Last December, I reviewed Volume 1 of Sugawa Tokushi’s Zenryaku, Yuri no Sono Yori. I never honestly expected we’d be discussing it once again. Earlier this month, Tsubomi discontinued publishing comics online, and their series have been absorbed by the Mangatime Kirara family of magazines. Some of the series will continue at least into 2014.
But in the meantime, we have a few series that began in Tsubomi that are wrapping up now – among them, this one. Volume 1 was more of a collection of mini-series, but Volume 2 sticks with the titular series.
Yuri is one-quarter foreign, so she has blonde hair, and she is a loner and little prickly, so she has no friends in school. Fujiwara is the Nadesico beauty type who breaks through Yuri’s defenses – ostensibly to help the other girl make friends. But, as we see the story from Fujiwara’s point of view this time, there is way more than just being nice on her side. Fujiwara is attracted to Yuri. Once she breaks the ice for Yuri to make new friends, she feels cut off from the other girl and reacts by putting more distance between them. Yuri realizes that she has more friends – but they aren’t Fujiwara. After some minor emotional conflict, they finally break past the wall they’ve built between them and admit they “like” like one another. The ending looks rosy – especially with the addition of a few very light-hearted gags in the extra chapters.
Another extra chapter turns to Shinobu, Yuri’s only friend – and the woman who writes the BL manga Yuri draws. Shinobu is able to see the result of Yuri’s and Fujiwara’s make-up and is inspired to write a Yuri manga, called…”Zenryaku, Yuri no Sono Yori.” Obviously. ^_^ Another extra was the utterly absurd and very cute meeting of Fujiwara, Yuri and Shinobu and her girlfriend, the admiring underclassman from the first volume.
Here’s the thing. I read this book in one sitting. It may not sound compelling, but it was actually a real page turner. Sat down last night late for some before-bed reading and the next thing I knew – I was done. That almost never happens. So while it was another “Story A”, another girl meets girl, girl likes girl, they like each other, the end book – it grabbed me and ran. For that alone I’d give it a good score.
But…I don’t have to do that for that alone. The final omake shows Yuri at home, drawing a manuscript and chopping vegetables, while Fujiwara is at college, then wraps up her classwork and heads home. The final page of the volume shows Yuri opening the door to Fujiwara.
“I’m home, Yuri” says Fujiwara.
“Welcome home, Misono,” Yuri replies.
Art – So many inconsistencies, Sugawa’s got a long way to go. Sometimes pages look more like a doujinshi than a professionally published work – Variable, from 5-8
Story – 9
Characters – 8
Yuri – 9
Service – 1
Overall – 9
There is a girl, she likes another girl. The other girl likes her back. They like each other. And they live happily ever after. The end.