This may easily be the most entertaining Icarus title released to date! It is definitely the highest art and content grade I have ever given.
Translation: Sebastien Azar
Adaptation: Sebastien Azar
What They Say
Nine stories filled with equal doses of comedy and romance, from our most popular artist in AG. Travel and Love - a new couple wins an island getaway, makes love on the beach. Train Woman - a young man cross-dresses to ride the women-only train, but is surrounded by female molesters.
I love the front and back covers of this book. The girl on the front cover is obviously hot, but the cool thing about the back cover is the high number of characters depicted. Aqua Bless is a collection of short stories and the back cover depicts the girls from each of the different stories together on the beach. It is unique considering most eromanga anthologies show a single character. This is another solid release from Icarus, aside from the lack of color pages. The printing is clean and spot on. Extras consist of a 4-page bonus story that brings all the book’s characters into contact with each other, and a humorous 2-page after word. There is also the Icarus glossary of honorifics and pronunciation guide.
Yamatogawa’s art is freaking awesome. All the female characters are highly varied; even the males receive an equal attention to detail. The only females that could be confused would be the twins, but even they carry themselves differently enough that the reader can tell them apart. The women come in all shapes and sizes with very realistic bodies, no exploding breasts. The author does an excellent job expressing a wide variety of character emotions through their facial expressions. Panel sizes and shapes are varied with plenty of half and full page pictures. Backgrounds are fairly sparse, but highly detailed for an eromanga when present.
The translation reads well and honorifics are prevalent. There are scattered problems with some words in a dialogue sentence being repeated and a few grammar errors. The Japanese SFX remains but lacks an English translation.
Contents: (Oh yes, there may be spoilers)
Aqua Bless collects eight different stories, one of which is a two-part story about twin girls. Each story stands alone, but the last short chapter of this book follows the characters of the first story around an amusement park as they bump into the characters from each of the previous chapters. It is tough to narrow down my synopsis to only three stories, but I guess I liked these three the best.
TELEPAsweet is the opening and closing story in Aqua Bless. It seems the incredibly cute Mari has telepathy. This isn’t the run of the mill telepathy, Mari can sense when people in the surrounding environment are having sex. Any sexual thing happening to a woman within a certain distance is instantly transferred to Mari. She feels the same thing that woman feels, and if she finds herself in the wrong part of town it might feel like she is being groped by a dozen men! As you can imagine, it makes things difficult for her when she could orgasm at any time, no matter what she is doing. Not to mention the fact her panties are usually wet. Forget difficult, can she live through the embarrassment of orgasming in front of the guy she has a crush on?
TWINS is a two-part story about a guy in love with a twin, Tazuna. Only problem is Tazuna ignores Misaki. He doesn’t mind, but it blinds him to the fact that Tazuna’s sister, Katsumi is madly in love with him. Tazuna is a big flirt with her skirt hiked up and always talking to the boys. Katsumi wears glasses and her hair pulled back, so despite looking alike, they are very different people. One day Katsumi decides to impersonate Tazuna and make a move on Misaki. It works out so well that Misaki has sex with her right on the spot.
Katsumi finally has what she wanted; only problem is she has to impersonate her sister. Things work out for a while, but Tazuna eventually catches on. Being spiteful, Tazuna sleeps with Misaki and lets Katsumi catch them. Sibling rivalry anyone? What will Misaki think when he discovers the truth? Whom will he choose? Will the real Tazuna even be interested in him after thwarting her sister? Hmmm, Katsumi is sweeter with larger breasts, I know which I would choose!
DEMON SQUADRON MATENGER is freaking hilarious! Every otaku’s dream is to sleep with his favorite character, or at least a hottie cosplaying as his favorite character. Arisaka is a young, well-endowed, actor waiting for her big chance to debut in a stage play at the amusement park. The play is based on a Power Rangers type show, and it runs everyday at the amusement park. Arisaka’s sempai plays the lead character and is nothing short of awesome as far as she is concerned. When her day finally comes, she receives the revealing costume of an evil queen. She really doesn’t think she could ever play that character on stage. But maybe she can, after her sempai finds her wearing the costume backstage and tries some method acting. Let me just say the whole scene turns into a cross between a porno and an episode of the Power Rangers, and it is surprisingly hot! Bad acting and all.
Great art and fun characters easily make Aqua Bless a must buy for any eromanga fan. Even if you have not tried this genre yet, I cannot think of a better eromanga title to start with. The girls are cute and loveable and the sex, while not kinky, is hot and varied. There are no rape stories, no incest (as long as you don’t count twin girls in a three-way as incest), and half of the sex is between couples in relationships, so nothing that some readers might find offensive.
Tying all the stories together at the end of the book is a great idea and lends the book a sense of interconnectedness. I honestly cannot say a bad thing about a single story in Aqua Bless, which is surprising because eromanga anthologies usually have at least one story that turns me off. Every story in Aqua Bless is sexy and fun, and none are cringe worthy.
Overall Hotness (1 to 5): 5:G-spot Rocker!!