I've been doing Manga Mondays every week since I started my blog 18 months ago. It's always been a personal feature, but now I'm going to try turning it into a meme. There are quite a few people who do Manga Mondays. I don't claim by any means that I owned or created the idea of Manga Mondays - it's an obvious choice given the alliteration. I think a meme would be a good way for everyone to publicize their own Manga Mondays and get a little more publicity.
The linky will be below my review.
Sugar Princess vol. 1 by Hisaya Nakajo
Maya Kurinoki is an 8th-grader who has no experience in ice-skating but seems to have natural talent. She performs a double axel and impresses a scout named Eiji Todo, who tells her that he can make her a skating "princess." Todo tells Maya that she'll have to convince famous skater Shun Kano to coach her and become her skating partner. Unfortunately for Maya, Shun only wants to skate singles.
When Maya Kurinoki takes her little brother to the local ice-skating rink for the first time, she's got her hands full just trying to get him to let go of the bar. To inspire a bit of bravery in him, she attempts a double axel--and lands it! Maya never imagined that this jump would change her life...or that a coach named Eiji Todo would vow to make her a figure skating "princess"! Now all Maya has to do is convince famous skater Shun Kano to become her partner. Too bad Shun doesn't want to have anything to do with her!(courtesy of Goodreads)
*Warning: Potential spoilers. My manga reviews tend to be more of a summary than a review. I find it hard to review manga in the same way I do regular books.
Sugar Princess is a refreshing change from the fantasy/paranormal manga that I usually read. It's a contemporary (somewhat realistic) fiction. As you see from the summary, Maya executes a double axel her first time ice skating. Call me crazy, but I see no possibility of that happening in real life. Despite the rather unlikely beginning, Sugar Princess is a delightful, somewhat realistic book.
Maya wants to take ice skating lessons. To do so for free, fabulous skater Shun becomes her coach. The real coach thinks that they will make excellent pairs partners some day. Shun is less enthusiastic. As you might imagine, Shun is handsome and brusque, but secretly very kind and chivalrous.
I liked that Maya was a talented but not perfect ice skater. Sure she executed a double axel without experience, but the book is realistic enough to show her struggling a little with skating - not as much as would be realistic, but still something. I also liked how it showed Maya trying to balance school and skating, not quite successfully. She sleeps a lot in school. Maya is soon to take the high school entrance exams, a crucial step for any Japanese student. I'm curious to see what happens in future volumes.
I'm also looking to see more of Maya's family. She has a big family - very big for Japanese standards. Two sisters and a little brother. The parents are largely absent, but I love the relationship between the siblings. It's mostly shown around the dinner table. Maya's friends are the typical loyal manga girl friends. Nothing unique, but likeable.
Sugar Princess is an adorable manga. It's one of those books that has little depth to it, but you don't read it looking for depth. If you want a sweet, fluffy volume of manga, Sugar Princess is a great place to go.