Volume 8 picks up the hanging plotline of Volume 7: the school’s sports festival is about to begin! Hori gets competitive in a surprising way, Miyamura’s motivated by his girlfriend’s enthusiasm, and the couple gets split onto different teams, leading to some internal strife over cheering. Later, a yearbook leads to contemplation of Miyamura’s middle school years and one of the boys who bullied him.
Hori and Miyamura return to the forefront in Volume 8, and their interactions are absolutely adorable. After the past two volumes, this one is especially refreshing as it returning to a more typical slice-of-life storyline. School sports festivals are a mainstay of slice-of-life manga, and the festival in this volume showcase sweet interactions between many characters.
There are a few elements related to Volume 7 when a classmate’s crush on Hori becomes too blatant for Miyamura to ignore. Mizouchi pretty directly tells Miyamura he doesn’t seem good enough for Hori, leading to Miyamura showing (rather expressively) that Hori likes when Miyamura is “mean” to her.
One of the more meaningful arcs of this volume involves Miyamura and Tanihara, the boys on the cover. Tanihara was introduced in previous volumes as one of Miyamura’s middle-school classmates, and Tanihara was responsible for some of the ostracizing Miyamura experienced. In this volume, Tanihara feels compelled to apologize for one of the things he’d done during those years, and the resulting interaction helps both boys to grow.
Why’d I hate Miyamura anyway? If I can’t remember, I guess there wasn’t any real reason.
Much of the volume centers on competition, which isn’t surprising for a volume that starts off with a sports festival, but it’s also nice to see interactions that center on other kinds of interpersonal relationships in high school.
Volume 8 returns to the super lighthearted romantic comedy style of earlier volumes, and it contains a pretty lovely plotline about childhood insecurity and the growth and maturity teens reach as they get older. It’s great to see this volume returning to the tone of the earlier parts of the series, and I’m extremely happy to recommend this for slice-of-life manga fans.
Story: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Art: 4 out of 5 stars
Overall: 4 out of 5 stars
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