Love Hurts: Aishiatteru Futari by Suzuki Tanaka: A-

lovehurtsFrom the creator of Menkui! comes this collection of intriguing (and chaste!) boys’ love stories.

“The Fate of a Crime Fighter’s Love” features childhood friends Seigo and Touma, who hail from a village where everyone has super powers. Some seek to do evil with their abilities, while others work to stop them. This story has a fairly comedic tone, but the characters are likeable and their relationship evolves into love pretty organically. “Kanako’s Story” is actually not BL at all, but fits in with the others because it’s all about a boy’s feelings of love for his “stupid and weird… but cute” childhood friend and classmate, Kana. She’s been telling him her whole life that she converses with an alien, but he’d only nodded politely until it turns out that it was all true.

While the sci-fi tales are both enjoyable, the real standouts are the first two stories, “Unforgivable” and “Two in Love.” In the former, Koji has just discovered the corpse of his lover. While he’s still in shock, a guy named Kohaku arrives and, after talking to him and a mysterious stranger, Koji ends up declaring that he’s the killer. In “Two in Love,” we follow Kohaku and his lover, Kimihara, who share a violent relationship. On top of this, Kimihara is pestered by a psychotic student where he teaches who likes to confess her misdeeds to him. This time, she admits to killing a person. The link between these two stories is very interesting and my one real complaint about Love Hurts is that there’s no follow-through here.

All in all, I was very pleasantly surprised by how good and unique these stories are. Definitely recommended.

Review copy provided by the publisher. Review originally published at Manga Recon.

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