Love Roma Vol. #04 -

Anime/Manga Reviews

Mania Grade: B+

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  • Art Rating: B+
  • Packaging Rating: B+
  • Text/Translatin Rating: A
  • Age Rating: 13 & Up
  • Released By: Del Rey
  • MSRP: 10.95
  • Pages: 208
  • ISBN: 0-345-48265-4
  • Size: B6
  • Orientation: Right to Left

Love Roma Vol. #04

By Jarred Pine     November 22, 2006
Release Date: October 31, 2006

Love Roma Vol.#04
© Del Rey

Creative Talent
Writer/Artist:Minoru Toyoda
Translated by:David and Eriko Walsh
Adapted by:David and Eriko Walsh

What They Say
Hoshino's never been afraid to tell Negishi just how he feels about her. Hoshino loves Negishi heart and soul - after all, she's his very first love. But suddenly it's gotten harder to share his feelings, because now he's feeling something he's never felt before: jealousy!

The new boy at school, Wakaba, has a major crush on Negishi. And when Wakaba and Negishi become friends, Hoshino gets worried. Is Negishi pulling away from him? And will Hoshino's silence only make things worse?

The Review
What's this? Minoru Toyoda is trying to introduce a little bit of drama into our lovable, sugar-coated romantic comedy!? Yes, it's true, but as with everything in the world of Love Roma, even drama can put a smile on my face.

All relationships have their bumps in the road or obstacles to overcome; no path in a relationship is on the smooth and narrow, which Hoshino and Negishi have been traveling for quite a while. But with college entrance exams, rival love interests, class president campaigns, and Valentine's day chocolate thrown in their way, our adorable couple will have to learn to communicate and support each other to get through these "hard" times.

I say "hard"� because let's face it, nothing is ultimately that difficult in Toyoda's world. At first it's easy to dismiss the relationships in Love Roma as too innocent and unrealistic; but I must ask, is there really that much angst and drama in a middle school relationship? I'd tend to lean towards "no". Yes, Hoshino's unbelievable straight-forward, and oft times dimwitted, statements are out of this world, as well as Negishi's fits of smacking, but therein lies the charm--young relationships stripped down to their very raw and pure innocent form.

The trap that Toyoda seems to be falling into with this volume is repetitiveness; we've been through the whole jealousy bought before and each chapter is more and more just becoming one long boke & tsukkomi joke, with Hoshino obviously playing the role of the boke. With no real traction, even though they have no graduated to their 3rd year, the jokes and chapter plots can all begin to mesh into one. That being said, there aren't a lot of manga out there that can keep me constantly grinning from ear to ear from beginning to end, which Love Roma still manages to do with ease.


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