As I said before, I thought I’d do a post on a Guide to Shoujo mangas, authors version because I had a sudden thought that searching for mangas based on the author would be interesting instead of the usual of searching based on story itself. I did think of making this a page by itself but then I finally decided not to so here it is in ‘post’ form haha.
You know how after you’ve finished reading a good manga, you feel so good about it that you just automatically start searching for other mangas by the same author? Yep I’m no exception here. I’m going to give a brief description on the mangakas and their style of stories as well as some of my comments and opinions on their artwork and list down their most frequently used genre.
*Note that almost all of the authors listed below use the shoujo genre.
Let’s start with the more well-known ones.
Suzuki Julietta is famous for Kamisama Hajimemashita and the lesser known Akuma to Dolce. Her preferred story genres seem to be school life and supernatural, as well as comedy, which she is really good at especially for the former mentioned. So far, I’ve only read these two mangas of hers and I’m already pretty much satisfied with Kamisama Hajimemashita because of the wonderfully crafted out story line. I was amazed when everything fell into place at the revelation like pieces of a puzzle. For artwork, Suzuki Julietta’s is a bit rough and sketchy (I don’t know how else to call it) but for her mangas, I think that’s not the main focus as she manages to draw you away from that to turn your attention to the comedy and the story instead. When her characters have touching moments though, they look especially attractive and beautiful.
Hino Matsuri is famous for Vampire Knight and Merupuri. Some of you may also even know WANTED, which was also written and illustrated by her. Her preferred genres seem to be supernatural, school life and romance. I would say that her stories have interesting story lines. Vampire Knight was a dark story with a complicated plot and character secrets but I guess she unfolded all those pretty well in the end. Merupuri wasn’t so dark but it leaned more on the borderline of seriousness and comedy back and forth. As for WANTED, it was mostly comedy I’d say, as it is a short one-shot manga. Also, the thing about Hino Matsuri’s mangas is the attractive artwork of her characters; they mostly have long curly hair with deep-set eyes and serious looking faces but when they smile, they become so attractive.
Kamio Youko is famous for Hana Yori Dango and Cat Street, both of which are really good. Her preferred genres seem to be romance and school life. The comedy in her stories are pretty good too, more obvious and profound in Hana Yori Dango, which I remember made me laugh quite a lot during the time I was reading it. Both Hana Yori Dango and Cat Street are about society and real-life problems that people face (it’s brilliant that Kamio Youko addresses these problems in her stories) and I like how she manages to create admirable characters that people can relate to and also look up to. Both Makino Tsukushi and Aoyama Keito are similar to many girls in the sense that they’ve been bullied, left out and lost trust in the people around them. Creating such normal, human characters that young girls everywhere can relate to is this author’s winning point and she probably knows it too.
Touyama Ema is famous for Watashi ni xx Shinasai!, a story about a high school girl who is also a cellphone novelist and her relationship with the most popular boy in her class as she learns more about love. I really like Watashi ni xx Shinasai! because of the art and the relationship between Yukina and Shigure, the two main leads. To be honest, I even had a thing for Shigure at some point hahaha. The characters are what drive the story but the main story line has somewhat slowed down, with not much kick to it or anything to look forward to, except the development of Yukina and Shigure’s relationship. A lesser known manga of Touyama Ema’s is Koko Ni Iru Yo!, which was a little more relatable I think. The common genres used are drama, romance and school life. One thing that struck me about Watashi ni xx Shinasai! was that Yukina wears glasses, which is something rare about a female lead. How many shoujo female protagonists actually wear glasses? Not many. And I like that about her character. Touyama Ema likes to draw her girls with similar (same) hairstyles and somewhat round faces (Hikage and Yukina). Her guys are drawn similarly too (Hinata and Shigure) and it seems that the dark-haired guys are her preferred guys of getting the girls.
Motomi Kyousuke is famous for Dengeki Daisy, a story that I really, really love because of its leads Teru and Kurosaki Tasuku. Dengeki Daisy is pretty dark-ish though and much of it supplies us with a lot of information on computer tech and most of everything is shrouded in mystery in the beginning. But as the story unfolds, everything slowly starts to somehow fall in place and the characters become so endearing and sweet that you just wish that Kurosaki Tasuku was real. Some other works that I’ve read by Motomi Kyousuke are Beast Master and Purikyu, which are both good too in their own way. The common genres are comedy, romance and school life and the mangaka does a great take on the comedy – it is just hilarious. I like the way she develops the relationships between her main leads as they come through from understanding one another to later on realising that they need each other. Motomi Kyousuke’s art is beautiful and her stories are brilliant, she’s easily in my top ten favourite mangakas’ list.
