehee is beaten by Dai-Oxin, Dai comes to his rescue and takes him away from everything that is bad in their lives. Their families, friends and rival gangs all put aside to give Jaehee time to heal and for the boys to fall deeper under each other’s spells.

Jaehee falls a little bit too much under the spell of Dai and neglects to tell anyone just how badly he’s hurt. At the same time, Dai’s parents and the authorities are looking for him, wanting to pin the blame for Miss Crangela’s beating on him, to further separate our long-angsting lovers.

It’s a satisfying ending. I wanted more, but hey, I’m a perv. It’s been a long road with these two and one that I’m very happy to have gone on. I’m just hoping that this manwah has more up her sleeve so I can get sucked into another one of her stories.

Posted by Cynthia | Posted in ♦♦♦♦♦, Let Dai, Won, Sooyeon | Comments Off on Let Dai 15

07th Sep 2008

Let Dai 14

Rating: ♦♦♦♦♦

Even after fourteen volumes, I’m still amazed by just how gorgeous the art is in this series. I’m still madly in love with Dai and Jaehee. I’m still convinced that they’re going to break my heart. I should not be as in love with this series as I am. It doesn’t have anything in common with the other series that I obsess over, except for the pure emotion that the characters display.

After a night spent celebrating their feelings for each other, the boys fall asleep at Dai’s summer house. Their peace is shattered after Dai’s father finds out what the boys are up to. Dai is dragged away by his father’s bodyguards and his father is bound and determined to permanently separate the two.

Now, Dai’s father has been trying to do this for the past few volumes, but this time he’s managed to do it. He uses his power and his money to get Jaehee transferred to another school. This sends Dai into another cold and destructive cycle. Dai takes all of his feelings and shoves them deep inside, only to have his anger and frustration burst out, causing him to lash out at those who care for him the most.

Add into the mix, the brother of one of Eunhyung’s rapists, Dai-Oxin, who has been wanting to take Dai down as a way of getting revenge for his brother, and it’s a volatile combination. His revenge backfires in a tragic way, hurting guilty and innocent alike.

There’s only one volume left, and much like Love Mode, I’m really going to miss the anticipation of waiting for the next volume to come out. I always try to take my time and read through it twice so I can savor all of the nuances. The only good thing about the series ending is the knowledge that I will be able to re-read the series for pure enjoyment without making reviewer’s notes in my head as I read.

Posted by Cynthia | Posted in ♦♦♦♦♦, Let Dai, Won, Sooyeon | 2 Comments »

30th Jun 2008

Let Dai 13

Rating: ♦♦♦♦♦

Oh, hell. I should know better than to read a volume of this series at work. There’s always something that hits me and hits me hard. This time, it was Naru being the one to hold his father’s hand in the hospital bed as he was dying. Then later, going out to get a tattoo to commemorate his loss.

This is most likely more than you all needed to know about me, but I was holding my father’s hand when he died in his hospital bed and I have a set of dancing skeletons inked on my leg in his memory. Reading that scene brought it all back to me. The smell of the hospital, my family crying all around me and the nurse, helpless to do anything but let him go. My brother was fifteen at the time, so I kept picturing his face over Naru’s. Okay. Sorry for the trip into too-much-information theater. We will now return to your regularly scheduled review.

Jaehee and Dai keep breaking my heart. Dai is pushing Jaehee away until Jaehee runs afoul of a new gang that has been terrorizing the school. After Dai comes in to find Jaehee being beaten bloody by this new gang, his concern for him is enough to make him ignore his father’s warnings and come to Jaehee’s rescue.

I turn into a twittering fangirl when it comes to Jaehee and Dai’s relationship. There is so much angst, and pure affection to temper the angst, that I seriously melt into a puddle of fangirl goo when I read about them.

A friend of mine went out and bought a subscription to NetComics so that she could read the last two volumes online. While I’m tempted to do that, I’m sort of enjoying torturing myself with the wait. What can I say? I guess I’m just a masochist at heart. I just love it so much when I get home from work to find a package with the next volume of Let Dai waiting for me. I hoard the book until Sunday when I have some time to fully sit and enjoy it.

This series is going to break my heart. I’ve come to accept this fact. But, after this many volumes, I think I’m almost looking forward to it.

