secretlygeeky: (your heart's a mess)
Sorry, this will probably be a recurring theme in the blog until I eventually get over hnr (which is?? never???).... *laughs hysterically while 'I Should Live In Salt' by The National plays*

For those who don't get the drill; I talk about shoujo (or josei) manga to get over a recent shoujo manga heartbreak of mine. And yes, I read more shoujo manga to get over shoujo manga. Huh.

I never really had the chance to talk about mangaka Yamakawa Aiji before. I first read her work Yajirobee, which is a really cute 2-volume series about a girl and her hot shoujo (step)dad™. I swear there's more to the story but that is not mine to tell for now.

I read her other work Stand Up! for the first time last night... and I judged myself for not reading it sooner. It's a sweet and wonderfully done shoujo manga about tall girl Furuya Utako (nicknamed Utamaru) who falls in love with her seatmate, popular guy Harada Naoyuki. The synopsis is not catchy enough, yeah, but Yamakawa Aiji never fails to deliver her stories in a pure, charming way that you just know that if this manga was done by anyone else, it wouldn't be the same.

What I like the most about Stand Up! is that all of the characters are really likable, most especially lead characters Furuya and Harada. Utako is just the cutest and Harada, while he subtly teases Utako at first (in a non-degrading or misogynistic manner at all, which is... pretty rare in shoujo, considering), is gentle, non-imposing, and is pretty much the best first boyfriend anyone could ask for. I swear, if a lot more guys were like Harada in shoujo manga (or better yet, in real life), the world would totally be a better place.

With that said, Yamakawa Aiji is certainly a new shoujo mangaka favorite, and will definitely read more of her works in the future.