Wow, it has been a long time since I talked about a series by FUJIMURA Mari on this site! The other title from her that I have read is Tonari no Takashi-chan. I think I talked about that series back in 2000! It was one of the first series I talked about here, back when I didn’t update as often as I do now. I really enjoyed Tonari no Takashi-chan, so it is surprising that it took me this long to revisit her works. I still enjoy this author’s stories. I’ll have to pick up the books I’m missing. Anyway, this is a one-shot volume containing 4 chapters that are all part of the same story. The art is somewhere between scratchy-messy and simple-clean. It is a non-smutty story, but I must say it’s not for lack of trying on the part of the heroine. Well, it’s not that she is aggressive, there are just some inconvenient interruptions to ruin the big moment. ^_^; The plot is simple, but I like the characters. I actually wish she would have continued the story in further volumes. I would like to know what happens next!
EBIHARA Nanako is a shy girl who has just transferred into a new school. She is nervous but excited about her new school life. In particular, her thoughts revolve around how nice it would be to get a boyfriend. Nanako’s previous school was an all-girls institution, so this will be her first chance to maybe get a boyfriend from the same school. What would that be like? Is there someone at this school that is meant for her? Would it be fun to have a boyfriend? All around her, she sees other happy couples, and she can only sigh at them in envy.
Because she has so little experience being around boys, Nanako is immediately impressed by HORI-kun, the boy who sits in front of her in homeroom. Hori-kun is a funny-looking guy, with large curly hair. He has an outgoing and silly personality, and likes to tell Nanako crazy stories. Nanako is very impressionable, and his cheerful friendship draws her to him. When he hugs her in happiness (Hori-kun is the type to hug or hang all over everyone) Nanako’s heart pounds furiously, and her cheeks feel hot. Could she be falling for him?
But wait, Hori-kun is not the only boy around Nanako. Sitting next to Hori-kun is a boy named UNNO Eita. He seems to be a good friend of Hori’s, but in a way typical of shoujo manga, his personality is the exact opposite. Eita is quiet, reserved, and sullen. Hori-kun drags Eita places, but Eita usually looks like he would rather be elsewhere. As Nanako gets to know Eita, her feelings for him begin to warm up too. Is he anti-social, or just shy?
Hori or Eita? Who will Nanako choose? In a surprise twist, when the time comes for Nanako’s all-important First Kiss, she is the one who actually initiates it! Of course, when his reaction is more like one of surprise instead of passion, she ends up running away, moaning and groaning as if the guy had been the one to steal the kiss. Silly girl, she started it!
After receiving a bunch of mixed signals, Nanako manages to straighten out her love life and pick one of the guys. But it’s not all smooth sailing from there. This is her First Boyfriend, so there is a lot of awkwardness in the relationship. From the first date to the first (mutually initiated) kiss, to her first time…. Nanako has many hurdles to overcome, and it won’t be easy!
This is a fun, silly story of first romance. The boy Nanako picks is fun to watch, because he is just as awkward as Nanako is when it comes to dating. He has this weird fetish about liking Nanako’s ears (they’re small and get pink when it’s cold outside, and he has to resist the urge to place his hands on them to warm them up, yeah, even he wonders if he’s a freak). When Nanako surprises him with some serious discussion about their future, he is just as uncertain. Will they be able to make the relationship work?
I have to admit that my favorite part of this book is actually not part of the main plot. When Nanako goes on her first date, it’s to a movie. And that movie? A sentai/power rangers film called “Yoga Rangers.” Hahah 🙂 All though the date scene, there are little bits of dialog from the movie in the background, and it’s just priceless. The strong Yoga Rangers, using yoga poses and chakras to defeat the enemy! Apparently Yoga Yellow nearly dies in the film, and the other Rangers get to yell out “Yellow~~~~~!” in anguish. It’s awesome. I really want to see a Yoga Rangers comic now 😀
Yeah, there isn’t a whole lot of plot in this book, just teens getting angsty and shy about first love, but it’s a sweet, fast read with many humorous moments. And the Yoga Rangers!