Il Gatto Sul G. 2 by Tooko Miyagi: B

From the back cover:
The crescendo builds as “Black” Riya becomes more dominant and, if he has his way, would erase “White” Riya from existence. But whichever personality surfaces, kind and compassionate Atsushi is ready to burst into a torch song for Riya, after realizing that he is in love with the confused young man. Upperclassman Kousaka, however, is set on derailing the symphony that is Atsushi’s and Riya’s relationship. Kousaka, you see, has feelings for Riya as well.

Seriously, you guys. Enough with the musical terms.

This volume suffers a bit from middle book syndrome. Some important things occur, but there are also some slow passages and I think it’d be pretty impossible to jump into the series with this volume and enjoy it. Essentially, Riya gives a concert and performs admirably, then promptly switches into “Black” mode and spends the next ten days at home, where Atsushi has been hired by a family member to be a live-in housekeeper and submit status reports on Riya’s condition.

One of Riya’s schoolmates overhears the details about his other personality and history of childhood abuse, and shares this information with the upperclassman (Kousaka) who has been tormenting Riya. When Kousaka runs into Riya’s Black personality, the Black personality tells him off (calling him a loser because of his nonconsensual desires!) and then promptly asks Atsushi to sleep with him. Atsushi nearly does, but doesn’t want it to happen that way, telling Riya he loves him. Next morning? Riya’s back to his White personality with no memory of the incident.

There are some things about this series I like and some I just don’t get. For example, I like that Riya’s two personalities, despite being called Black and White, are not really complete opposites wherein one is weak and one is strong. Black, while more willful, has a special attachment to Atsushi and gets really upset when people talk about White in front of him. White, while more obedient, has a lot of pride and doesn’t want to allow himself to rely on anyone. Also, I like how the intimate scene between Atsushi and Riya is entirely about the characters. That makes it all the more sexy, in my opinion.

On the negative side, I’m confused about Riya’s relationship with his pushy upperclassman, Kousaka. In volume one, it seemed that Riya didn’t enjoy Kousaka’s attentions even though he didn’t fend them off. Here, we see that he supposedly has admired Kousaka all this time and might be a bit interested in him. Is this just filling in backstory or is it retcon? I can’t tell. Also, both Riya (in “Black” mode) and Kousaka claim that they slept together, but honestly, after much careful perusal of volume one, I can’t see it. While Riya’s pants do suffer a hull breach, they’re never jettisoned that I can tell. Yes, I totally just made a Star Trek reference.

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  1. Danielle Leigh says

    ha! HULL BREACH! *giggles* Dude. Okay. Must. Calm. Down.

    I’m really looking forward to seeing your take on the last volume….I wanted to comment on your review of vol 1 but would have been “nodding knowingly” about future events and that’s always annoying. So I’ve decided to just say I felt like doing it, and didn’t, which is probably the same thing. 😉


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