Manga-ka: Tokiya Shimazaki
Rating: Mature (18+)
Released: July 2008
Synopsis: “When a little fun between the sheets gets a bit too rough, Mizuki ends up breaking Azuma’s glasses. Azuma has an incurable eye disease and his glasses need to be made to exact specifications. Mizuki, being the compassionate uke that he is, tries to make Azuma as comfortable as possible until his glasses are fixed. Of course, Azuma’s most comfortable between Mizuki’s legs with Mizuki flat on his back!! And what is the name of that incurable eye disease, anyway?”
It’s more of the same shenanigans here in volume five of Love is Like A Hurricane. The stories remain pretty episodic, continuing to offer lots of weird and funny situations from the kinky to the cute (and all sex-filled for your entertainment of course). In this volume, the opening chapter takes readers back a couple years in the school life of its characters while the rest of book continues with Mizuki and Azuma sex-capades, including sunburns, tutors and sex in a shrine.
While the overall concept hasn’t so much worn itself out (there isn’t much of a concept to begin with), it seems the manga-ka might’ve. I didn’t find the short plots here very original nor the execution of them very interesting compared to previous volumes. I had to reread the first chapter a few times to follow what exactly was going on, something I’ve never had a problem with before now due to generally linear-styled story telling.
The chapter I enjoyed most in this book involved a new just-for-that-story character: a classmate of Mizuki’s sister who agrees to tutor Mizuki. During their first lesson, Mizuki suddenly finds himself flushed and embarrassed by the kind and attractive older guy. But how could he with the sexual-perverse and borderline rapist Azuma around to love him? As much as I’ve enjoyed the amusing random-situations-for-the-sake-of-sex style of this series, a little bit of consideration for other feelings felt a little refreshing. Mizuki being attracted to another human being? Shocker. Too bad this short story swerved itself around at the last minute and spoiled any semblance of human believability of a world outside Mizuki and Azuma’s lovemaking.
Tokiya Shimazaki’s artwork also left me a little sad in this book. While the same cute characteristics of the style remain, some images looked awkwardly disproportionate and inconsistent, especially when compared to earlier volumes. Even the image on the book’s back cover looked really off to me when I first picked it up. Maybe I’m being overly picky but compared the first four volumes, this fifth one just didn’t hold up visually.
From the publishing side of things, it’s generally the same from 801Media with a nice cover slip, full colour artwork included in the interior and an overall nicely done translation job. Admittedly I found the wording to be a tad cumbersome at points and reread a few spots while going over in my head some more simple and smooth ways a simple line could’ve been written.
And so, in sad conclusion, volume five was definitely a disappointing way to end an otherwise entertaining series. The story felt choppy, the artwork looked rather lazy and even 801Media’s translation work had a few bumps. If you’re a big fan of the series, I suppose it’s worth having to complete the collection but this was unfortunately a lack-lustre end to Love is Like A Hurricane.