Title: La Corda d’Oro #1
Author: Yuki Kure
May Contain Spoilers
Kahoko is a student in the General Education department at Seisou Academy. Her life is turned upside down when she catches a glimpse of Lili, the fairy that lives on campus. He gives her a magical violin, and before she knows it, she’s been selected to participate in the musical competition that’s held every few years. Surrounded by the gifted students of the Music department, what chance does Kahoko, with her lack of musical talents, have to win the contest?
Based on the Koei video game, La Corda d’Oro seems like an excuse to surround a cute heroine with a group of gorgeous guys. Kahoko’s ability to see the school fairy gets her into a situation where she’s hopelessly over her head. Even with the magical violin, her efforts to play the instrument yield less than the desired results. Chastised by Lili for not genuinely appreciating the music she’s attempting to play, Kahoko learns that her emotions are what influences the violin’s music. If she doesn’t play with a true effort, all the violin produces is ugly noise.
The personalities of the other contest participants are only briefly touched on in this volume. Ren is an overbearing jerk and Yunoki reminds me of Yuki from Fruits Basket with his fastidious manners and glowering fangirl groupies. Not much is revealed about sleepy Shimizu in this installment. Of the contestants, I like the trumpet playing Hihara the best, because he seems like a fun guy. Oh, and he’s nice. Unlike Ren, who’s a jerk. Wait, I said that already.
The art is clean and pleasant, with attractive character designs. The layouts are easy to follow, and Yuki Kure uses a variety of panel sizes and shapes to keep the pages interesting. Also included are initial character sketches, character interviews, and a glossary.
While this was a pleasant enough read, I didn’t feel that there was much about it that set it apart from other books in the same genre. I’ll stick around for a few more volumes, though, to see how the story progresses.
Rated for Teen