ARC Review: Shikimori’s Not Just a Cutie, Vol. 1 by Keigo Maki

Shikimori's Not Just a Cutie, Vol. 1Shikimori’s Not Just a Cutie, Vol. 1 by Keigo Maki
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Shikimori seems like the perfect girlfriend: cute, fun to be around, sweet when she wants to be… but she has a cool dark side that comes out under the right circumstances. And her boyfriend Izumi loves to be around when that happens! A fun and funny high school romance with a sassy twist perfect for fans of Nagatoro-san and Komi Can’t Communicate!

Shikimori and Izumi are high school sweethearts. They hold hands walking home from school, they flirt in the halls, they tease each other. But Shikimori knows what she wants, and how to get it, and she can turn from cutie to cool in an instant.

A reversal of shoujo tropes, Shikimori’s Not Just a Cutie has a practically cursed teen boy, Izumi, who has the coolest seeming girlfriend ever. Izumi, whose daily life has him stumbling and crashing like a shoujo manga’s female protagonist, finds himself in situations where his girlfriend, Shikimori, saves him a la shoujo manga tsundere love interest style, making him exclaim about how cool she is. Shikimori seems like a typical cute shy girl, but she is also quite smooth, impressing Izumi whenever she saves him from something falling on him, or protecting him from flying newspapers or something. Izumi, while also being adoring about his cool girlfriend, who his classmates think is out of his league BTW, sometimes feels he needs to be more ‘manly’ or something. However, he forgets about that whenever she manages to impress him again. The artwork style is cute, and the situations are more 4-koma style in a slice-of-life tone, so as for plot, it doesn’t have much. It is typically something happens -> Shikimori does something cool -> cue Izumi’s gushing, which can get repetitive after some time. But I can’t deny that I love a good protagonist drinking his ‘respect girlfriend’ juice, so it is quite fun to read, too!

Received an advance reader copy in exchange for a fair review from Kodansha Comics, via Netgalley.

View all my reviews

Buy links

The Book Depository | Wordery

Released on October 27, 2020

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