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Alethea & Athena
First Love Monster, volume 6 
1st-Mar-2017 09:29 am
Well, Gaston's coming today and we're going to Disneyland. I know, it's a terrible idea given our current workload, but we're just going to do it anyway and deal with the resulting work crunch later. There's still hope that some of the books we have to translate later in the month won't take long.

Anyway, once Gaston gets here, we'll be cut off from LJ, so we wanted to make sure to post a review for Review Rednesday before that happens. This week we bring you First Love Monster volume 6! Athena is now monologuing about the spoiler level warning: "Is it even possible to spoil this series? Let me tell you what happens in every volume. They put Kouta in a dress. There's some stupid misunderstanding between Kanade and Kaho, likely involving Taga." But we haven't read this review yet, so we'll find out if that's true! ETA: We've read it now, and yeah, it's basically true. Although (spoiler alert) this review makes no mention of Kouta in a dress in this particular volume (that doesn't mean it didn't happen).

Athena says, "I don't know if I can't remember the events in this volume because I blocked them from my memory or if it's because nothing really happened." I remember the beginning, because I think if I hadn't been predisposed to dislike this series by now, I might have thought it was really funny. Love her or hate her, you can't deny that Akira Hiyoshimaru is an expert at coming up with random nonsense. Athena says it's kind of like Sailor Moon Crystal in that there are some elements here and there that seem really nice, but they're all jumbled together in a soup of distasteful seasonings that make the whole thing blah.

For example, the love triangle stuff at the end of the main story would be really sweet if we weren't already like, "Oh, come ON!" At this point, I really can't tell if Atsushi is in love with Kaho or Kanade, but we guess the point is that he doesn't know, either? Kaho makes a comment somewhere in this volume that the same things repeat over and over, and we're like, "You got that right." This volume ended with Atsushi kissing Kaho, so volume seven will end with Kanade breaking up with Kaho, and volume eight will end with Atsushi kissing Kaho, ad infinitum. Ad nauseum, Athena corrects me.

Athena says, "I want to say it wasn't SO bad...but it was." But then I said no it wasn't, because there wasn't a lot of text in this volume, and text-light volumes are always nice. Unless all the text is puns. But this one wasn't too heavy on puns, either! Except for the one chapter, which I think we mostly dealt with okay. We had to completely change the meaning on one string, but for the most part we were able to keep things relatively the same. Thank goodness for thesauruses.

For all our dislike of this series, it does make some interesting points about human behavior. Like when Chiaki tells Kaho about the person who's in love being in the weaker position. But mostly I feel like I've seen people act similarly to how Atsushi describes Kaho's behavior. On the other hand, whenever he starts to talk about her behavior, it starts to feel like he's alluding to some sort of deep dark past of hers, which we're pretty sure isn't a thing. But it's also true that she didn't have any friends, so maybe that's all there is to it. But when he talks about her liking Kanade because he never asks about the things she doesn't want him to ask about, we have to ask, "Like what?"

I remember! Morning glories! I like morning glories. This volume taught us that you can make dye out of them! We Googled it and found out how! And when we Googled it in English to see if it was a thing in English-speaking countries, we found out that apparently it's not, really, but someone wrote something about how she made dye for her knitting projects, and since Athena recently got into weaving, we thought that was a neat idea. Unfortunately, we don't really have a yard to grow morning glories in, but it's still a neat idea.

Anyway, what with Kanade taking Kaho's kiss back from Atsushi and the extra chapter about Ken Tanaka, this series is starting to become more overtly BL. This trend doesn't surprise us, or affect our opinion of the series much, but I guess I felt it was worth pointing out. And who knows? Maybe they'll start shifting away from all the Hanako stuff.

That's all for this week! As for new releases, yesterday volume three of The Prince in His Dark Days hit bookstores! And tune in next week, for our review of Fire Force 2!

Today I'm thankful for the lovely idea of morning glory dye, plans to go to Disneyland with friends, still having time to post a review, more of those chocolate cookie things from Hershey's, and having time to get some work done before Gaston arrives.
2nd-Mar-2017 10:48 pm (UTC)
"As for new releases, yesterday volume three of The Prince in His Dark Days hit bookstores! And tune in next week, for our review of Fire Force 2!"
That does not follow. I was hoping for your review of Prince vol 3. Maybe the week after :D

Edited at 2017-03-03 01:48 am (UTC)
3rd-Mar-2017 05:37 pm (UTC)
It's been an established practice for Review Rednesdays to post that week's releases and then say what we'll be reviewing the following week. It has not yet happened that the review was on that week's release list, and this is the first complaint I've gotten.

You suggest that the two statements didn't follow, but they did, according to past practices. Now, I can understand that if you saw the first sentence and thought the second one would indicate that that would be the review next week, that it would seem confusing because your expectations were not met. However, nothing in either sentence indicates a cause or effect. If I had said, "Yesterday volume three of The Prince in His Dark Days hit bookstores, so tune in next week for our review of Fire Force 2," that absolutely would have been incorrect and confusing.

The purpose of saying what was released this week if to let readers know what's available. The purpose of saying what we'll be reviewing next week is to give people time to read it in case they want to read that review and not deal with spoilers.

Unfortunately, we do happen to translate a great deal more series than you appear to be reading (we just don't feel the need to turn down shonen titles), and we want to review them just as much as we want to review the titles you are reading. We're willing to rearrange the order if people request it politely, especially if it seems like we can get a dialogue going, but the review for next week is already set because it has already been announced. And because we really like Fire Force! There's no way we're going to bump it! (In fact, we're more likely to move it up on the list just because we feel like it, whether or not anyone requested it.)
3rd-Mar-2017 05:44 pm (UTC)
"... and this is the first complaint I've gotten."

I'm sorry, I didn't mean to offend. It's true like you said that I had expected something else. Again, I'm really sorry that I offended you. (The comment meant to be a joke - bad one on my part.)
3rd-Mar-2017 09:13 pm (UTC)
Apology accepted! No worries!
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