Rummanah Aasi
 Manga Mondays is a meme hosted by Alison at Alison Can Read where bloggers can share their passion for reading mangas. It's a great place to get new manga titles to try and to meet new bloggers. Normally I get manga recommendations from friends or what's been popular in libraries. I stumbled upon Boys Over Flowers when I was listening to segment on NPR called "You Must Read This". This short piece caught my attention and I had to find out why it was so strongly recommended. Boys Over Flowers is one of the best selling shojo manga series of all time in Japan and it has been adapted into dramas and animes in Japan, Taiwan, and Korea. Thankfully, the series is now complete so I don't have to wait to see how it ends!

Description (from the book's panel): Tsukushi continues to fight back against the F4 and protect an old friend who has also been given the infamous "red flag." Rui's old flame returns from France. Can Tsukushi really compete with this "perfect girl"? Meanwhile Tsukushi's resistance to the F4 seems like it might actually work.

Review: In the second volume of Boys over Flowers, the relationship triangle that will move this series forward is starting to quickly take form. Tsukushi has developed a crush on Rui, the quiet and most unlike of the stuck-up and hormone-driven of the F4 group who has saved her from humiliation more than once. I like Rui so far. He really reminds me of Jordan Catalano from My So-Called Life, the misunderstood slacker who has so many mysteries behind his gorgeous eyes. Like our heroine, I want to know more about him.
  Under the pretense that Rui would attend a party, Tsukushi allows herself to get excited to attend a party hosted by the richest kids of her school, but soon she realizes that she was only invited to serve as live entertainment as the mean girls publicly belittle her and dump champagne over her head. Instead of running away crying, Tskushi holds her ground and fights back with her words and calls out on the mean girls snarky  and earns our support more than ever.
  Interesting developments happen the next day where Tsukushi finds out that Rui is in love Shizuka, his childhood best friend who has become an extremely popular model that is returning to Japan after a photo shoot in France. Tsukushi is very much aware that can not compete with Shizuka's beauty, popularity, nor social status yet a small part of her hopes that Rui feels something toward her. It's pretty evident that Shizuka only loves Rui as a brother, but maybe it's just me having wishful thinking as I think Tsukushi and Rui would make a great couple.
   Things get more dicey as we find out that Domyoji starts to have feelings toward Tsukushi. He is completely confused and fascinated by her as she is the first girl who calls him out on being a jerk. He tries to win her over by changing his appearance such as straightening his curly hair thinking Tsukushi would see him differently. I'm sure there is more to Domyoji's character than being a clueless jerk. You do see glimpses of her vulnerability and he clearly uses his anger as a defense mechanism. He definitely has a hot temper that gets him in trouble especially when it involves Tsukushi. For example, Domyoji gets jealous and angry at anyone (particularly if it's a boy) who gets close to Tsukushi. He blindly hands out a red slip to the new boy in school. That new boy is actually Kazuya, an old optimistic, yet clueless childhood buddy of Tsukushi who harbors a crush on her. He even has a huge fight with Rui when Rui refuses to join in the bullying. 
   The volume ends on a very interesting incident as Domyoji over hears Tsukushi's Spring Break plan of meeting up with Kazuya at Atami and decides to vacation there as well. Needless to say Tsukushi and Razuya are less than thrilled when they notices Domyoji and the F4 clan. Tsukushi is stunned when Shizuka offers her to join their party and realizes that she really is genuinely nice to let Tsukushi borrow her clothes and help her get dressed up. Suddenly an announcement is made that the lights will be off and everyone needs to choose a person to kiss. The person who kisses Tsukushi is who we do not expect! I'm really curious to see what Tsukushi's reaction will be in the next volume.

Rating: 4 stars

Words of Caution: There is some language in this volume. Recommended for teens and up.

If you like this book try: Boys Over Flowers Vol. 3 by Yoko Kamio, Ouran High School Host Club by Bistco Hatori, Kodocha by Miho Obana, Kare Kano: His and Her Circumstances by Masami Tsuda
2 Responses
  1. This sounds like there's a lot going on. Would you see it's more of a silly shojo or a serious shojo? There's not enough serious shojo manga.

  2. Where's Volume one? I got totally confused with that review and I know it's the name. I can't identify girls from boys with the names. I have a feeling I would have to read this one more than a couple of times to understand it. You didn't say anything about the illustrations. What did you think of that?


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