The Moon and the Sandals vol. 1
Author/Artist: Fumi Yoshinaga
Rating: M – 18 and up
Genre: Yaoi, Drama, Romance, Slice of Life
Koichi Kobayashi has a crush on his World History teacher. It's normal for high school students to crush on their teachers but in the case for Kobayashi his teacher is male. Kobayashi is a very tall and handsome young man but looks intimidating so Mr. Ida (the World History teacher) doesn't know what to think when he's being "glared" at (according to Kobayashi he's "gazing"). Kobayashi wants to confess his feelings to his teacher but doesn't know how to go about it. He tracks down where Ida lives and finds him kissing some man. Ida is confused about his relationship with Hashizume and confides in Kobayashi. Getting his hopes up, Kobayashi thinks there might be a chance until Hashizume shows up and announces that he wants to live together with Ida. It looks like Kobayashi is going to have to accept this fate with grace.
Ida and Hashizume have been together for quite some time so Kobayashi moves on and ends up falling for his English tutor. He and a girl in his class, Naru-chan, are very good friends and Naru-chan usually helps him out with his studies. After an accident, she is hospitalized and has her older brother Toyo tutor him. In exchange Kobayashi has to make Toyo's lunch. Toyo is a huge, imposing, and aloof person but also very intelligent. He's also the sole member of the school's Mountaineering Club. Kobayashi and Giant (the nickname Kobayashi gave Toyo) don't get along at all. But as time moves forward the two become close friends and soon Toyo reluctantly enters into a relationship with Kobayashi. There is a problem though. It turns out that Naru-chan has fallen for Kobayashi.
The Moon and the Sandals follow these two couples in both ups and downs. The idea was interesting enough. You root for a relationship to blossom between Kobayashi and Ida but because things in life aren't all rainbows and gumdrops (why I channeled that line I have no idea) things work out differently. I can say that this wasn't too bad of a read. I only paid a fraction of the cost from the original price thanks to a huge mega mondo sale at Yaoi Club. Were it not for the low price I wouldn't have bought this title. It was somewhat enjoyable but it is a title that I'm only going to read once. The way that these characters interact with one another is interesting but can be tiresome in some places. The relationship between Kobayashi and Giant seems to be a little one sided and a bit unrealistic. But it's yaoi so it's always unrealistic.
The art is Yoshinaga-sensei's typical style so you know who created it. The story was interesting enough to keep me hooked to the end and to move on to the sequel, but it's not enough to convince me to read it over and over like some of Yoshinaga-sensei's other works. She has a large fan base and with some of the other titles I can kind of see why. But if you've read any of my other reviews for sensei's titles you'll know that I'm not a huge fan. What sensei lacks in art the story telling is what draws me in. I know that there are people who probably wish for my demise because of my stand but we are entitled to our own opinions, no?
If you like Yoshinaga-sensei chances are you'll love this title. But from my point of view read it if you want, but if you choose to not read it you aren't missing a whole lot.
***Review Copy purchased through Yaoi Club***