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Ontology on the gone!

The Journal of the Lincoln Heights Literary Society
Miscellanea and Ephemeron

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05/05/2008 Archived Entry: "Yaoi review: Happiness Recommended"

Happiness Recommended
Story and Art: Souya Himawari
Published by Juné, imprint of Digital Manga, Inc.
ISBN-10: 1-56970-742-1
ISBN-13: 978-1-56970-742-5

Review by Linda Yau

As most BL stories go, Happiness Recommended was an entertaining fast read with a sweet heartwarming story -two main chapters and a bonus story. To recap the main story, Yukiharu Hiraga believes that he is an orphan after his grandfather suddenly passed away. This is not the case when he learned that he has six younger brothers. They were separated when Yukiharu was three and his grandfather had disowned both his parents.

When he was reunited with his brothers, Yukiharu finds out around five things.

1: His parents have abandoned the family and left.
2: His brothers live in impoverished hut with everyone scrimping and saving.
3: Some of his brothers do not want him there.
4: Yukiharu has someone waiting for him, Makoto Otonari.
5: He does not remember anything about Makoto or when he was three.

When Yukiharu shows up, Makoto immediately latches onto him, leading Yukiharu to call him a hug fiend. The bonus story had me chuckling, when Yukiharu went on his first day to school and everyone mistook him for being a twin to his younger brother. Still it was in the bonus, where I learned of where Makoto started to hug people the way he does. There were many instances where there is an Asian cultural difference that was being displayed here. Asian cultures are pretty reserved with showing public displays of affections.

I would not mind seeing a follow up to this story, because the bonus story certainly left openings for a continuation. The last panel had Yukiharu pissed off and warning Makoto to stay away from him. What kind of an ending is that?

On a side note there is another short story titled Another Rainy Day about a struggling writer, Yoshimi whose girlfriend dumped him for turning away from his dreams. He gets into an accident with Takeda, the guy who his ex-girlfriend said that she likes. However, it was learned by the ending of the story that Takeda had fallen in love with him and not the girlfriend.

An interesting note is the recent trend I have seen with June Manga releasing translations of graphic novels with mangaka's using glasses on their characters like Hot Steamy Glasses by Tatsumi Kaiya or Love Lesson by Hanae Sakazaki to list a few.

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