Read 東京バ娘 1 [Tokyo Tarareba Musume 1] by Akiko Higashimura Free Online
Book Title: 東京バ娘 1 [Tokyo Tarareba Musume 1]|
The author of the book: Akiko Higashimura
Date of issue: September 12th 2014
ISBN 13: 9784063409352
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 688 KB
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Reader ratings: 7.7
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I stopped reading shoujo manga a long time ago, save for a few titles that do not focus on high school romance (ex: Natsume's Book of Friends, Kaze Hikaru, etc.) Nowadays, I go for josei, which... is a bit of a weird genre. It encompasses whatever you graduate to after shoujo (read: young girl) manga. Yes, that means some of it is Fifty Shades of Grey stuff, and some of it is just better written stories with adult protagonists aimed at an older audience. In case you're wondering, this manga falls in the latter category.
Akiko Higashimura is a master of adult stories that hit a little too close too home when it comes to that feeling of uncertainty in new adulthood. As in her other big hit (Princess Jellyfish), Higashimura uses "Tokyo Tarareba Girls" to tackle themes like female adulthood and uncertainty in the face of societal expectations. Should women at age 30 be beautiful? Successful? Married? Should they have settled for something they didn't feel totally comfortable with in order to achieve these goals set by society? Do society's goals even matter? Is it childish to expect that golden standard--the happily-ever-after love story? Does love exist?
Higashimura knows how to write a story that packs real emotional punch without falling into melodrama. Her characters swing between telling themselves "hey, I decide what's best for me, not society!" and "I don't want to die alone, what if I should have dated that guy five years ago and what if I'm watching my life go by without doing anything about it?" And those are all real reactions, regardless of the role you're expected to fill in society (adjust as needed, of course).
I can't say whether the story contains any wish fulfillment yet, though there is some playful self-awareness where the main character is called out for writing a story where a younger, beautiful man falls in love with a 30-something-year-old woman... only for the main character to be propositioned by a *drumroll* younger, beautiful man. The only difference lies in that there is no love in this proposition. Not yet, anyway. It's about changing one's outlook, or rather, adopting an approach to life devoid of emotion where sexual activity is concerned. That's why I'm not sure if Higashimura will devolve into wish fulfillment (though she has no such wishes to fulfill, based on her own account of her life) or if she will develop this strange, kind of unhealthy beginning into a well-written and engaging story arc for her lost protagonist. If Higashimura's prior work is anything to go by, wish fulfillment is not on the menu, but raw, human realities are up for grabs.
I trust Higashimura to do her work justice. Recommended for anyone, regardless of prior manga-reading experience.
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Read information about the authorSee also 東村 アキコ
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