This manga, Boku ha Onna no Ko, i.e., I am a Girl (where the “I” is a boy’s form) is…okay. I have seen this many, many, many times on “Yuri Manga” lists in Japanese. I’ve never really been tempted to buy it, but on my last night in Tokyo I was going crazy and throwing money around Comic Tora no Ana like I was a millionaire. So I got it.
Boku is a collection of short stories by Shimura Takako, that are all very “eh.” The first story – the title story, “Boku ha Onna no Ko,” seems to be about a boy who fell into a several-months long sleep and, upon waking, finds that she is now a girl. Even as a Kafka-esque piece, this story seemed forced to me. We get most of the Greek Chorus commentary from an older brother with a girl’s name – can’t remember it at the moment. Nothing happens, except we get to see her naked and confirm that yes, she is a girl, and um, the kids in school all want to know what it feels like. Tomorrow she will go out and buy dressses. The end.
The middle stories made absolutely *no* impression on me and I cannot recall any of them.
The final story had the most personality. In “Sweet 16 – Hina,” a young, very boyish girl named Hina falls in love with her (I think) music teacher, a woman. The teacher, in a very emotional scene, both acknolwedges and regretfully rejects Hina’s feelings, but it wasn’t nasty in any way – the teacher is in love with a man and is suffering a bit for her own love. The story is mostly a coming of age type thing, very mild and a little bittersweet. But nothing really happens.
I was not whelmed by this book, either over- or under-. It is gone from my collection now and after I upload this review, I will simply forget it.
Art – 6
Stories – 5
Characters – 5
Yuri – 6
Overall – a bland, uninteresting 5. There’s worse, but there’s better, too.