Lenni Reviews: “Perfect World” Vol 12, by Rie Aruga

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In this final volume, we see how Tsugumi and Itsuki are handling being the parents of a young boy names Koki; a very energetic child who doesn’t think anything is ‘wrong’ with his father. He’s just a happy child and they have mostly normal parenting stresses. Since the main couple is firmly established, we have other side characters stepping in for a few asides like how wedding planning would go for a couple in wheelchairs.

All in all, this is a great series with some important information delivered with a good story. If you like romantic drama, this is a sweet series. 4 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Look Back” by Tatsuki Fujimoto

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*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review.

Fujino loves to draw manga and since she makes comics for the school newspaper, she’s popular. By chance she meets another girl in town who also loves drawing named Kyomoto, who’s a shut-in who doesn’t have other friends. They team up to make a manga for a contest but as they develop as artists, their lives take different paths.

This is beautifully done; showing the way people’s lives naturally come together and grow apart. It’s compact with plenty and the emotions and the art allows the expressions tell so much more than just the words on the page. I do think the tragic event is… Abrupt. It threw me off. Such things can happen but it blindsided me, which was likely the point. 4 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “My Boy” Vol. 9, by Hitomi Takano

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In this final volume, Mashuu’s father makes some important realizations and Satoko comes to terms with her childhood trauma.

To end this series, Mashuu and Satoko just accept their relationship is unconventional and go on with their lives. It’s not exactly a bittersweet ending, more like what’s the most sensible for the characters at this point. Much like their relationship overall, the ending is muddled but fits them. I’m glad it didn’t go sideways and everything was handled with grace and respect. This is a great series. 5 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “My Boy” Vol. 8 by Hitomi Takano

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As Mashuu starts high school and while he still sees Satoko from time to time, he finally realizes his classmate, Nao, has feelings for him. Meanwhile, Satoko’s ex boyfriend, Shiikawa comes back into her life.

Here, Mashuu and Satoko have to face how their relationship affects others. Their connection is confusing but undeniable and getting in the way of more “normal” relationships with people of their respective ages. I like how forthright this series is but I’m still not seeing the controversy? It’s all non-sexual. There’s one more volume left so I hope this doesn’t take a sudden dark turn. 4 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “My Boy” Volume 7, by Hitomi Takano

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Satoko meets with a lawyer about her contact with Mashuu; ensuring she won’t face any legal ramifications when continuing to meet with him. Mashuu, however, finally starts to realize there’s more to life than Satoko.

This volume is kinda wholesome. You can see Satoko is still dealing with junk from her childhood and her relationship with her parents; who still see her like she’s a kid. Mashuu also sees Satoko sees him as a child (because he is) and realize he needs to be able to connect with someone other than her. They seem to end on good friends here and I like it. 4 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “I Want to Eat Your Pancreas” by Yoru Sumino & Izumi Kirihara

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Our protagonist finds his classmate’s diary and she, Sakura, admits to him that what he read is true: She is dying and has never told any of her friends in school. She would rather life out the rest of her days without getting treated differently but a friendship blossoms between them despite him usually being uninterested in other people.

This is a tearjerker. Much like Your Lie in April, Sakura is overly positive and perky (very much like a manic pixie dream girl) as a complete opposite to the boy who she befriends; so she can draw the boy out. Their relationship is touching and bittersweet, as there is nothing that will save Sakura.

But… The ending… I won’t spoil it but I’m not sure if I like it or not. I’m torn with it showing the bleak realities of life or pushing for an even sadder ending. Either way I took a star off for that. 4 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “My Boy” Vol. 6, Hitomi Takano

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While Satoko and Mashuu reconnect, Satoko’s sister Mayu and Mashuu’s classmate Nao are now drawn into this drama; digging into Mashuu’s past in order to learn more about him.

This volume is odd since Satoko is fishing around with people who know Mashuu so she can find out more about him and his home life but also pushing Mashuu to spend time with people who aren’t her; finally setting some sort of boundary. So… She’s setting a boundary and also crossing one? I mean, it seems to fit with her character since she was meddling when Mashuu was younger but still, strange. 4 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “My Boy” Vol. 5, by Hitomi Takano

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After being separated for two years, Mashuu is determined to see Satoko and spend time together like they used to. But there is a distance between them that makes it hard for them to reconnect; even when Satoko’s job brings her back to Tokyo.

I am loving this series and this volume is where we tread into the taboo. Both of our main characters are grappling with a torrent of feeling and because this is written to earnestly, it’s easy to get invested in them. I’m still on the fence about the ‘controversial’ tag at this point because I’ve seen some shit. Killing Stalking feels more controversial to me than this but I guess when you’ve had a taste of darker fair like that, My Boy feels absolutely quaint in comparison. This series touches on how their connection is odd but as of this volume, everything is still platonic. It’s thought provoking for me, for sure. 4 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “My Boy” Vol. 4, by Hitomi Takano

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After Mashuu’s father finds out Satoko hasn’t been completely honest with him, he has her transferred to Sendai; her hometown. She moves back in with her mother and sister and has no contact with Mashuu again until he’s fourteen years old. But Nao, Mashuu’s classmate, notices a big change in his behavior once he’s talking to Satoko again.

It’s nice to see things from Mashuu’s point of view this time. We’ve seen a lot of how Satoko was impacted by their connection; making her seem like she was relying on him but he was really happy to know her and it made him happy to spend time with her even though she’s so much older than him. I like this series and I’m glad I picked it up. 4 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “My Boy” Vol. 2, by Hitomi Takano

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As Satoko and Mashuu hang out and grow closer and she sees what life at home for Mashuu is really like, Satoko’s boss/ex-boyfriend starts to notice changes in her behavior.

While this series has a reputation, I’m getting Kotaro Lives Alone vibes from Satoko and Mashuu. However, when Shiikawa (the ex) mentioned “how would you feel if some random adult was doing all this stuff for your kid” it his home as a parent. As a reader, I’m seeing this from a different perspective as someone in the world and I get how it would seem odd. As presented to us, we see Satoko just being nice (so far) to a kid that needs it but, yeah; it could come off as creepy. A stranger could have ill intentions and I sincerely hope that is not where this story is going. 4 out of 5.

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