Love My Life – Manga Review

Japanese Title: Love My Life

 

Related: Free Soul (same author)

 

Genre: Yuri Romance Drama

Length: 1 volume

 

Positives:

  • None.

Negatives:

  • Same terrible art as seen in Free Soul.
  • Many instances of sterile dialogue.
  • Preachy about sexuality.
  • Most characters are hollow.
  • Strawman characters to falsify emotion from the reader.

(contains high levels of nudity and sex)

I really hate the art by this author. It’s just so ugly. Also, why do half the characters look the same as in Free Soul? Anyway, this time we follow Ichiko, a uni student of English literature, who confesses to her dad about her lesbianism and relationship with law student, Eri. Coincidentally, her father confesses that he is also gay, and her late mother was a lesbian. They married for convenience and to have a child. After this, the story focuses on Ichiko and Eri as they deal with university and Ichiko looks into her mother’s past.

Upon seeing the same author as Free Soul, I had little hope for this manga. Thankfully, Love My Life is better, though it still suffers from the exact same problems, just not as bad. Remember the strawman mother from Free Soul? Well, she’s back as Eri’s father; he enters for one scene to tell her he hates lesbians and she will fail in life because of it. We never hear from him again. Then there is the lesbian preaching. Ichiko has to detail a half-dozen times, at least, why she’s a lesbian and why she’s right. We get it. You’re comfortable with your sexuality. How about you show this instead of telling us repeatedly? She repeats it so many times I think she’s actually insecure. Another moment of arse gravy writing involves Ichiko’s gay male friend, Take, who says he hates hanging around his straight male friends because all they do is talk about women. Have enough ham in that fist as you beat the reader with your gospel of “I’m so misunderstood”? This reads like writing by someone who has never met a gay person in real life and assumes that’s what they say.

We can see the author’s signature stilted dialogue in the second key scene when Ichiko meet’s her father’s boyfriend on her own. You meet your recently gay father’s secret lover and there is no awkwardness? Even if Ichiko was confident, which the evidence doesn’t point to, there would be some confrontation or suspicious. Here, it’s the most ordinary meeting ever.

The only interesting part of Love My Life is Eri having to choose between the relationship and her career. Most notable is the lack of preaching about how she can accomplish anything – we see her priorities and conviction through her actions. This was the idea that should have dictated the story, but it feels like the writer forced in strawmen characters and dialogue as a substitute for depth.

Art – Very Low

Still no signs of talent, detail or creativity.

Story – Very Low

Better than Free Soul, but still doesn’t understand how to create real characters of meaningful conflict. More strawmen.

Recommendation: Avoid it. If the hideous art doesn’t put you off, the mind-numbing story should.

(Find out more about the manga recommendation system here.)

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