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Alethea & Athena
Waiting for Spring volume 7 
14th-Aug-2018 09:18 pm
We discovered that Noragami 19 is closer than we realized, so we decided to do some quick reading to review, and we started at volume fifteen. The result is that our Ace of Diamond watching ended with a bit of a cliffhanger and not time to watch the next episode, but we have no regrets. Man, Noragami is such a good series.

But anyway, it's Reviewsday! And this week, we have a review of Waiting for Spring volume seven to post! Spoilers ahead!

Okay, as usual, life has been pretty hectic, so we have to take some time to remember what happened in this volume, especially because I remember specifically having things I wanted to say about it. So let's see...it was the night before the school festival, and then three chapters about the festival! Okay, I think I have my bearings.

Mitsuki passed out at the end of the last volume, and she woke up! GASP! in Aya's house! Dun dun DUN! Oh my goodness, Aya. I guess it was volume five where he started to really be a sympathetic character (this observation inspired by the fact that five is the volume with Aya on the cover). Which volume is this one again? Seven? There were two people on the cover, and Mitsuki was on six, so...yeah, seven. But anyway, Aya. He makes my heart hurt. For some reason it annoys me when people say their heart hurts, but Aya affects me so deeply that I'm willing to say that about myself despite that. It's true! You can see he cares so deeply for Mitsuki, but she just doesn't like him like that, so it's just not meant to be. I think. I mean, in real life, there would always be the possibility of him winning her over, but this is a shojo manga, and Towa is the hero, so I'm preeeeetty sure Mitsuki's going to end up with Towa. I would also point out that I'm pretty sure very few people have successful first loves in real life, but what do I know? I'm starting to think arranged marriages may not be such a bad idea. Not that I want one, so I'm still not really in favor of them, but if you think about it, shojo manga is kind of like an arranged marriage. The author picks a guy and a girl and puts them together. But I'm just being silly.

Anyway. This chapter with Mitsuki at Aya's house shows us just how big a part of his life she was, even when he was in the United States, and it's so sweet and so sad at the same time. But young Aya was so adorable.

That reminds me of another thing I wanted to say. Somehow lately we keep coming across anime and manga where someone literally overworks themself into illness. Wait, that didn't actually happen in Hozuki, but they did talk about it as a not-super-uncommon cause of death in Japan, which created a vicious cycle that caused Hozuki himself to be overworked. So I guess what I mean is we keep coming across main characters who are overworked, and either make themselves sick or are very angry about it. ...Come to think of it, there was also an episode with the records department people going insane from a type of overwork. But the point is, WE are overworked, and I'm wondering if these characters keep crossing our paths as a way of saying, "Hey! Cut it out!" And I'm kind of glad I get to remind myself of that right now, because we're behind on some work, but we decided we'd rather write reviews instead, and now I'm feeling a little bit more like that was the right choice.

I also wanted to say that Aya was super cute making coasters.

The next day is the first day of the school festival! Tadah! I think Rui is trying to sabotage Towa's relationship...I mean, the bonus manga at the end had him deliberately and openly doing it, but we think he's trying to win Mitsuki over or something. And then he had that conversation with Maki, where he was like, "No, girl, you should totally keep trying!" The unspoken continuation, we assume, is, "And if you can win Towa over, Mitsuki will be free for me!" Alternatively, "If I win Mitsuki over first, then Towa will be free for you!" It's a win-win. There's also Kyosuke, who seems to be a little more low-key about his sabotage. Maybe we're reading too much into it, but he seemed a liiittle extra grumpy when he found out Towa was planning to confess his love, as Ryuji pointed out.

And speaking of Ryuji! We thought he was out of the running because he's so madly in love with Nanase...or so he claimed, but then everyone was like, "You don't really seem like you want her that much, dude." And he, too, seemed oddly opposed to Towa's love confession idea. Like, he specifically called Towa over to talk to him about the whole thing, and was all, "You can't be in love, man, you're gonna be the basketball captain!" Says the (supposedly) in-love basketball captain. It seemed to us like he was trying to convince Towa not to go through with it. And then! he said he was going to try confessing his love again, and tell her he really means it. The panel with the speech bubble made it seem like he was looking at a picture of Nanase, but let's not forget that the first time Ryuji confessed his love it was accidentally to Mitsuki. Man, these reverse harem heroines. "Seven guys!? In two pages!?" (<--one of about one things I remember from Ore-sama Teacher)

