Direction: Right to Left
by: Kaoru Tada
Publisher: Digital Manga Publishing
Genre: Shojo, Drama, Romance
High school senior Kotoko Aihara has had a crush on Naoki Irie since freshman year. Unfortunately, there a few things are discouraging her from to him: he’s a member of "Class A," the top ranking class in school, whereas she’s in "Class F"; he gets the top score on every exam; and he’s so smart, popular and handsome that he’s been class president every year. When Kotoko finally musters up the courage to present him with a love letter, though, Naoki outright refuses it, telling her point blank–with a look of disgust and boredom—that he doesn’t like "stupid girls." Poor Kotoko’s worst nightmare! Her heart is broken, but then a change in circumstance forces Naoki and Kotoko to be together every day…!?
Kotoko Aihara is the heroine of the series, she’s not the brightest bulb in the pack. But what she lacks in smarts she makes up for in determination and her happy go lucky personality. As a character she’s well developed, personality wise, and while she does grow over the three volumes she starts off well rounded.
Naoki Irie is the complete reverse of Kotoko, he’s one of the smartest students in Japan, but also a rather apathetic person who has closed himself off. This does cause some problems for Tada, trying to bring out his personality well is very hard due to his cold nature. If it’s done wrong we’d have a character that just didn’t work. Thankfully Tada pulls it off perfectly.
Sahoko Ooizumi is introduced this volume, she’s the perfect house wife, skilled at cooking and house chores, but doesn’t really think much of anything else. She seems to have been raised to be the perfect wife. She seems to be intelligent and almost a match for Naoki.
When i first started this volume i found myself getting bored. Nothing really changed from the previous volumes. Their relationship was the same, as was the family.
As i continued to read i found myself longing for something to shake up the series. We are five volumes into the series, it needed to move forwards otherwise it would just get stagnant.
As the volume progressed there were a few moments of interesting things, and one of the girls was shot down, it was an interesting end to things. But without her on the scene anymore i was wondering how the momentum would be maintained.
It wasn’t long after this point that i was on the verge of giving up on the volume for the night. However the interesting stuff came along and i kept reading. Towards the end of the volume the story takes an interesting set of turns. with Naoki who had finally started to follow his dreams faced with a hard choice.
Then we get his second choice which threatens to split his family. With the arrival of Sahoko, a potential bride of Naoki’s own choosing, Kotoko finds herself facing the reality that she may have lost Naoki. Just when she thinks it can’t get any worse Kin-chan proposes to her, and her father suggests they leave the Irie household.
The end of the volume was absolutely amazing, and manages to reignite my flagging interest in the series. I’m hoping the next volume will have some interesting character developments.