Title: I Hate You More Than Anyone Vol 3
Author: Banri Hidaka
May Contain Spoilers
As Kazuha gets caught up in preparations for tests, she tries to put her distractions aside. Thoughts of Sugimoto keep interfering with her studies, and she doesn’t know how to handle the situation. She waits morosely for him to call, jumping with anticipation each time the phone rings. With her mind on other things, she doesn’t notice that her brother, Chizuru, is having problems of his own. Resentful of their father, he’s lashing out by running with the wrong crowd and blowing off his school work. When Kazuha finally realizes what’s going on, will it be too late to help her troubled brother?
I found this volume of I Hate You More Than Anyone to be terribly frustrating. It felt very rambly as more sub-plots were introduced, which only served to dilute the main focus of the story. Sugimoto and Kazuha’s relationship took a huge detour here, and instead the spotlight was pointed in other directions. The conflict with Kazuha’s younger brother felt forced and unconvincing, as he struggles with his feelings about their father. Once the apple of his eye, Chizuru now feels abandoned and lost amongst his siblings. With six kids to raise, their father is always working, and has little time to spare for his children. Now Chizuru is rebelling, preferring negative attention to none at all, even while he’s disturbing the once peaceful Akiyoshi household. Even Kazuha becomes fed up with his behavior, and worse, she blames Sugimoto for some of it.
Meanwhile, Kazuha is in the midst of tests, and must start making decisions regarding her future. Unable to muster the nerve to contact Sugimoto, she’s waiting for him to call her. Her longing to see him and form a closer bond with him has got her thinking of passing up on college and going to trade school instead, so she can become a hair dresser. She has no real passion for her newly realized career decision; she just wants to have something in common with Sugimoto.
Their relationship, while not exactly back to square one, has drifted backward. For every step forward that they take, something pops up to force them two steps back. I won’t even complain too loudly that Sugimoto didn’t have a meaningful appearance until better than halfway into the book, because once he did show up, they cleared the air a little between them. That is until Kazuha started to blame Sugimoto for some of Chizuru’s unconventional behavior. She certainly has a temper. All of those brothers and sisters must have contributed to her short fuse.
This volume of I Hate You More Than Anyone seemed like it was heading off track. Hopefully, more attention will be given to Kazuha and Sugimoto’s rocky relationship in the next installment.
Rated for Teen