Gou Shiira & Ishida Ikue: It’s Not Love

{Gou Shiira & Ishida Ikue} It's Not Love [3.4]While I can’t quite recommend this unless you want to laugh at things that aren’t meant to be funny, I did enjoy reading this (though certainly not the way the author intended). Three friends are out drinking when a guy who knows them but who none of them initially admit to not knowing interrupts them and makes a nuisance of himself. They try to dismiss the guy but he doesn’t budge and he eventually presents a wager where he is the prize and they each have to date him for a week to win him. That whole premise is a no go for me. I don’t like interlopers and or pushy people and I despise when characters don’t say “no” to things that are obvious exercises in manipulation. Even the character who was most against it still goes along with it. It’s all so irritating.

Premise aside, this book had some unforgettable moments. There’s the one where the character talks about sinking his teeth into someone’s flesh and later on comparing it to biting into an apple. Apples are a thing in this story–not a huge thing, but they’re there. There’s the moment I read something and was unsure about what it meant, but in my heart I knew, but I kept chanting “context clues, context clues” because they weren’t strong enough to confirm, but considering the type of story I was reading I knew I didn’t really need them. And of course a few pages later it was confirmed and the “wtf” I had been reserving made its way out. But I think the thing that I remember and actually appreciated is that when two of the characters finally got together, rather than it being overly awkward or wildly passionate, it was sort of mundane and somewhat disappointing for one of them and casually embarrassing for the other, but they were totally okay with it. That never happens!

Another thing that was both funny and annoying, but in a completely different way was the typographical errors and amongst those was the gendering of one of the characters. How is it that you can refer to a single character as “he” and “she” on the same page? That wasn’t the only thing, the character’s gender changed from page to page. Now, there is a line in the story that informs us that the character is “biologically male,” but even if that is mentioned to indicate that they are otherwise (and they seem to as one of the characters asked if he/she was someone’s sister), I still don’t see how that is grounds for the constant gender switching. Furthermore, if that is how the original Japanese read, interchanging he and she at will, there should have been a note included, because that is really confusing.

There were other interesting and eyebrow raising things, but overall, it was 100 pages of enh that I’m likely not to return to.

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