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Ritsuka Uenoyama is bored with it all—with school, with his basketball club, and even with his one true passion: playing guitar. That is, until the day he finds his favorite hidden napping spot occupied by a strange boy cradling a broken-stringed guitar. At first, Uenoyama is nonplussed by Mafuyu Sato and his slightly odd behavior, but when, on a whim, he asks Mafuyu to sing, the power of that song pierces him to the core.
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One of the most popular BL series right now for good reason. Interesting characters, emotional storytelling, expressive art. There’s a lot to like here, but what I like most is the mix of ages and romantic experiences in the cast. Not many BL have a scene where a guy realizing his attraction to guys actually talks to a guy friend/mentor who is also attracted to guys and gets affirmation. I also really enjoy the non-romantic storyline about starting up a band, which gets I’d say equal attention as the romance.
While grief plays a big role in the story, I don’t think it’s a depressing series at all. It’s mostly about learning how to keep living after a loss. Still, if you are sensitive to content dealing with suicide/loss of a loved one, approach this carefully.
While I think the (great) anime is the better way to experience this since music plays such a big role, the manga is also well worth reading. The pace is a bit faster, and the story goes far beyond what the anime covers. The manga also has some extra content that’s missing from the anime.
Like most likely everyone, I picked up the manga after seeing the anime. Even though the adaptation was amazing, it doesn’t feel like a chore to re-read what you have seen unlike some manga.
The sprinkling of hindsight is everywhere and made me nearly cry just even on the first page. That is a merit to just how well planned out everything is with all the characters and thier stories.
One thing that stood out the most to me was the pacing. It never really felt like anything unnecessary was said and more often that not the characters actions and expressions spoke louder than words. Grief, jealousy, anger, joy, everything is always conveyed perfectly by the characters especially in thier expressions. If it wasn’t given the space it needed with less text,
key moments would be nowhere near as impactful. It manages to make the comedic moments funnier and the serious moments hit harder.
It does mean however its a slow burn. Feelings even resembling love are only just starting to think about raising its head after one volume. That is quite unusual for a BL, but everything about Mafuyu being drip fed to us doesn’t feel unnatural or drawn out either. I am here for the drama and feels but people wanting a romance centric story would be disappointed.