Foreign Friday: HaruHana

This week’s Foreign Friday title is HaruHana by Yuana Kazumi.

The Story

Hana Yamada was all set for her big Tokyo debut – She’d just moved from Osaka, and finally thought she had her unusual “condition” under control. As long as she’s got her beloved green tea by her side, she can totally cure the hives she gets whenever she bumps into a cute boy! But her first day starts off disastrous and only gets worse, culminating in Hana’s sister bartering her into indentured servitude at a local relaxation room run by two young men! Can Hana keep her cool around the flamboyant Shinnosuke, and even worse, the hot but prickly Haru? How can you reach out to someone who you can never actually touch?

The Characters

Hana is your usual naive, bright and cheery (and occasionally clumsy) heroine. Haru is your cool, brooding, introverted hero with a soft side under layers of disinterest. The pair make for a classic shojo couple.

What I Thought

HaruHana had an interesting and entertaining beginning, a promising middle, but an hurried and only semi-fulfilling conclusion. I blame the probable fact that the author wasn’t given enough time to really explore the possibilities of the characters or the situation. Overall, I found the series enjoyable, but full of a lot of unused potential. Hana was an entertaining heroine, but I wished that there had been more disclosure on the cause of her condition (she states in the first chapter that it was due to an ‘incident’ but we never hear what that was), and Haru had a lot of unexplained aspects to him. The artwork was fun and lively, with a different sort of heroine style than I’ve seen in a while (the hair!). It’s complete in 3 volumes I think (I read the complete collection in an omnibus), which is all available in English in the U.S.

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