An Early Look at Just My Luck by Temari Matsumoto Manga Review

 

Title:  Just My Luck

Author:  Temari Matsumoto

Publisher:  TOKYOPOP

ISBN:  9781427802798

May Contain Spoilers

Asahi has nothing but bad luck.  Only a purifying kiss from Rokujou-sensei, the school’s divination adviser, frees him from his run of misfortune – temporarily, any way.  When Rokujou’s childhood friend accepts a teaching position at the school, it seems that Asahi’s luck has gotten even worse!  Where’s sensei and his magical kisses?

Containing three chapters of Just My Luck and two other separate short stories, this book has me reaching for my rose colored manga glasses very early in the volume.  Overlooking the fact that Rokujou was Asahi’s teacher, and how much I dislike that particular plot device, the author also introduced Asahi’s mysteriously forgotten past.  While it did help explain Asahi’s terrible run of bad luck, it’s just a little too convenient that he would forget almost his entire childhood before moving to Tokyo.  It was a clumsy way to extend the story another chapter, and add a little conflict to Asahi and Rokujou’s budding relationship.

I did like the introduction to Rokujou’s character.  The other students find him a little scary and rumors abound that he practices black magic.  This makes it extremely difficult for Asahi to recruit new members to the Divination Research Club, but Rokujou doesn’t really seem to mind, as it means that he gets Asahi to himself.   Sadly, the promise of his eccentric personality was left unfulfilled, and both characters were rather ordinary and uninspiring.

I loved the concept of a hero being cursed with extremely bad luck.  Too bad it wasn’t focused on a little more.  Instead of enhancing the plot, other than the first few pages, Asahi’s misfortune wasn’t realized at all.  It seemed like a waste of to not display how truly awful his luck was. 

In Mechanism of Love, a reclusive toy maker is given an android by his sister in an attempt to force him out of his shell.  The android is stunningly gorgeous, and as the two spend isolated days in the remote mountains, the toy maker finds himself falling in love with his mechanical companion.  This story also featured a traumatic event from the lead’s childhood, which caused him to stop trusting other people.  I enjoyed this one, and thought it wrapped up in a satisfying manner.

School Uniforms and You is about school nurse, Ogasawara, and the object of his affections, Sugiura.  Ogasawara has a school uniform fetish, and Sugiura just happens to look quite fetching in his.  Ogasawara invites Sugiura to tea every day so the two can spend time together.  As Sugiura begins to develop feelings for Ogasawara, he’s thrown into a state of confusion when the nurse doesn’t even give him the time of day when they run into each other outside of school.  Horrors! Sugiura isn’t wearing his uniform, and now he thinks that Ogasawara only likes the clothes, not the man in them.  I thought this was a pretty cute story, too.

While not earth shattering, Just My Luck provided a short escape from reality.  Despite their lack of substance, the characters were likeable, and the chapters all had happy endings, but I really feel that the author could have done more with the title story to make this book stand out.

Just My Luck will be on store shelves in October.

Grade:  C+

Rated for Mature

Review copy provided by TOKYOPOP

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