Posted by Cynthia | Posted in ♦♦♦♦♦, Let Dai, Won, Sooyeon | 1 Comment »

05th Jun 2008

Let Dai 12

Rating: ♦♦♦♦♦

Let me just start off by reiterating how much I love this series. I’m always happy when I read it – even when it’s tearing my heart in two.

So, Dai has run away from his family to find Jaehee sleeping in his bed. The boys decide to escape from the real world for a while and hole up in Dai’s late grandmother’s cabin. The boys spend a blissful few days just enjoying themselves and each other. However, when Dai’s father returns from his exile and sees his son being affectionate with another male, things quickly disintegrate. Jaehee has no where to go but back home to his mother to try to repair their broken relationship.

This time, though, he does have an ally. While his mother still doesn’t approve of her son being in love with another male, when push comes to shove she’s going to support her son. Her support of Jaehee, even against Dai’s father, may be the glue that can hold these two together. Dai’s father seems to be pretty much irredeemable. I think he may be the one to break everything apart. Add into this mix Eunhyung’s mother slowly losing her mind with grief over her daughter, Naru recklessly trying to bring Eunhyung’s rapists to justice, and you’ve got things slowly coming to a head.

I don’t have a good feeling about how this series is going to end. I was talking with another fan before I sat down to read the volume and she commented that they thought that the best it could be was bittersweet. I want more than bittersweet. I want a true, blue happy ending for these guys. I want the only bittersweet part to be my sadness that the series is over.

Posted by Cynthia | Posted in ♦♦♦♦♦, Let Dai, Won, Sooyeon | Comments Off on Let Dai 12

25th May 2008

Let Dai 1

Rating: ♦♦♦

Set in neo-Seoul, Let Dai is about the amoral Dai and the boy he forces into his gang, Jaehee. Jaehee is an honest boy. Polite, a good student and the rest of the things that go with that. Dai doesn’t care who he hurts, as long as he gets what he wants.

Jaehee finds himself being fascinated with Dai and spending as much of his time with him as possible. Dai seems to reciprocate the feelings. The question is how two such different people are going to be able to find a balance between their two extremes and if they can stay together long enough to find that balance.

Artistically speaking, Let Dai is just gorgeous. Some of the best art work that I’ve found in manhwa. Story wise this book could use some work. It was slightly confusing, jumping from character to character with little introduction as to who the next part was going to be about.

Even with this, it was still a fairly engrossing story. Not one of my all-time favorites, but definitely something that someone interested in seeing what’s coming out of Korea should check out.

Posted by Cynthia | Posted in ♦♦♦, Let Dai, Won, Sooyeon | Comments Off on Let Dai 1

25th May 2008

Let Dai 2

Rating: ♦♦♦

Jaehee is still troubled by how things were left between him and Dai. Eunhyung is dealing with the trauma of her rape and Dai is still being Dai.

You have to question Jaehee’s devotion to Dai. In this book, Dai just proves how amoral he truly is. When a bunch of street toughs want to prove how big and bad they are, they use Jaehee as a hostage to try to take down Dai. Dai responds to their bait, but only because he wants to see just who would be stupid enough to challenge him.

The situation escalates until Dai gets the idea to tie Jaehee to the train tracks near by and fight to the finish until the train comes. Jaehee obviously does not like this idea and struggles to get free. The gang starts to beat on him until Dai kicks Jaehee to the ground.

They then tie Jaehee to the tracks. While they’re tying him, Dai manages to palm a rock. Once they’re done, he clocks the head of the street toughs in he head, knocking him unconscious.

In case it wasn’t abundantly clear already, this story is not really for the faint of heart. These characters are very true to life and they’re very violent. You can just see the noose tightening around the characters, propelling them to acts of desperation.

Dai leaves after telling Jaehee that he can’t forgive him and giving him the knife that Jaehee had previously used to stab him with. Jaehee then is left, with the threat of a train coming at some point, to try to free himself with the knife while his hands are tied.

I’m really starting to enjoy this story. It’s so different from my usual fare. The art is superb and the characters are believable. It’s a very different kind of tale and I don’t think it’s going to be everyone’s cup of tea, but I’m finding myself getting sucked in deeper and deeper with each book I read.

