An "otomen" as defined by this book is "[a] male who has feminine hobbies, skills, or way of thinking." Asuka, the title otomen of this well-drawn comedy, secretly reads shojo manga, makes stuffed animals and prefers caramel macchiatos to coffee. Forbidden by his mother from girlish behavior after his transvestite father abandoned the family, Asuka takes on a very masculine public character. He is nationally ranked at judo, karate and kendo. Asuka's tragedy is somehow hilarious. He falls for Ryo, the nongirly daughter of a manly martial arts instructor who finds Asuka unacceptable as a friend, let alone a potential suitor: "Men don't go in the kitchen!" he bellows. The strange deus ex machina character Junta acts as a catalyst to bring Asuka and Ryo together while enjoying Asuka's elaborate bento lunches. The over-the-top gender stereotyping is ham-handed at times, but reveals interesting insight into what the Japanese consider the most manly and most girly extremes. The strong artwork carries the comedy premise further than the script could alone, and the manga-within-a-manga, Love Chick, is a hilariously accurate parody of typical shojo. Kanno's other manga in translation include the sci-fi series Blank Slate and angel comedy Soul Rescue. (Feb.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Otomen, Volume 1by Aya Kanno
Asuka Masamune is a guy who loves girly things--sewing, knitting, making cute stuffed animals and reading shojo comics. But in a world where boys are expected to act manly, Asuka must hide his beloved hobbies and play the part of a masculine jock instead. Ryo Miyakozuka, on the other hand, is a girl who can't sew or bake a cake to save her life. Asuka finds himself… See more details below
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Asuka Masamune is a guy who loves girly things--sewing, knitting, making cute stuffed animals and reading shojo comics. But in a world where boys are expected to act manly, Asuka must hide his beloved hobbies and play the part of a masculine jock instead. Ryo Miyakozuka, on the other hand, is a girl who can't sew or bake a cake to save her life. Asuka finds himself drawn to Ryo, but she likes only the manliest of men! Can Asuka ever show his true self to anyone, much less to the girl that he's falling for?
Meet the Author
Aya Kanno was born in Tokyo, Japan. She is the creator of Soul Rescue and Blank Slate (originally published as Akusaga in Japan), as well as the New York Times best-selling series Otomen.
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