Time Lag by Gothoh & Odagiri Manga Review

Title: Time Lag

Author:  Shinobu Gothoh & Hotaru Odagiri

Publisher:  June

ISBN:  1569709211

May Contain Spoilers

Satoru Tendou  loves Shirou, and every year for the last two years, he has confessed his hopeless love to him right before school break.  Shirou coldly rebuffed him each time, and Satoru is bewildered by how cruelly Shirou now treats him.  At one time they were best friends, until Satoru, confused by his feelings, put some distance between them.  When a letter arrives from Shirou that was mailed 3 years before, Satoru suddenly understands how Shirou feels. Is it too late to mend their friendship?

This was a sweet, angsty read.  Satoru’s confusion about how he feels for Shirou causes a chasm between them, and when he finally musters the courage to confess his love for his childhood friend, Shirou accuses him of playing a cruel joke on him.  Since his best friend has abandoned him, something that happened, Satoru admits, because of himself, he can only sigh longingly after him. 

Shirou is a track star at their high school, and Satoru follows him with his camera, putting his heart into snapping pictures of the athlete for the school paper.  Lovingly framing each shot, it’s obvious to everyone that Satoru harbors feelings for Shirou.

Into the scene walks handsome Seiichi, editor-in-chief of the school newspaper.  Seiichi chastises Satoru for still carrying a flame for the frosty Shirou.  To further complicate Satoru’s life, he has a confession of his own – he’s in love with Satoru!

At first I wanted to slap Satoru for still having feelings for the awful Shirou, but after belated letter arrives, the reason for his hard words and uncaring attitude is revealed.  Satoru agonizes through the entire book, first because he believes that Seiichi and Shirou are attracted to each other, and then because he finally understands Shirou’s reaction, but he doesn’t know how to approach his former friend. 

I liked the art in the book.  The characters were all very attractive (of course), and despite the occasional emotional muddle, the story is visually  easy to follow.  There are lots of close-ups of our characters, burning with embarrassment or dazed with confusion.

In terms of hot boy on boy action, there is none.  Our couple does little more than share a tender kiss.  If you’re hoping for a little skin to be revealed, you’re doomed to disappointment.  If you are in the mood for a sweet romance, this might fit the bill.

Grade: B 

Rated for 16+

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