Love can come from anywhere
It's been a while since my last post, but I haven't just been studying away; I've been catching up on some anime and starting new ones before I get round to reviewing them, but I will try to get more content up quicker for my beloved readers ^^
Here we have Crayon Days. It's a lovely short and sweet story featuring two people who get closer through their love for art. It's different because I've never come across a manga that features a different kind of school since it's normally been a standard school or a boarding school, but this is a unique angle for a romance manga.
Our MCs of the story are Ichinose Shima and Akatuski Saji. Shima is a new student at the Tokyo Art School, which is a big change and step for her since she's a country girl who wants to prove she can be good at art. As for Saji, he's a famous student known for his impressive art skills. The two have contrasting personalities and artistic abilities; Shima is more child-like and naive which is portrayed through her drawings which seem to lack that depth and emotion people see in art, whereas Saji is the quiet type who's a perfectionist and shows that depth and emotion in his work.
This makes for a great story, and what's even better is that it's only 20 odd chapters long, so there's a lot of progress and content to go through at each part of the story, from when we meet Shima and her pet bird (a manga first for me!) and her first encounter with Saji, to seeing Saji and Shima's artistic abilities and relationship. It's quite unique too as things refer back to art somehow, like Shima choosing clothes (trying to spoil anything here), and because Shima's pet has some of the limelight too! Quite cute.
There are of course some romance cliches which feature, such as a potential love rival from both sides and friends who help the weaker party to be more confident, but with a short manga like Crayon Days, it helps with story progression so I can't exactly complain about them. I like them in all honesty.
Between finishing the manga and getting round to writing this, Crayon Days kind of reminded me of Kyou, Koi wo Hajimemasu. I'm sure you'll agree with me on this, but for those who have yet to read that, the quickest way to explain the story to that manga is we have a smart girl who meets a much cleverer and popular student after an unexpected encounter, and gradually the two fall in love through their competing personalities and life goals. They're both good reads and I recommend reading the other if you've read one of them, but Crayon Days is a slightly more child-like and condensed version...with an unfortunate downside.
Because it's a short manga, Crayon Days suffers from a rushed ending. It may have been accidental, but we end up with some jumps in the timeline which could have been sorted out with a couple of more chapters. It's a nice ending, don't get me wrong about that, but it just lacked content which kind of ruined the feel good factor it had. I did read some comments before starting and I didn't understand what people meant about it being good but then having an ending which confused people, but after reading Crayon Days, I now know.
This doesn't mean don't read it; I still recommend Crayon Days. Overall it's a short and sweet manga with a new angle to romance, but falls victim to being a short manga. But this shouldn't stop you from enjoying it, and you may not agree with my thoughts on the ending. Regardless, I recommend this to you if you're looking for a short manga with a great story. Enjoy!