Monday, December 14, 2009

Hey, Sensei? by Yaya Sakuragi review

Hey, Sensei?

Author/Artist: Yaya Sakuragi

Publisher: Juné

Rating: M – 18 and above

Genre: Yaoi, Comedy, Drama, Romance

Grade: B

*** Review originally appeared at The Journal of the Lincoln Heights Literary Society at Check it out! ***

Written in the corner of a test Tomohiko Isa catches the note "I love you, Sensei" from one of his students. Isa is a stoic high school math teacher. The surprise comes from who left the note, male student Takashi Homura. Homura happens to be the younger brother of his college girlfriend. It was in this relationship that Isa discovered that he was gay and he figured that Homura was using this as a way to get back at him. Bombarded by Homura’s constant sexual attacks he discovers that Homura’s love confession was in fact real and had no idea that Isa was gay.

Isa doesn’t have a lot of experience with matters of love and struggles with the fact he’s falling for his student who is ten years his junior. Homura on the other hand wants to appear to be grown up and be a suitable partner for his lover. Isa reluctantly agrees to start a relationship with Homura. Homura, being the youthful soul that he is, is ready and raring to go whereas Isa, being a responsible adult, wants to take things slowly. Will these two be able to overcome their obstacles and truly love each other?

You may recognize the work of Yaya Sakuragi-sensei. She is the artist behind BLU’s Tea for Two which is a great read all in itself. Because I’ve been enjoying that series I was really looking forward to Hey, Sensei? and I wasn’t disappointed either. It is a very sweet story with humor and romance and dealt with very human emotions. I found it very endearing that these two were both trying very hard to impress each other. Isa was constantly reminding Homura of their age difference and Homura was always trying to act older than he really is. It seemed that as soon as they admitted to themselves that it was ok to be who they really are their relationship really improved.

One thing I really liked about this release was the art. Sakuragi-sensei creates manly looking men. There are no girly looking ukes in this story. I find myself drawn to characters that are drawn lanky, lean and long. That’s exactly what you get from Sakuragi-sensei sexy, tall, manly characters. Another thing I enjoyed was the short personal comic in the Afterword. It has nothing to do with the story at hand but it gives us a little glimpse into her life. In regards to the physical look of the book it’s typical Juné. With Sakuragi-sensei the larger size makes it much easier to enjoy her art. But that’s just me.

I really like this title and can see myself reading this on a regular basis. If you like sweet romance, manly looking characters, and the teacher/student scenario doesn’t bother you I recommend this title. For another view be sure to catch April Kimm’s review.

***Review Copy provided by Juné***
***Reposted with permission from The Journal of the Lincoln Heights Literary Society***

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