Saturday, May 26, 2012

New Shoujo - Backlight by Makoto Tateno

With his parents constantly fighting and his future uncertain, Suguru spends his high school days in discontent. He envies the carefree lifestyle of his friend Tomohiro, who lives alone and untethered, but even Tomohiro has his dark secrets. One summer night, the hidden passions and desperate desires of three teenagers threaten to change their worlds… permanently.
This elusive collection contains four stories by the acclaimed Makoto Tateno, author and artist of the popular series Yellow, Red Angel, and Blue Sheep Reverie!

Backlight is being filed as a shoujo, but I have to say this is one of the most genre-less books I've ever read. Yes, it tends more towards shoujo than shounen, but I would say that's largely due to the style of drawing rather than content. The stories are a bit dark as well. Also, as Tateno states in one of her author notes, "I love love-triangles with two men and one woman," so there are definite BL undertones in two of the stories.

There are three main stories: the one in the cover copy, a murder mystery, and a futuristic sci-fi that's also kind of mystery-ish. The futuristic story has an extra short chapter, too.

There's absolutely no smut.

You have a tendency to lose objectivity after working on a title and staring at it for inordinately long periods. I remember initially being impressed with the story telling despite the 80's style characters, and usually dated art styles turn me off. Then, my frustration at strangely-joined speech bubbles got the best of me :P  Any still-objective folk who would like to review this title can contact me (info at bottom of page) for a free review copy on eManga. Just send a link of your website or blog or your reviewer page on Amazon or BN.

You can find Backlight on Amazon, BN, and eManga.

Translator for this special assignment was Duane Johnson. Editing and lettering were by Mia.


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