Ai yori Aoshi Vol. #11 -

Anime/Manga Reviews

Mania Grade: B

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  • Art Rating: A
  • Packaging Rating: A-
  • Text/Translatin Rating: B+
  • Age Rating: 13 & Up
  • Released By: TOKYOPOP
  • MSRP: 9.99
  • Pages: 196
  • ISBN: 1-59532-374-0
  • Size: B6
  • Orientation: Right to Left

Ai yori Aoshi Vol. #11

By Chris Beveridge     May 10, 2006
Release Date: December 13, 2005

Ai yori Aoshi Vol.#11

Creative Talent
Writer/Artist:Kou Fumizuki
Translated by:Alethea and Athena Nibley
Adapted by:

What They Say
Despite her family's protests, Aoi Sakuraba decides that she is going to marry Kaoru Hanabishi, her love of eighteen years. Once he realizes that she's not working for his family, trying to get him to go back to them, he decides it's a good idea as well. What obstacles must the two overcome in order to be together?

The Review
Moving at last beyond stories that made it into the original and Enishi series, Aoi Yori Aoshi also moves into an area where some amount of closure is bound to happen. Things are moving behind the scenes about how the relationship between Ai and Kaoru has been progressing and the Sakuraba's are reaching their limit on how long they'll allow Aoi to do what she's doing before the interests of the family itself becomes the priority. Miyabi is painfully aware of what's involved and with her having come to understand and respect Kaoru and the way he's treated Aoi she's really reluctant to tell him about the time limit that's in place which will result in the place being destroyed. Not only that but that he really must try to reconcile with the Hanabishi's in order to make things right.

Kaoru of course keeps all of this to himself as he decides that he has to confront his past so he and Aoi can move on to their future. His trip back home is one that provides for a look at how things have changed, far too briefly for my taste, in the family since he left. Like a lot of children who return home after being away for some time, it's not what he remembered in a lot of ways and what's changed is startling, to the point of wondering why he didn't confront all of this sooner. It works to set up some of what the real challenge will be though and there's certainly more to explore. The trip also doubles for giving Tina a chance to sneak off to get more time with Kaoru as her own time limit was recently set and she's intent on filling the time with as many memories as possible with him. At this point I'm sure she knows she's lost him to Aoi though she may not recognize it so while there's temptation in front of her, she's finding the will inside to resist it.

What continues to really make me love this book in addition to the smooth script and enjoyable storyline is that the artwork is gorgeous and it's a book where they use a lot of nicely detailed backgrounds instead of just action effects and lots of blank space. The characters really feel like they're inside their world. This volume does delve unfortunately into some less than pleasant fanservice as a short chapter deals with Chika getting her first bra but the payoff of having the "DS Version" of the show being played by the characters as an extra is worth the price of admission alone.


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