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The Journal of the Lincoln Heights Literary Society
Miscellanea and Ephemeron

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06/02/2008 Archived Entry: "Yaoi review: Blue Sky"

Blue Sky
Story and art by Yuko Kuwabara
Published by Juné, imprint of Digital Manga, Inc.
ISBN-10: 1569707197
ISBN-13: 9781569707197

Review by Jilly Gee

There are two princes at the all-boys dormitory, Seiran, for Seika Academy: Ryoichiro Kihara, the Prince of Warm Spring Sunshine and Kyosuke Yoshimi, the Beautiful Prince of Ice. Of course, these nicknames can only convey one side of their personalities. Contrary to his Prince of Warm Spring Sunshine moniker, Kihara, also Chief Resident Advisor of the dorm, schemes to get Yoshimi as his roommate, to take advantage of a prophecy that says the Chief R. A. always has a romantic relationship with his roommate.

Thankfully, this doesn't drag on into one of those stories where the only obstacle in the way of True Love is miscommunication; you know, the kind that makes you tear your hair out because you know that they could have been happy five chapters ago if only they had said that one thing. Kihara is straightforward and honest when it comes to telling Yoshimi how he feels, instead of continuing the manipulation that got him his roommate. However, this only confuses Yoshimi, who is the kind of person that doesn't know how he feels until someone points it out for him. Once he realizes, though, he decidedly takes action, ending this sugary sweet story. At about half the length of the graphic novel, this seems the perfect amount of pages dedicated to them.

The second half of Blue Sky deals with the rest of the boys in Kihara and Yoshimi's dorm lives, starting with a hilarious story that begins from the point of view of Nikaido, who is probably the only straight guy in the whole story. Are Kihara and Yoshimi a couple? If they are a couple, have they done it? Overactive imaginations lead to him and the others envisioning things they would really rather not and poking their noses where they shouldn't.

While the title couple was all about sweet, innocent, boyish love, the next major couple walk an intense and angsty road. Starting with hot and sweaty action right off the bat, Hajime Hino, the school physician, analyzes his relationship with Shunichi Yoshimi. Yes, Yoshimi; Shunichi is the older brother of the Beautiful Prince of Ice. Shunichi was the former Chief R. A. and used the prophecy to his advantage, although in a rather different way than Kihara. Overwhelmed by his former pupil's intensity, the easily swayed Hino enters this relationship, but questions it as the months. He may have fallen in love with Shunichi, but does Shunichi really love him? After all, he talks of nothing but his little brother and how alike Hino is to that brother; is he just a replacement?

To round out the two couples from far sides of the spectrum, there is the couple in between. Kaga is still suffering from his unrequited love for Yoshimi, but his roommate, Suzuki, is always there to comfort him. Of course, this being boys love, cute little Suzuki has ulterior motives that the obtuse Kaga can't see. Unfortunately, Suzuki's over-dramatic, outlandish fantasies never come true, causing him to take a more direct approach after Kaga's friendly concern becomes too much to bear.

Blue Sky doesn't plumb the depths of their characters, but it digs just deep enough for readers to understand and enjoy the characters' romantic motivations. What it lacks in character background, it makes up for in its variety of couples: the lovey dovey couple, the hot and steamy couple, and the almost-couple, not to mention the straight friend looking in.

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