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Venus in Love, Volume 4

Review

Venus in Love, Volume 4

This fun shōjo manga series features Suzuna Ashihara, a college freshman. Suzuna is sorting through her feelings for neighbor and friend Eichi Uozumi, while at the same time he is sorting through his for her. They are both trying to figure out how they feel about the gorgeous and arrogant Yuki Ikeuchi, neighbor and part-time model. Previous volumes had Suzuna and Eichi in a triangle with Shinya Fukami, but as Fukami developed a relationship, now Yuki complicates things.

Nakaji, also author of the wacky Zig*Zag series, knows how to add surprising plot lines and twists. Several minor characters in this volume add to the fun. First, Eichi’s brother, Tomoki, won’t go home as he doesn’t want to tell his father he wants to be a hairdresser. Suzuna has Tomoki do her hair, catching the attention of the boys, and giving him the confidence he needs to face his father.

Hinako Kaji, friend of Eichi since high school and now friend of Fukami and Suzuna, is still in love with her Greek professor, Mr. Hokari. When her mother tries instead to arrange a marriage for her, Hokari decides it is time for them to state openly how they feel about each other.

Suzuna is sweet and klutzy, and a tennis match among the characters is particularly funny. She tries to understand her growing feelings for Eichi, while the beautiful Yuki also gets closer to him. Even Fukami gets more mature in this volume, and all relationships move forward. When Yuki has to dress as a beautiful woman in a school show, Suzuna and Eichi agree to go on a date to the after-concert, but unfortunately circumstances, and a little girl in need of help, keep Suzuna from arriving on time.

There is plenty of humor and culture in this series, and the drawings of the characters as their younger selves fighting their feelings adds another dimension to the story of young people trying to be adults. While readers will root for Suzuna and Eichi, the other characters are likeable too, and readers will want to see them happy as well. The asides and cultural notes bring this manga to a high-quality level. This is appropriate and fun for teens aged 13-plus.

Reviewed by Amy Alessio on September 2, 2008

Venus in Love, Volume 4
by Yuki Nakaji

  • Publication Date: September 2, 2008
  • Genres: Manga
  • Paperback: 200 pages
  • Publisher: CMX
  • ISBN-10: 140121780X
  • ISBN-13: 9781401217808