Posted by Cynthia | Posted in ♦♦♦, Let Dai, Won, Sooyeon | Comments Off on Let Dai 2

25th May 2008

Let Dai 3

Rating: ♦♦♦♦♦

There are very few series that have art on par with the art in Let Dai. It’s hard to find an artist who is able to draw teenage boys as teenage boys, complete with the slumped, unfinished look and the unrelenting, coltish energy. It’s even harder to find someone who can capture all of that in a few panels. Most teenaged boys in this genre either look very young or completely adult. It’s such a nice change to have the boys look their age.

The other thing that really grabs me about this series is the characterization. As far-fetched as the plot may be, there are a lot of things about it that strike me as true to life.

As much as Dai scares me with his amorality and his violent tendencies, I find myself half in love with Dai, sympathizing with Jaehee and how he’s pulled in many different directions with his feelings for Dai. Then, when Dai lets down his guard, you start to see the events that formed and shaped him into the person he is today and he creeps deeper into your consciousness and sets up house there.

The rest of the characters in the series suck you in too, but there’s just something special about Dai and that’s half of Jaehee’s problem.

So in this book we’ve got Eunhyung who’s still trying to cope with the aftermath of her assault, Jaehee who’s completely fucked in the head over how he feels about Dai, Dai who is not coming from the happiest of homes and Naru who’s completely insane and has a family to match. You know at this point it’s very hard to give more details on the plot without spoiling things for everyone. That’s the problem with reviewing books in a series, by the time you get into volume three or four, you’re so completely entrenched in plot that just about anything you say will spoil the book for someone else.

Net Comics’ presentation of this series has been stellar the whole way through. The only thing that really threw me was the changing of the Korean Won into American dollars. We know this is set in Neo Seoul. We know that Neo Seoul is not American. Maybe it is possible that in world this is set in everything is in American dollars, but it just kind of jerked me out of the world of the story when I read that.

You know it’s a pretty good series when I’m left to nit-pick over things like that. Seriously, this series is really one that should be in people’s collections right along with some of the other classics of the genre. It’s just that good.

Posted by Cynthia | Posted in ♦♦♦♦♦, Let Dai, Won, Sooyeon | Comments Off on Let Dai 3

25th May 2008

Let Dai 4

Rating: ♦♦♦♦♦

Emotional roller coasters are just part of the reason that this series is one of my all-time favorites. Add in top-notch art, a quality translation and a sweetly innocent love hidden beneath adolescent rage and angst and I am one happy camper.

In this installment we have Dai transferring to Jaehee’s school. Even though Dai does not attend classes, he’s the talk of the school because of his reputation.

Dai is still unable to express his true feelings. A chance meeting with Dai, Jaehee and Naru ends with Naru getting beaten to a bloody pulp over Dai’s jealousy over his friendship with Jaehee and his inability to express his jealousy in any other way.

Jaehee is still having a hard time finding a middle ground between loving Dai for who he is and being repulsed by the jealousy and the violence and the head games. Dai’s growing though and at the end of the book is able to bring himself to vocalize his feelings for Jaehee.

With Dai’s emotionally and physically abusive family, Dai’s devotion to his grandmother, and Eunhyung starting to grow and make her own place in the world finds me completely captivated.

I’m pretty sure that I say this in every single review for this series, but this is one series that really should not be left on the shelf at the bookstore. My bitter, jaded heart starts to melt a bit each time Dai loosens one of his layers of anger and angst to let Jaehee in. It’s an all-around perfect series.

Posted by Cynthia | Posted in ♦♦♦♦♦, Let Dai, Won, Sooyeon | Comments Off on Let Dai 4

25th May 2008

Let Dai 5

Rating: ♦♦♦♦♦

For all of my love of smut, Let Dai is the series that I most look forward to getting the next volume of. There’s something about the characterization and the art that sucks you in and does not let you go.

The relationship between Dai and Jaehee starts to grow as Dai rents out a room in an exclusive hotel so he and Jaehee can have a private birthday dinner. There’s something quite sad about Dai and his lonely birthday. Even Jaehee didn’t know what was going on until Dai clued him in.

There’s a slow simmer as the boys reveal the depth of their feelings for each other. Things are going well until an interloper crashes the party, shattering the perfect moment that the boys have found.

