Volume three certainly has stepped up on the laughs. There is a lot less painful angst this time around, and what there is has an unexpected levity to it. I particularly like the dry wit of Ono's as he recalls his love affair with Jean Baptiste, likening it to a French film. This is very much Ono and Chikage's volume, as we get to explore their characters past and present, inside and out, in much the same way as we did with Tachibana and Kanda in the first two volumes. It rounds things out nicely, with the additional side characters we meet carrying along the overall story arc without faltering. As always, Yoshinaga's art is interesting. She has a singular signature style that can take a bit of getting sued to, but it is far from ugly. What really arrests my is the way she does the eyes. Wonderfully expressive, and the way they are lidded and inset are truly unique. I dare say one could identify a drawing of hers if only the top half of a face, with eyes in full view, was shown. Her storytelling runs as smoothly as ever, with her plot threads weaving in and out as chaotically as real life but with definite cohesion. The result is a humourously wry slice of life manga that has one looking forward to the next instalment. in the meantime, the scratch and sniff cover is quite nice.
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