Cherry Magic! Thirty Years of Virginity Can Make You a Wizard?! Volume 1
I was tickled by the concept of Cherry Magic! Thirty Years of Virginity Can Make You a Wizard?! when a fellow comic club member (hi, Rachel!) told us about it.
Basically, office worker Adachi turns 30 and is still a virgin, so he gains the magic ability to read the mind of someone when he touches them. When he accidentally touches a handsome, popular coworker, he discovers that this coworker, Kurosawa, has a crush on him! So Kurosawa is trying to hide his feelings while freaking out internally, while Adachi can’t believe anyone would like him. It’s a boys’ love rom-com, and I was so ready for it. (It’s by Yuu Toyota, published by Square Enix, who have posted a preview, and it originally started on Twitter.)
Unfortunately, it took a few tries for me to appreciate it, because at the start, I had a hard time keeping the various voices straight. Adachi is narrating to us, and then there’s the dialogue between the two, and the interior monologues of each. I often had to stop and think about who was saying what and whether they knew it had been heard or not, which prevented me from getting totally into the story. Also, the handsome guy didn’t look that different from the other guy.
Thankfully, that settled down after the first few chapters, or perhaps I got more used to it, and then I enjoyed it. I liked how Adachi alternated between “oh, we have some things in common” and “his exaggerated fantasies about me are creeping me out!” There are a lot of mood swings in this manga, which are fun to read. It makes sense, since Adachi’s nervous around people (30-year-old virgin, remember), and his powers only complicate things.
Events keep throwing the two men together, whether it’s the boss sending them out to a restaurant to thank them for working well (and late) together, or one crashing at the other’s place after the trains stop running. By the end of this volume, Adachi is considering his real feelings for Kurosawa, getting past the shock of “someone likes me?!? and he’s cute!”
Also in this volume are two background short stories, one showing us why Kurosawa likes Adachi and the other about how the two deal with Valentine’s Day. Another piece shows us more about Adachi’s friend Tsuge, a romance novelist with his own secret. Earlier in the book, Adachi asked him for suggestions about what to do, and while he’s rather cynical, it turned out to be somewhat decent advice. I’m glad to see more of this character, as he’s weird in his own way, and his relationship with his delivery guy, via his cat, is also promising.
I’m ready for the second book, where the two leads apparently go on a business trip together. This couple is cute and fun to read about.