This manga was kindly provided for review by Yen Press
About the Mangaka
Have to admit, until now I’ve never heard of Okada Kazuto. He (or she lol) however seems to have been rather successful. Sundome is their second work, the first being Kyōkasho ni Nai!, which ran for eighteen volumes and had an anime OVA; which was licensed and released by Media Blasters. Sundome has proven equally as popular, having a live action movie adaptation released in late November 2007. Currently, it’s only up to volume four in Japan
About the Manga
I was hoping for this series to improve in the second volume, but sadly it hasn’t, not really.. Oddly, the good part of this series is also it’s stumbling block. The art is horrid for the most part, except when it comes to drawing the girls.
When it comes to the female aspects of the art Okada spends a huge amount of time on it. Sadly the male characters, even the lead, seem to really be after thoughts with only a small amount of work going into it.
This is a shame really, since if he’d (or she’d, still none the wiser on this front) spent more time on the art, this is a series that could have made it on my Essential Read list.
The story is the saving grace of the manga, Okada caries on writing an interesting story with Kurumi-chan tormenting Aiba. One of the best points of the volume for me was when she tells him she used to be a boy. Aiba has a coronary, freaks out and runs away, We get to see him freaking out all over the place, before he decides he doesn’t care he still loves her (him). Only to find out she was teasing him yet again.
However I have to admit that I probably wouldn’t of kept on reading the series if it wasn’t for the ‘OB’ returning and more hints into Kurumi. Though we don’t get anything revealed, there are hints at something either dark or sinister (or both) in her past. To explain her warped sense of humour, and the reason as to why she lives alone, and is ill so often.
Without this I think the story would of failed, as it’d be just another ecchi fest with no story. While I like my ecchi fest’s as much as the next guy, I also require them to have a story I can get into and to keep me interested.
Hopefully, this will start to become more apparent as the series continues.
As I’ve come to expect from Yen theirs is a high quality release. A thick and glossy cover with a ‘Parental Warning’ logo (cause lets face it, this series is pushing the boundaries of manga and hentai to see how far it can go hehe)
Inside we have a full colour Kurumi-chan picture, the paper quality is great, though it seems they’ve stopped using the paper they used in the With the Light and early Spiral volumes. While the paper is still better than anything else being used in manga, it lacks the shine of the afore mentioned volumes.
Christine Schilling returns as the translator, and once again she does an outstanding job of it. She’s fast becoming my favourite translator. She treats the script with the respect it deserves, and doesn’t treat those who are going to read her translations as though they’re three year olds. I’ve noticed she works a great deal with Yen, and this is awesome, I hope she works with them for a long time to come!!
There’s no extras to speak of, but as in the previous volume there’s a translators note page, listing the notes on terms and comments from the volumes.
There’s also a sneak peaks of volume three, though this is Japanese. Going from what it looks like, volume three is going to have some interesting stuff going on. The down side is we have to wait four months to get the next volume!!
Where to buy
Unfortunately I can’t give the usual Waterstones link for this volume. Due to a printing error May’s releases were delayed, as such no UK supplier have copies yet, though they’re on their way. You can however get it from the Book Depository who source their manga from the states directly.