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The Journal of the Lincoln Heights Literary Society
Miscellanea and Ephemeron

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12/14/2004 Archived Entry: "Manga review: Sensual Phrase Vol. 5"

Sensual Phrase #5
by Mayu Shinjo
Publisher: Viz

Review by Tom Good

Aine, a high school girl, is in love with her pop star schoolmate Sakuya, who is in a band called "Lucifer." But Tomoyuki, another pop star from the group "Jesus" also has designs on Aine, and he is not above using a little hypnosis to get his way.

In this story, every character's hair flows and drapes so beautifully that at times it seems like a shampoo commercial that forgot to mention the product, and instead evolved a complex plot. This plot is pretty standard fare for a romance manga, and the characters are likewise drawn with an elegant and attractive style. Translator Joe Yamazaki succeeded in turning the dialogue into contemporary, idiomatic English that never feels forced, even when characters use expressions like "whassup" or "no worries."

Perhaps the most striking thing about Sensual Phrase is all of the abstract backgrounds. Often characters appear against plain white backgrounds or abstract textures rather than in realistic environments. This gives the story a dreamlike quality and emphasizes the characters' emotions rather than their surroundings. Almost every page features some new type of shape or texture, and sometimes these appear superimposed on the characters. This style works very well with the subject matter.

Sensual Phrase is rated M for Mature. It contains a few sexual situations that are not very graphic, and some profanity. Basically it is a sweet, cute story, more so than the M rating might imply. Recommended for romance fans.

Replies: 2 comments

I love Sensual Phrase and all my other friends do too! i give it more than 100+

Posted by Emily @ 05/25/2005 04:10 PM PST

We love the manga sensual phrase!!! What's the last volume and what happens??? We're just new to this manga...

Posted by Kira & Lil @ 06/28/2005 10:38 PM PST

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