Thursday, May 10, 2018

Manga Reviews: Otaku and Male Cheerleaders

Wotakoi: Love is Hard for Otaku, Vol. 1
(Wotakoi: Otaku Can't Fall in Love #1)
Release: April 17, 2018
Goodreads Amazon
The awkward, romantic comedy manga about geeks in love that inspired the new anime! Can a professional man who's secretly a hardcore gamer and a woman who's secretly a fujoshi date without their hobbies getting in the way, or revealing each other's secrets?

Extra-long book includes 2 Japanese volumes!


Narumi Momose has had it rough: Every boyfriend she's had dumped her once they found out she was an otaku, so she's gone to great lengths to hide it. When a chance meeting at her new job with childhood friend, fellow otaku, and now coworker Hirotaka Nifuji almost gets her secret outed at work, she comes up with a plan to make sure he never speaks up. But he comes up with a counter-proposal: Why doesn't she just date him instead?

In love, there are no save points.

One of my favorite animes this season is Wotakoi so when I saw the first volume up on Netgalley I requested it so fast I gave my mouse whiplash. I loved it! I don't think I've related this hard to a manga in forever.

Wotakoi is the slice-of-life office romance manga that I never knew I needed! I seriously loved everything about it! I really enjoyed the fact that the romances are between people in their mid-to-late 20s but it also did an excellent job showing older otaku in a positive light! Being in my early 30s myself, it was really refreshing to see representation of anime/manga fans, cosplayers, and video gamers that I could relate more to. After reading it, I can see why this series has been so popular in Japan. I'm so glad that it's finally been translated to English!

I love the romance between Narumi and Hirotaka! They've been friends since they were kids so they know a lot about each other. I found it charming that as well as they know each other they have to start at ground zero romantically. It was fun watching them learn about one another on a such a different level. It's been a while since I've laughed this hard while reading a manga.

Good news! The other romance between Kabakura and Koyanagi is just as good! They are the other couple's work and otaku buddies. They have a slightly different romance since they have been dating since high school. Unlike Narumi and Hirotaka, they know each other completely and their slightly antagonistic romance was adorable. One of my favorite parts was watching them trying to help the other two with their relationship.

The illustrations were beautiful and the storyline was quirky and different! And it had so many fun otaku references. Plus, all of the BL side jokes and gaming references were awesome for this otaku. Overall, the whole thing just cracked me up! If you're looking for a cute and nerdy office romance, I can't recommend this manga enough! I can't wait to get my hands on volume two!

ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley

  5 / 5 Stars!!!

Again!!, Vol. 1
(Again!! #1)
Mitsuro Kubo
Release: February 27, 2018
From the co-creator of surprise anime megahit Yuri!!! on Ice comes a dramatic, funny, time-traveling high school story about what it means to cheer on a friend! What would you do if you had the chance to do everything… again?

Kinichiro isn’t even that bad. It’s just that on the first day of high school, his eyes made him look shifty, so people assumed he was trouble. Now it’s graduation, and he’s looking back on three years with no friends. He never even joined a club. But after a bloody collision and an accidental fall, he wakes up a high school freshman, with the chance to try it all over… AGAIN!!

When I saw that one of the co-creators of Yuri on Ice was working on a new manga, I knew I had to read it! This manga is quite different from Kubo's most recent/popular work, but I found the premise interesting. What if you went through high school as an outsider and had an opportunity to go back in time and redo it over again? Would you change things?

I'm a huge fan of underdog/outsider stories and this manga didn't disappoint that way. As a first volume, it's not quite as inviting as Yuri was and honestly if it were an anime, it'd be one of those shows where I'm on the fence about it for a few episodes before quitting it.

There's a lot going on in this first volume with introducing you to characters, time traveling, and whatever the heck Ouendan actually is. It's kind of like the Japanese version cheerleading but with a lot more drums and less acrobatics. My problem with this volume is that it's definitely a case of too much information all at once and it took me away from the story. I did found some of the characters annoying but I'm all for the changes Kinichiro is making and I kind of want to know what happens after that cliffhanger. I think it's going to be one of those manga series where all the set up happens in the first volume and it gets really good after that.

Honestly, I thought it was okay but I was interested in the characters by the end. I'll be picking up the second volume at one point but I don't know when.

ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley

  3 / 5 Stars

No comments:

Post a Comment

I love to read comments!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...