Sakisaka Io was my favourite mangaka at one point because of Strobe Edge. I then went on to read her popular Ao Haru Ride, which is going to be adapted into a live-action movie. The common genres of Sakisaka Io’s stories are romance and school life. A significant trait of Sakisaka Io’s stories is that the romance development in her stories are all gradual and her characters are all somewhat more realistic than others in the sense that they are all shy to confess their feelings. This characterisation, though more realistic, makes the story slower and draggy, which can get pretty annoying and generate impatience on the reader’s part. Her One Shot, Sono Omokage o Shitteru wasn’t too bad and since it’s a One Shot, the romance part was speeded up to fit in and be finished within a chapter. As for the art, the girls are typically drawn petite, with huge round eyes and the guys are drawn with long, messy hair. The guy leads tend to have the same personalities, with the cool aura and generally not very good at being true to themselves and expressing their feelings.
Minami Kanan’s famous works are Honey X Honey Drops (which I read first) and Kyou, Koi wo Hajimemasu. Her lesser known works are Ren-Ai Shijou Shuji and Rhapsody in Heaven, which aren’t that far in difference from the first two I mentioned. Minami Kanan is well-known for doing romance, school life and smut stories and most of them involve her female protagonists getting raped and the male protagonists as bold perverts. The relationships somehow work out in the end, of course. I do have a teensy bit of complaint about her characterisation of her female leads though – they always seem to be promising about standing up for themselves but then when a situation calls for it, they turn into helpless little girls who only know how to call for their love interests for help and hope that they magically appear right there and then to save them in shining armour (which they do, tsk). The art of her characters are such that the girls all have long hair with oval shaped faces and the guys are all broad-shouldered with generally long hair for guys.
When I first came across Watanabe Ayu’s L-DK and decided that I wanted to read it, it was because of the beautiful art that drew me to it. L-DK is a popular manga that has booted itself its own live-action drama starring Gouriki Ayame and Yamazaki Kento as Aoi and Shuusei, respectively. I liked the story line of L-DK, though at some point, I started to think that it was getting a bit slow and draggy. The characters are likeable enough but I kind of think that Shuusei is a little hard to understand and that Aoi is starting to become a noble idiot too in the recent chapters. The two’s relationship overall, is cute though. Watanabe Ayu’s common genres are drama, romance and school life. Another manga of hers that I’ve read is Kimi ga Suki, which was a little painful to read with a high level of noble idiocy in that story but was still passable by redeeming itself in the final chapters. The draw factor to this mangaka’s stories for me is her art, without a doubt. Anyone who sees Kugayama Shuusei would agree. I’m pretty interested to read Otome Gokoro and Dear Friends by her next, to see if they can up my love meter on Watanabe Ayu.
Hazuki Kanae is famous for her manga Suki-tte Ii na yo and its anime adaptation of it. I’ve also read her other works, Love Capsule, Love Stalking and Horikou Hanemono Ranger and they’re all good too. These three however, have smut in them, unlike Suki-tte Ii na yo. The common genres though, are romance and school life. Just a heads-up, the smut in the three I mentioned above are a little different from the usual ones. You’ll see what I mean if you read them. Generally, the story lines in Hazuki Kanae’s stories are about daily lives and people’s inner problems and their relationship with the people around them. The stories don’t have much drama in them because the characters are really mostly normal people. I really like Yamato and Mei as a couple in Suki-tte Ii na yo because they’re a pretty unusual pair, considering how they first met and eventually became a couple. The art is good and it kind of seems like Hazuki Kanae likes drawing guys with long hair, so long that she can draw them with ponytails. And it also seems like she likes having at least one ‘bad boy’ in her stories.
Kurumatani Haruko has a long list of manga in her book. The good ones that I’ve read so far include Kiken Junai D.N.A., Bishounen no Oheya, Akutou Danshi Collection, Bokura no Koi wa Shi ni Itaru Yamai no You de, Shounen wa Amaku Aisu, Kindan Wedding and Zenbu Chodai. The commonly used genres are comedy, romance and school life. I love authors who can come up with good comedic scenes that actually make me smile to myself or even laugh because hard as it is, comedy is not a genre that is easily executed out due to different people’s sense of humour. Some manga comedy can be really weak, poor and even lame such that I feel a little irritated after reading them. Kurumatani Haruko’s manga comedy is pretty good, usually coupled with embarrassing, awkward moments that result in huge uproars from the affected characters. Her stories are mostly light and cute but Bokura no Koi wa Shi ni Itaru Yamai no You de is an exception. I was really intrigued when I read it and I felt so sad for the female lead throughout the first few chapters. I feel that the art in most of her stories are drawn the cute way, with the girls having roundish-heart shaped faces and big eyes, as well as the guys. But in Bokura no Koi wa Shi ni Itaru Yamai no You de, I felt that the art was a little different, a little more mature. The characters had that feel and since I guess this one didn’t have comedy in it, there was no need to make them look so cartoonish and cute-looking like how she’d drawn her usual characters. I highly recommend reading manga by this author because her stories are light, cute, funny and you’ll just love them.
