Aya Nakahara won the 2003 Shogakukan Manga Award for her breakthrough hit Love*Com, which was made into a major motion picture and a PS2 game in 2006. She debuted with Haru to Kuuki to Nichiyou bi, and her other work is Himitsu kichi.
In this winning shojo manga, despite the aggravated barbs that Risa Koizumi (tallest girl in her high school class) always traded with Atsushi Otani (shortest boy in same), somehow Risa fell in love with him (see the review of Vol. 4, LJ 5/15/08). Eventually, despite deep embarrassment at showing his feelings, Otani returned her love, and their relationship has emerged from trials stronger and more secure. With that major point resolved, Nakahara has begun to make changes to keep the series thriving. Here, she turns the spotlight onto the appealing supporting cast, as Risa's best friend Nobu must decide whether to move to Hokkaido to help her ailing grandmother or stay in Osaka with her boyfriend Nakao. But a larger change has the cast about to graduate and thinking about the future. Despite his uniformly poor grades, Atsushi is determined to attend college and crams hard for entrance exams. Risa, who has equally poor marks, is clueless about what to do with her life besides be with Otani. With cute-but-not-cutesy artwork and laugh-out-loud comedy leavening its sentimentality, this is one teen girls' romance that can appeal to boys and adults as well; strongly recommended.-S.R. Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.