It’s been a while and I bought a lot of mangas. There are many promos at different sites so I just grab the Harlequin and Romance comics I don’t have yet in Japanese. Here are some of those latest acquisitions. Details, information and samples are available at my Harlequin & Romance comic raws collection page.
- Jessica Steele & BEPPU Chizuko: A Most Suitable Wife (translated)
- Michelle Reid & KOHAKU Yuu: The Greek’s Forced Bride
- Lucy Gordon & TAKAYAMA Mayu: Married Under the Italian Sun (translated)
- Meredith Webber & YAMASHITA Tomomi: Sheikh, Children’s Doctor…husband (translated)
- Rebecca Winters & HIDAKA Nanao: A Royal Bride of Convenience
- Penny Jordan & JET: Wanting His Child (translated)
- Jane Porter & DAN Karan: A Dark Sicilian Secret
- Sandra Marton & NAGASAWA Satoru: The Sheikh’s Rebellious Mistress
- Liz Fielding & NAKAYAMA Sara: Her Wish-list Bridegroom
- Annie West & MOMOSE Natsu: Girl in the Bedouin Tent
- Chantelle Shaw & KUSUNOKI Kei: Argentinian Playboy, Unexpected Love-Child
- Olivia Gates & KYUKA Min: The Once And Future Prince (translated)
- Lynne Graham & HOSHIAI Misao: The Frenchman’s Love-child
- Natalie Anderson & MINATO Yoriko: Unbuttoned by Her Maverick Boss
- Debbie Macomber & SHINOZAKI Kaoru: Lonesome Cowboy
- Leanne Banks & NARUKAMI Yutta: Billionaire Extraordinaire
- Sharon Kendrick & UESUGI Kanako: Getting Even
- Jane Sullivan & HANATSU Yoshiko: Risky Business
- Leanne Banks & TOMOI Miho: The Prince’s Texas Bride
- Abby Green & YOKOI Rina: Bought for the Frenchman’s Pleasure
And the non-Harlequin mangas:
- KUREBAYASHI Tsukiko: Doctor ni Koi no Wana wo
- Nora Roberts & KOBAYASHI Hiromi: Endings and Beginnings
- Misaki Chihiro & SASAKI Misuzu: Yuuwaku no Wana
- Judith Ivory & SANAZAKI Harumo: Sleeping Beauty (2 books)
- Emma Holly & TAKAMURE Tamotsu: Beyond Innocence
- Anne Hampson & SAGARA Kyoko: A Kiss and a Promise
- Carole Buck & HIMURA Soraha: Intruder’s Kiss
- Carole Buck & TSUJI Rikako: Fallen Angel
- Clarence Budington Kelland & OGATA Hiromi: Mr Deeds Goes to Town
- MOMOKAWA Haruhiko: Sheikh to Shakunetsu no Sapphire
Maybe I’m in a foul mood, or maybe it’s that bad cold making me cough for over a month that’s turning me grumpy. I absolutly dislike Beyond Innocence illustrated by Takamure Tamotsu-san. It’s one of the rare Emma Holly’s novels I’ve read and liked. Even if I don’t expect a manga adaptation to be accurate, I barely recognize the story.
First, I’ve always disliked Takamure-sensei’s art style, since ages ago when I first discovered BL genre and this artist’s name naturally came up. Her style hasn’t evolved, her drawings have not improved. To me, the characters all have mice’s faces.
I do wonder why the publisher contracted this mangaka to draw shoujo or josei. It’s ironic how in a few nude pages, Takamure-san proves she can draw a decent naked female figure but in the entire manga, the artist draws very weird clothed female figures. The problem is mostly the bosom.
What’s wrong with all those women’s boobs? Either their dresses shape their chests as if you’ve put oranges to fill in the loose cups but the oranges go salsa in every direction, or it looks like the ladies have all stolen Madonna’s kitschiest cone bustier to put under their dresses and whether you look at them from the front or the side, in the manga, the boobs appear like pointy triangles.
And since I don’t like Takamure-sensei’s art, I tend to get obsessed with the misproportions and anachronistic details. Overall, the manga feels dull, through and through. Emma Holly is known for her erotica, this manga is plain boringly tame as any regular softcore Harlequin comics. You have a bit of fondling, a bit of kissing, a bit of nudity, but nothing droolworthy. You’d hope that since Takamure-san is first a BL mangaka, she would have been better at illustrating the gay characters in the story and their romantic relationship… But no, they are even duller than the main characters. This is hopeless!
Several other mangas of this batch have irritated me but not to the same level. And fortunately, there are also a few others — Risky Business, Getting Even for instance — that I really enjoyed and hope to see translated soon. Among the non-Harlequin mangas, I wish some scanlator would pick one of these: Endings and Beginnings, Intruder’s Kiss, Fallen Angel, Mr Deeds Goes to Town, Sheikh to Shakunetsu no Sapphire. I’m especially curious about Sheikh to Shakunetsu no Sapphire. The art is beautifully consistent — the kind I imagine would make a gorgeous high quality anime because the faces are attractive and you feel the movements of supple bodies, you sense the characters breathing and living — and the story looks intriguing and passion-filled.