We’ve also got Eunhyung finally finding acceptance and the courage to face Dai, but her strength of will is shaken when Dai doesn’t remember her, or what happened to her. There’s also Dai’s father working behind the scenes to find out more about Jaehee and making sure that none of this is going to effect his upcoming election.

I don’t have enough words to describe the love I have for this series. If you haven’t already fallen under its spell, it should definitely be on your must-buy list.

Posted by Cynthia | Posted in ♦♦♦♦♦, Let Dai, Won, Sooyeon | Comments Off on Let Dai 5

25th May 2008

Let Dai 6

Rating: ♦♦♦♦♦

I can’t get enough of this series. Even now, right after I finished volume six, I’m impatiently waiting for my copy of volume seven to come in the mail.

Dai reminds me of a spoiled child at times, when things don’t go his way he throws a temper tantrum, then shoves things/people/feelings out of his way, to show that he really doesn’t care. You would think that after the fact that the boys admitted their feelings for each other in the last volume that Dai would be a tad more secure with his place in Jaehee’s world. However, after a confrontation with Eunhyung and a fight with a rival gang boss, Goohee Jang, the one with the blonde poofy hair, when Jaehee doesn’t jump as soon as Dai orders him to do something, Dai feels betrayed and cuts Jaehee out of his life again.

Never mind the fact that Jaehee was attending to Eunhuyng at the time that Dai ordered him to leave with him and he’s been trying to get his head around the violence that happened to Eunhuyng. Of course no one has actually spoken out loud about their feelings, so it’s just a swirling morass of teenage angst and misunderstandings…

Okay, back to the point. This leaves Jaehee adrift with his feelings, especially when Naru reveals that he’s met Dai a few times and that Dai is not quite as scary as Naru always thought he was. Jaehee is jealous of the slight bit of attention that Dai is paying Naru and all he wants is to have things back the way they were, but Dai’s in a snit and is doing his best to ignore Jaehee at every opportunity. Enter into this mix a young teacher who’s got a thing for saving troubled students, having her eye on Dai, and you’ve got quite the mess.

I just want to grab the characters and shake some sense into them. Grab Jaehee, explain to him about Dai’s home-life, how messed up it is, how he’s really one of the few good thing in Dai’s life and that the reason that he’s being pushed away is not that Dai doesn’t care for him, it’s just that Dai needs to be the only star in Jaehee’s heart.

It’s truly wonderful to have characters that you can feel so deeply about. I’m still hoping for a happy ending, but I’m afraid that with these characters that it’s just not going to happen.

Posted by Cynthia | Posted in ♦♦♦♦♦, Let Dai, Won, Sooyeon | Comments Off on Let Dai 6

25th May 2008

Let Dai 7

Rating: ♦♦♦♦♦

They kiss. It may be a kiss to show off Dai’s deviance, but it’s still a kiss and it affects the boys profoundly. I’ve been waiting for this! Dai kisses Jaehee in front of the teacher who is praying for him, trying to show her that there is nothing redeeming about him. However, instead of condemnation, the teacher shows acceptance of the boys’ relationship.

This throws Dai into a bit of a tailspin, but at least he’s forgiven Jaehee for his imagined indiscretions. Later, Dai invites Eunhyung to a late night meeting in the park. Jaehee knows that getting involved is the worst thing he could do right now, but he’s going to do everything in his power to stop Eunhyung. Of course, she’s stubborn and thinks this is her chance to finally have it out with Dai, so she goes anyways.

It ends in a fury of violence, not between Dai and Eunhyung though, but a chance for Eunhyung to extract a bit of vengeance of her own on her attackers. It’s angry, sad and brimming with teenage angst and stupidity.

It is, in all honesty, my favorite series. Not only are you captivated by the main characters, but you’re sucked into the lives and feelings of the secondary characters as well. You want to see them grow and develop as much as you want to see the main characters grow and develop.

I’m still not sure if there’s any possible way for these boys to have a happy ending, but I’m still rooting for them. And I’m hoping beyond hope that there’s some way that these boys can beat the odds and find happiness together.

Posted by Cynthia | Posted in ♦♦♦♦♦, Let Dai, Won, Sooyeon | Comments Off on Let Dai 7