Falling Into Love (Mania.com)

By:Danielle Van Gorder
Review Date: Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Release Date: Tuesday, October 07, 2008

When Hisashi follows Tomohito into the world of modeling looking for some excitement, he ends up with a little more than he had bargained for.

Creative Staff
Writer/Artist: Takashi Kanzaki
Translation: Leona Wong
Adaptation: Leona Wong

What They Say
High school student Hisashi has admired top model Tomohito for years. His only goal in modeling is to get a contract at the same agency. By shear coincidence, the two happen to be at the same shooting location. Looking to put some fear into his rising competition, Tomohito snares Hisashi into a passionate kiss claiming "I just wanted to wipe that prim look off your face!" But even the best laid plans are bound to have complications. Instead of running off the competition, he may have just gotten himself a suitor!

The Review!
Packaging:

The packaging on 801 Media's releases is top-notch, as it should be for the price.  Full color wraparound dust jackets, color pages, and decent, if not spectacular print quality are all included.  Some pages seem slightly faded and the screen tone reproduction isn't as exact as it could be, which are the only major flaws I found - and, quite honestly, at a lower price point I likely wouldn't have even commented. 

Artwork:

The cover really doesn't show off Kanzaki's art to its best effect - the art inside is gorgeously detailed, assured, and has almost a cinematic quality to it.  It's very solid and grounded, worlds away from the wispy, delicate artwork that some BL artists favor, although it shares some similar stylistic elements.  Action scenes are definitely not her strong suit, as she seems to rely on speed lines exclusively to express the feeling of motion, but luckily this is a rare occurrence. 

Text/SFX:

All sound effects are subtitled on the page in a font similar to the original.  The translation flowed relatively smoothly with few rough points.

Contents (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):

A year before, Hisashi ran across one of Tomohito's photo shoots and was immediately captured by his intensity.  Given the opportunity to become a professional model himself, Hisashi leaped at the chance, but quickly found himself disillusioned by the reality, until a second chance meeting with Tomohito changed his outlook entirely.  Angry and confused, Hisashi winds up at Tomohito's office without knowing quite how he got there.  Tomohito invites him in, and offers him a challenge along with a second kiss - as long as Hisashi can keep Tomohito's interest, he can stay close to him.  Having just realized that he fell for Tomohito somewhere along the way, Hisashi agrees.

Even though they're supposedly together, Hisashi doesn't get quite as much satisfaction from the relationship as he had hoped for.  Tomohito seems to reserve his real interest for his younger brother, and an upcoming photo shoot conflicts with his high school exams.  Left with a choice between his education and the modeling world he only entered to get close to his new lover, Tomohito's indifference to Hisashi's choice may drive him away forever.

In "Prepare Yourself," Nakaba and Katsuki are detectives working undercover to discover why a young girl turned herself into a shut-in.  The case awakens some horrific memories from Katsuki's past that he has to struggle to overcome.  "I Want to Be With You" deals with a more than slightly bizarre (and deviant) love triangle. Finally, in "Love's Recommendation," academic rivals become something more, with a few false steps along the way.

Comments:

Despite the setup, there was really never much of a sense of tension in the title story - the outcome was preordained, with only a few surprises along the way.  Like the helicopter, which just seemed incredibly random and almost inappropriately funny.  The other stories were distinctly odd, which seems to be the only way I can find to sum them up briefly.  If incest, non consensual sex, light bondage, and other such delights are your thing, these are worth a look for the rather unique view Kanzaki brings to the table if nothing else.  This is definitely a book that earned its mature rating, for both graphic artwork and content. 



Mania Grade: C
Art Rating: A
Packaging Rating: A-
Text/Translation Rating: B
Age Rating: 18 and Up
Released By: 801 Media
MSRP: 15.95
Pages: 176
ISBN: 978-1934129241
Size: B6
Orientation: Right to Left
Series: Falling Into Love