Let me say this first: Mitsuki Miko draws one of the most beautiful art I have ever seen for manga. The first manga of hers that I ever read was Aoi Kiseki and its story line and art blew me away in an instant. One particular drawing of Wakatsuki Ran in this story was so beautiful that it melted my heart when I saw it. Okay back to other works by Mitsuki Miko. Other good ones by her that I’ve read include Koi, Hirari, Love Knife, Koiiro Senritsu Double Ouji, Rensou no Aria and Mitsu Aji Blood. The common genres among most of her manga are drama and romance. The general story lines that Mitsuki Miko goes for are light-hearted cute stories with some drama. The romance can get you feeling all warm and fuzzy inside and feel touched by the characters’ determination and tenacity. The drama isn’t extreme so Mitsuki Miko’s stories are the ones I go for to feel happy and fuzzy inside because of the gorgeous art. Of course, a little heartbreak and drama wouldn’t hurt. But yes, like Mitsuki Kako, the stories they go for are similar and the art are both equally lovely so I really recommend going for her manga.
Amano Shinobu is famous for her manga LAST GAME, which I enjoy very much because the two main leads in that story are so cute together. I find the moments they have together rather cute and adorable too because even though their conversations clearly show each other more care and concern, the female lead is unaware of any further meaning to them. Some other works that I’ve read by her include Katakoi Triangle and Natsu no Kakera. The genres that her works have in common are romance and school life with comedy coming close behind. The story lines used according to what I’ve read so far are rather simple. The ‘flavouring’ to them are the characters’ interactions with one another with sweet gestures and funny, comedic moments. Amano Shinobu’s art kind of gives me the impression that her characters are all short (for some reason) and they all look kind of kiddish, if I might say. The teenage characters such as Yanagi and Kujou (who are supposed to be in college) actually look like taller/longer versions of themselves as kids. Not that I dislike it but the art just makes them seem that way to me. Natsu no Kakera was surprisingly enjoyable to read, it reminded me of Koizora by Mika.
Mitsuki Kako specialises in romance and school life stories and although I don’t think she’s very well known, her works are fabulous. Her art is GORGEOUS and some of her stories are really, really good. The art looks somewhat similar to Mitsuki Miko’s so I kind of wonder if these two are sisters or something. The ones I personally like are Kiss/Hug, Sora Log and Fly High!. Even though Fly High! was a One Shot and I don’t usually like One Shots, I didn’t expect to like it so much – after reading it, I was so intrigued by the use of volleyball in the story that I actually went to read up on the sport. Her stories are easy to read, without a high level of angst such that you wish you hit/murder somebody, which I like, on days when I just feel like reading a sweet romance story. A little more detail on Mitsuki Kako’s art: the guys’ faces are drawn kind of angular with sepet slit-like eyes like a cat’s and girls have heart-shaped faces with round eyes that aren’t too big, which actually makes them look cute.
Aikawa Saki has a few good stories that I enjoyed pretty much and the thing that drew me to my first manga that was by her was the art. Though not very beautiful, it was attractive enough to catch my attention. Boku kara Kimi ga Kienai, Iinchou no Himegoto, Ore-sama Ouji, Koyoi, Renai Joujou, Kimi to Kiss no Chigiri o and 16 Life are a few of the good stories I’ve read by her and they all contain romance with school life coming in next as the second most commonly used genre. Aikawa Saki’s stories mostly revolve around romance and the relationship developments are all pretty fast, making her kind of stories lean more towards the ‘unrealistic’ side. The character art looks more child-like so the characters actually don’t look very mature. Don’t let that deter you from reading her stories though, some of them have pretty good drama story lines in them. Overall, Aikawa Saki’s stories move at a relatively fast pace, so if you’re the impatient sort then I suggest that you go for this mangaka’s manga.
Yoshioka Ririko is the author/artist of Kare wa Tomodachi, a manga that twisted my heart and gave me a whole lot of heartbreak because of the unfortunate timeliness of things that happen in that story. I found it really good though, one of the better drama manga stories I’ve ever read and from there, I began to read up on the mangaka’s other works. A few that I’ve read include 99% Cacao and Tsuki to Taiyou no Piece. The commonly used genres are romance and school life with drama coming in after those. Currently, my only favourite from Yoshioka Ririko is Kare wa Tomodachi, as it is a developed and completed story but I’ll be eyeing Shiro no Eden next, another manga by her. I find the stories simple and sweet because the love portrayed in the stories between the main leads are the simple, innocent kind (with the exception of side characters). And with this kind of innocent, pure love, what’s there not to like? The art is kind of sketchy but attractive enough for me. The girls tend to have big eyes and similar personalities – shy, sweet and likeable. The guys aren’t very handsome when compared to other mangakas’ art but I guess their personalities score better.
So that’s my Guide to Shoujo manga: Authors version! I’m sorry it took so long to deliver this to you guys but let me know what you think about this guide and please don’t hesitate to give me your feedback on this. I hope you liked the guide and found it helpful and I’ll see you guys again probably next week ^^