But in the meantime, let's talk about Towa's costume. As a cosplayer, I have a bit of a hard time understanding why he has such a problem wearing it in public. It covers everything, and it looks cool, so why not? School festivals are times when you're not supposed to dress normal. On the other hand, he's not a cosplayer, so he wouldn't be used to it, I guess. Especially since dressing up for Halloween isn't something people do every year in Japan. But anyway, the pirate outfit was really cool. We think that pirates are tangentially related to Hawaii. I mean, Hawaii is islands, and islands are in the sea, and pirates sail the seas, so it makes sense that pirates would have contact with Hawaii. I happen to know (she says as if nobody else knows) that some of the Pirates of the Caribbean movie scenes were filmed in Hawaii...which of course is, like, on the other side of the world from the Caribbean, but the point is tropical islands, right? Maybe that's the problem. Occidental pirates would probably be more in the Atlantic Ocean.

But anyway, why do the Japanese associate Hawaii with pancakes? We went to a pancake house in Shibuya, and it was all decked out with Hawaiian theming, and the employees all wore Hawaiian shirts. Come to think of it, there's a fair amount of Hawaiian style going on at the Original Pancake House here in town, too. There must be some Hawaii-pancake connection we were never aware of. Maybe one day we'll look it up.

Ryuji was made to cross-dress again, and I have to wonder how that keeps happening. Is it Kyosuke? I bet it's Kyosuke. It was funny when Nanase asked for a picture and Ryuji didn't want to be in a picture with her if he was in drag, so he demanded Kyosuke trade costumes with him, but Kyosuke's reason was not that he didn't want to dress as a girl so much as it would be a pain in the neck to change clothes.

So yeah, there was festival stuff, and yadda yadda yadda, and then it was over. Mitsuki was sad that her class didn't win the best food vendor thing, but I have to say, she was like, "We have to win so this festival will be special to everyone else, like it is to me," but the whole point of festivals is that they're different than every day. She thinks it's just normal to them, but I don't think so. I mean, I'm probably the first person to say, "Yeah, whatever," about it, but that's going to be true with or without an award. Anyway, I was still happy for her when Oka arranged for the thank you party at the end. That was very sweet. And it was the least she could have done! ...Oh wait, I just remembered, Oka did offer to help when Mitsuki was overdoing it. We were so glad Aya found that note, because we were so annoyed at everyone else's utter lack of ability to work overtime.

Which reminds me, of course Aya came to the festival, too. That was more heart-hurtiness. Aww, poor Aya. I want him to find happiness. But I want Mitsuki to be happy, too, so. Well, I'm sure it will all work out.

But the important part is, Towa was going to confess his love to Mitsuki on the way home from the festival, but then! Oka invited her to karaoke! Oh no!!! The inner turmoil! The one thing Mitsuki has wanted her whole life is to have friends to hang out with, and here she actually had an invitation to go to karaoke, where they probably weren't going to forget she existed (like her previous karaoke excursion), but her other life-long dream is to walk home with Towa! Well, Towa knows how important it is for her to have friends, and let's be honest, he's probably super nervous to the point of saying, "You know what? Some other time's good." So he tells her to go, but! she has to track him down anyway, and while they're alone! He tells her!!! Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww!!! It was very sweet.

But it was also the very end of the chapter, so the only reaction we have from Mitsuki is that she's utterly shocked. We think also happy, but it wasn't entirely clear. This is after the part where she realizes how happy she is to know that Aya will always be there for her, after all, so...there may be some inner conflict there. We won't know until the next volume! Dun dun DUN!

And then there's a bonus manga with Kyosuke messing with everyone. As he does.

Anyway, it was another great volume, and I'm excited to see what happens next!

Aww, what a cute series! If you guys aren't reading it yet, I definitely recommend checking it out!

This week we do have some new releases! Fire Force 11 and In/Spectre 8! I highly recommend them both! And tune in on Thursday for our review of Kiss Me at the Stroke of Midnight 6!

Today I'm thankful for getting to revisit Waiting for Spring, getting to revisit Noragami, getting to watch Ace of Diamond, still finishing our work for today, and Page coming to say hi to us in the office.
13th-Sep-2018 03:41 am (UTC)
""Seven guys!? In two pages!?" (<--one of about one things I remember from Ore-sama Teacher)"
...wait, I don't even remember that from Oresama Teacher! And I didn't remember that you read that series! It does sound funny though and I can perfectly well imagine it happening. (i haven't read the series in a while. it's a little too scattered and I think Nozaki-kun is better formatted to showcase the author's humour and tendency for having a zillion characters.)

