Welcome To Fake Paradise!

This is the personal writing blog for Joana Hill, creative writing major extraordinaire! Here you'll find the random ramblings and occasional writings of a girl obsessed with gay romance and the yaoi manga FAKE. You've been warned.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Yaoi Manga Monday- Cafe Latte Rhapsody


And we return to this feature, since I always have time to procrastinate on things I should be doing, like writing or schoolwork or you know, anything else.

Cafe Latte Rhapsody is one of the most fluffy, lighthearted manga I've ever read. It centers around a single couple.

Hajime Serizawa, often called Seri-san or Seri-chan, is a twenty-three-year-old bookstore clerk in charge of the science and technology shelves in the store he works at. He's very lighthearted most of the time, openly gay and not shy about sex. He also tends to fall for guys who are no good, by his own admission: guys who drink, or ones who gamble away their paychecks and go to him for money. He also has a soft spot for kittens. Seri lives on his own in an apartment, though Keito practically lives there once they get together.

Keito Tsuda MacLeod is 6'5 and part Japanese, French-Canadian, French and Chinese. He's nineteen-years-old and goes to the university near the bookstore Seri works at, often going in there to browse the shelves after class. He has an incredible inferiority complex, mostly stemming from being gawked at all his life because of his height and the fact that his childhood friend, "Riri-chan" often puts him down, saying he's gross and annoying. In fact, after hearing Seri say he tends to fall for no-good guys, Keito asks Riri-chan if he's no-good, and her answer is "No-good? You're super no-good! Not much of a man, either." He has his moments, such as when he pulls Seri's ex-boyfriend off him when said ex-boyfriend tries to seduce Seri into giving him money. Besides Seri, Keito's favorite thing in the world is cafe latte with extra sugar. When Keito and Seri first meet, Seri is terrified of him because despite his kitten-like disposition, Keito has an incredibly intense glare.

So what's it about? Cafe Latte Rhapsody is more of a slice-of-life type manga with a couple different plots. The first one is Seri and Keito getting together. They bond over a couple of kittens they find abandoned while walking on the same street one day. A few days after that, they get cafe lattes together, and Keito explains to Seri how scientists say that the universe is actually the color of a latte, as seen if you look in a high-powered telescope. There is conflict, such as the ex-boyfriend who constantly comes around to Seri's apartment asking for money and Seri's own inferiority complex about his looks, and the fact that he tends to over-think when it comes to relationships.

Case in point. Seri wondering about the end of relationships even as Keito is asleep with his head in his lap >_>

Still, it's a basically sweet manga and actually the exact kind of thing I've been wanting to read for a long time. For those familiar with the yaoi stereotypes, the "bottom" partner in sex tends to be younger, more naive and less sexually experienced, while the "top" partner tends to be the exact opposite. Cafe Latte Rhapsody pretty much flips that around, since Keito ends up being the, ah, "dominant" one in bed. Hah!

Cafe Latte Rhapsody is put out by June, so if you're interested in it, you can probably order it online or find it in your local bookstore if they carry yaoi. Happy reading!

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