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Takane & Hana Vol. #01 Manga Review

4 min read

Always be yourself.

Creative Staff
Story/Art: Yuki Shiwasu
Translation/Adaptation: JN Productions

What They Say
A strong-willed high school girl and a hot, young scion of a business empire can’t help trying to outwit each other every chance they get… But could these opposites be conning themselves out of the perfect match?!

After her older sister refuses to go to an arranged marriage meeting with Takane Saibara, the heir to a vast business fortune, high schooler Hana Nonomura agrees to be her stand-in to save face for the family. But what happens when Hana meets Takane is an unexpected pairing of utter opposites!

The meeting between Takane and Hana ends in an explosive manner, and Hana is convinced that she’ll never have to see that awful Takane again. But Takane actually seems interested in Hana! Exasperated by Takane’s immature attitude, yet amused and intrigued despite herself, Hana embarks on a hilarious journey with Takane that just might lead to love!

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
Hana is forced to attend an arranged marriage ceremony in place of her older sister. The man she is meeting is rich and handsome, but has a terrible personality! She can’t stand Takane’s rude comments and ends up telling him off and stomping away. Unfortunate for Hana, a sixteen-year-old high school, Takane actually ends up interested in her.

Takane actually knows from the get go that Hana is not her sister, and his interest at first is just to irritate her. He picks Hana up daily to go to fancy place and they continually butt heads, but Hana isn’t aware that Takane knows who she really is. Finally, her sister, who just broke up with her boyfriend, wants to meet Takane. However, Takane is not interested in Hana’s sister, he’s really is interested in Hana and her straightforward ways. The truth comes out for everyone, but Hana has to have the last word and plants a big kiss on Takane.

Takane and Hana continue to go out and fight like always, and Hana is finding herself a little happy about the situation. She feels uneasy though when she sees the ten-year older Takane living the adult world and she is really just a kid. How ever far apart their worlds are, it seems that Takane can only really be at ease when he is with Hana.

While Takane and Hana’s ages is one thing, the social classes they are in are also far apart. Takane is forced to a second arranged marriage meeting and Hana, while maintaining she is not jealous, spies on Takane. The woman is beautiful and comes from a good family, but Hana could see how Takane was putting on an act. She can’t keep quiet any longer and jumps out in front of the couple spilling Takane’s worst personality traits and his good points too. Turns out Takane’s interest is still only Hana, and he makes sure to tell her that.

While Takane and Hana continue to see each other and taunt each other, there is a looming thought on Hana’s mind. Is marriage the goal for Takane? She feels she is not ready to even consider it, but yet she doesn’t want to stop seeing Takane. When she finally gets up the nerve to tell Takane, he scoffs at her and reminds her to be herself and not put labels on everything.

In Summary
What I liked in this manga is that both of the main characters had strong personalities, which was the intention on the mangaka’s behalf according to the author notes. I do have a hard time liking any story of any kind when the women are consistently weak. So, when the girl is young, sassy and honest, I take a liking to her character.

The story also did a good job confronting the issue of their ten-year age gap and class differences. Each chapter actually emphasized all the reasons they shouldn’t be together and all the reasons they felt so comfortable with each. I also liked that it was okay for them to not label their relationship. Not all relationships have to be in the friend or significant other category. And considering the potentially taboo relationship of an adult male and high school girl, it was good to leave at that.

What bothered me the most actually had nothing to do with the story itself, but how this story is treated differently than others stories, specifically mangas that have had large age gaps between the two primary characters with one being a minor. I have heard over and over on social media how some manga can’t be brought over US because of this reason. Or how people can’t stomach a story that has a “pedophile” in it. While the physical interaction between Takane and Hana is very limited, Takane is actively taking Hana out and made it clear that he is not interested in any other women than her. It’s for each person to decide where his or her comfortable level is and what you would consider personally okay or not. I actually do like this story, but I understand others may not.

Content Grade: B
Art Grade: B
Packaging Grade: B-
Text/Translation Grade: A
Age Rating: Teen

Released By: Shojo Beat (Viz Media)
Release Date: February 6, 2018
MSRP: $9.99

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