Oh. The thing about overworking. A while back, like a couple months ago maybe, I had a dream that was in Manga (as happens now and then) and what I remembered when I woke up was someone expressing the idea that people may act really impressed and amazed at someone (I don't remember if he was talking to me or talking about himself) for their workaholic tendencies, but actually they look down on it or recognize that it's not a healthy way to live. I don't know if I'm putting it into words well. And also it's a dream so it isn't necessarily all true. It was just like this BAM concept that really struck me in the dream and right after waking, but it's hard to recapture that now. Anyway it was probably something I needed to be telling myself at the time. And I was (and still am) amused that the dream decided to manifest in manga-form. (not necessarily like I was reading a manga in my dream, but the imagery of the dream itself was manga art...)

The reluctance to dress up in what looked to me like a perfectly cool, if flashy, costume reminds me of a similar happening in Io Sakisaka's current series. I don't think you read that one though, so... (but it was a really really cute scene. and it's a really cute series overall, my current favourite from Betsuma!)

(I'm sorry, apparently I only have tangential things to say and nothing about the volume itself. It was a fun one though!)
14th-Sep-2018 03:17 am (UTC)
We only read maybe three or four volumes of it before we got distracted away from it. The "seven guys in two pages" thing was from when the characters were reading a shoujo manga.

When we hear about someone overworking, all we feel is sympathy. Sometimes there might have a bit of, "Well, don't." but we've been overworking ourselves for too long to have any of that. And we definitely don't do it out of any desire to impress people...well, maybe to impress our editors, because I admit sometimes the reason it's hard to turn down a new assignment is that we don't want our editors to think we hate them.

Back in college, we were discussing doing a translation for our aunt on our Mom's side, and we were chatting online about it when our Dad showed up to take us somewhere, and we excused ourselves and told her why, and we never heard from her again. We later found out that she thought we were blowing her off. So now we're always afraid to say no, even for legitimate reasons, because we don't want to accidentally burn any (perhaps excessively volatile) bridges. But it's gotten to be so bad that we're finally convincing ourselves that even if the worst happens and they never come to us again, that just means less work, and that's a good thing (at least, it is at this point in our lives).

Haha, no we haven't read anything Shueisha in ages, because it was just too depressing. We did recently find out that they're calling Aoha Ride "Ao Haru Ride," and it drives us nuts. I mean, I think I might get why they did it, but the explanation (of what the title means) works just as well either way (I mean, the Japanese even changed the "ru" to a "ra"), and "haru ride" is ridiculously hard to say. When will localization specialists learn that two Rs in quick succession is one of the hardest things to say in English?
14th-Sep-2018 04:27 am (UTC)
Man, I'm sorry about your bad experience with your aunt who assumed you were blowing her off! Your precautions against disappointing people are understandable given your experiences. But on the other hand, we know you've got editors who like you a whole lot :)

Oh yeah, the Shojo Beat edition's title...I'd gotten used to thinking of that as the Japanese title, since it's written out that way under the katakana on every cover. But then Blue Spring Ride was what I usually called it anyway. I think SB explained their reasoning being based on fan familiarity or something; maybe keeping the Japanese title is also a tactic against piracy, since now people searching that name will be directed to links to the official release. (I was googling Yona of the Dawn this evening and finding all these reviews on Goodreads of the latest, not-in-English volumes listed under the Japanese title, and it was rar.) Still obviously I don't think it's right to leave most titles in Japanese... Anyway, the new series has another unwieldy title and that's why I just call it Io Sakisaka's new/latest series.

OH I was also bopping around mangaka twitter accounts the other day and came across Shizuki Fujisawa's and saw she has a new series so I found a preview of the first chapter (which might be all that's been published yet) and it's CUTE. And centered on a family (4 brothers), aww! (but if we're going to talk about series I think you should read, Kodansha's still got a great wealth for you to catch up on in all your free time, so no pressure.)
16th-Sep-2018 04:01 am (UTC)
That is true. :D

It's not that they kept the Japanese title, it's that they changed it to something else Japanese, that's harder to say. And I get that explaining it is hard enough without having to get into "haru + ride = haride," but I care more about how things sound, and to me, Aoha Ride is way better than Ao Haru Ride.

Of COURSE it's cute, Fujisawa-sensei is amazing. I guess we'll just have to add it to the list of manga to order in the Mythical Time.
17th-Sep-2018 04:01 am (UTC)
(oops, I was logged out when I left this comment! I'm sure you knew who it was anyway but that explains why I didn't get an email about your reply...)

Hooray for the Mythical Time! That'll be such a fun time whenever it rolls around :D
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