Holy hell, I am wicked glad I’m not in high school anymore.
“Awkward” remains the word of the year where Konatsu and Koyuki are concerned; the two have started up a friendship, but their respective lacks of confidence sure are making it tough for them to be entirely at ease around each other. But if Konatsu is somewhat unsure of where she stands with Koyuki, she does realize she’s beginning to warm up to her classmates – and she even catches onto the fact that Koyuki’s reputation for perfection leaves the other girl relatively isolated. A struggle to be up-front with one another during the summer festival gives way later to a heartfelt moment when Konatsu demonstrates that she’s ready to lead the way on the Aquarium Club’s culture festival presentation, giving some hope that things may begin to creep forward a little less painfully for these two.
I could probably mostly copy what I said in my last review for this series, tweak it a little for this volume, and I’d have my review all set. Watching our heroines fret themselves silly over fairly straightforward things sure is a blast from the past for me to my own high school days. I don’t dislike it, exactly, but it makes for a maddening read as an adult. I would like it if they could move a little more comfortably into being friends – surely even then there’d be plenty of space for the spinning of wheels as they begin to realize – doki doki~! what is this feeling?! – that the way they see one another is something a bit different than as friends. I like these two a bunch, so it’d be nice if they could get their acts together a bit more. Konatsu seems to be more on-track for that at the moment than does Koyuki, who keeps getting pressured into helping out her classmates with prep for the culture festival… because their male classmates keep running off and not doing their share of the work. (Where the hell is their teacher? I know bad teachers are a staple in manga, but, c’mon!)
Another shout-out to the lettering in this volume, which was handled with aplomb by Eve Grandt. She’s done a fabulous job with handling several panels such that they really do help underscore the scenes in question. Overall, another good release of this series from Viz Media.
So! I’m frustrated with this series but I’m going to keep reading. I do wonder if this’d work better for me if I read it in chunks, but I also know I’m inevitably going to read volume four sometime this week… Digital releases sure can be a curse, huh? Ohh, isn’t life hard, poor me! Regardless of my own impatience with the speed of proceedings, given the similarity this bears to life for queer teens, I do think this series is a great suggestion for younger queers to check out.