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Yoneyama Kyuyu: Free Soul

The narration is by the main character, Chihomi who has fallen crazy in love with the new hire, Satoshi, at the cafe she works at. Even though she’s talking about herself throughout the story, I don’t feel like the story is about her at all. It’s definitely about Satoshi and Chihomi is just a device for getting to know him, even though we never really do. Satoshi is reserved and Chihomi is forward and that creates awkward situations for Satoshi who does not return Chihomi’s feelings. And Itoh, the cafe manager is just taking it all in.

The story had a decent amount of potential, but it was less than 70 pages and it suffered for that. The transition between events was too abrupt or nonsensical. Two or three additional pages at those points would have done wonders for the flow of the story. Also, the setup of the big reveal was okay, but how Satoshi’s secret was actually discovered by Itoh makes no sense. He touches Satoshi’s shoulder as gesture of encouragement and then this look of realization spreads across his face. Now, unless he’s skilled in some form of psychometry, there’s no way he could know what was going on with Satoshi just by that one touch. Then the story ends without us knowing the specifics of Satoshi’s secret and Chihomi still clueless and resolving to confess.

Like I said, a decent amount of potential, but the way the story was told, it needed more pages to really make it work. On the other hand, a more seasoned writer probably could have written a tighter story in the same amount of pages.

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