Lenni Reviews: “Perfect World” Vol. 4, by Rie Aruga

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Itsuki feels he can’t be a burden to Tsugumi and breaks up with her, allowing Koreda to swoop in as her support. But Tsugumi can’t seem to catch a break as she must leave Tokyo and go back to her parents due to a medical emergency.

Geez, just throw everything at this poor woman all at once. But, this volume shows how strong she is and Tsugumi keeps moving forward and doing what she needs to do. I think Koreda is being an opportunist no matter how nice he’s being. In my opinion, he should have let Tsugumi process the breakup before immediately taking Itsuki’s place. But, nobody is really terrible in this series. Even Tsugumi’s parents are sympathetic in their own way. I think things are portrayed realistically and that’s important for this subject matter. 4.9 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Perfect World” Vol. 3, by Rie Aruga

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Tsugumi is recovering from her accident and while her parents come to help take care of her, her parents insist Itsuki is unable to properly care for their daughter and beg him to break up with her.

A mild nitpick here that’s slight spoilers: Nagawa (the aide) who helps Itsuki is a former nurse and we find this out when Itsuki needs a DRF (don’t click if you can’t handle poop) when he ends up in the hospital. She tells the doctors “Yeah, I was a nurse. I can do it.” Can you just do that in a hospital? Just say that and the doctors say “Well, if you say so, go ahead?” Without any proof? I dunno, that made me pause…

Other than that, this volume amps up how disability can put extra pressure on a relationship; the stress, pain, and embarrassment… Especially when you remember being able bodied and needing all this help. I like how this series is handling it. Nothing feels like it’s checking off a box on a list. It reminds me of With the Light. 5 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Perfect World” Vol. 2, by Rie Aruga

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Tsugumi has begun to take Itsuki but is keeping it secret due to the stigma and gossip around Itsuki being in a wheelchair. But with the stress of meeting Tsugumi’s parents, Itsuki’s aide Nagasawa, as well as a former classmate who still has feelings for her, Tsugumi is burning the candle at both ends trying to prove she can be a good partner to Itsuki.

Now, we’re getting into the rough parts. I dunno about adding in another set of love rivals as the existing conflict seems like enough for me. There are complications that come with dating someone in a wheelchair; and it’s more than just not finding a ramp and random people who can’t mind their own business. But we’ll see how it goes. They may turn out to be interesting. 4.9 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Perfect World” Vol. 1, by Rie Aruga

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Tsugumi and Itsuki went to high school together but drifted apart as they grew older. Tsugumi had a crush on Itsuki and is shocked to see him when her company and his have a work party and she still has feelings for him. She is shocked, however, to see is is now in a wheelchair; having suffered a tragic accident that left him a paraplegic.

Not many people know what it’s like to date someone who’s disabled and not many comics (or other media, honestly) address the unique complications that comes with doing so. Plenty of media have background characters but this puts one front and center with all the cards on the table.

Tsugumi is almost too perfect. I hope she goes through the full range of emotions rather than stick with being a go lucky saint the entire time. I do like how Itsuki isn’t a biter, angry character trope or an overcompensatingly happy person to “compensate” for being in a wheelchair. He’s got issues but he’s a realistic character and I look forward to watching their progress. 4.7 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Yakuza Lover” Vol. 5, by Nozomi Mino

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*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review and is 18+

As Oya and Yuri continue their relationship, a hostess, Choko, that works in a bar associated with Oya’s group becomes jealous of Yuri and wants to get rid of her.

The Choko rivalry is wrapped up pretty quick, as I’ve come to expect from this series. The point isn’t really to have major conflicts, it’s to see Oya and Yuri bone all the time and say how in love they are. It’s ok I guess. If I’m reading a romance, I tend towards more plot driven titles with some decent stakes but I’m down for a calmer story if the characters are interesting enough. This series is kinda boring; not gonna lie. 2.9 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Ima Koi: Now I’m in Love” Vol. 2, by Ayuko Hatta

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

Satomi and Yagyu are dating after Satomi had the courage to make good on the promise to herself to be honest and confess to the source of her crush right away. Things seem to be going well until Yagyu’s little sister, Juri, insists on tagging along with them and wants her brother all to herself.

Even with Juri bringing in some conflict, Satomi and Yagyu are too perfect. Not that I need high angst in my romances but this doesn’t feel like low angst, it’s no angst. Juri isn’t the type of character you love to hate, she’s just annoying and unpleasant to deal with. In general, I didn’t feel there was enough going on to enjoy this volume, even as a slice of life manga. 3 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “My Love Mix-Up!” Vol. 3, by Wataru Hinekure & Aruko

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

While on a school trip to a ski resort, Ida finds out the back story of the eraser and the misunderstanding with the names. However, Aoki’s crush on Ida is very real and he gathers up the courage to confess to Ida properly this time.

I like how realistic things are here. People fumble about, misstep, and are awkward but trying their best. Nobody is catty or conniving (so far), they all just want to make a connection with the person they like. It’s meanders around a bit but it’s an enjoyable read. 4 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Ima Koi: Now I’m in Love” Vol. 1, by Ayuko Hatta

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

Satomi is a first year high school student ready to have the high school crush experience. She had a crush on someone in middle school but never told him, something she vows won’t happen again. On the way to school, a pervert tries to grope her but she is saved by Yagyu, a boy in the same grade as her. Now Satomi is given her chance to keep the promise she made to herself to make sure she confesses her love.

If you are in the market for a lighthearted, clean, cutesy love story, this is a sweet read. It’s simple and to the point with all the best parts of this genre. 3.5 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Yakuza Lover” Vol. 2, by Nozomi Mino

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*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review and is recommended for mature readers.

While Oya is spoiling Yuri on a trip, a rival gangster Semilio kidnaps Yuri in order to get Oya’s attention.

Ok, well… In a way, I got what I was hoping for – Yuri contemplating the type of life she will have dating a yakuza. Yet, while the kidnaping is the main conflict here, Yuri doesn’t get far passed “I love him even though nearly getting raped and killed is scary.” Ma’am, can you express some further thought to the danger you’re in? I don’t know if I’d just dump the guy but I’d spare more than a passing thought to my safety. Yuri just hops into bed with him and wants to fuck until she feels better. But I guess that’s not the type of story this series is; this is a whirlwind romance with a dangerous guy who’s shamelessly devoted to you. It’s pure fantasy and doesn’t want to take itself seriously. 3 out of 5.

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Lenni Reviews: “Yakuza Lover” Vol. 1, by Nozomi Mino

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*This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review and is recommended for mature readers.

Yuri wants a boyfriend but hasn’t met the right guy. While at a party, she meets the exact wrong type of guy and is rescued by Toshiomi Oya; an underboss for the yakuza. While the pair have an instant attraction, Yuri is scared of Oya’s dangerous life.

This isn’t my usual genre but I wanted to check it out because of the huge difference in our main leads. It is a typical fiery girl and tough guy with a heart with some semi explicit sex scenes. If you like insta-love and insta-lust in your manga, this will probably suffice but it was just a meh for me. There’s a power imbalance in the relationship that raises red flags for me but again, this isn’t my usual fare. 3 out of 5.

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