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Paradise kiss. Volume 3
Yazawa, Ai
Adult Fiction YAZAWA

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From Publishers' Weekly:

Beautiful, long-legged Yukari should be preparing for her entrance exams, but she can't tear herself away from the excitement at the Paradise Kiss fashion studio. Ever since the gang of students-cum-fashion designers invited her to be their model, Yukari has been fascinated by them. There's George, the possibly bisexual head designer who's romancing her, and Miwako, a golden-haired darling who's becoming a solid friend. Miwako's boyfriend, Arashi, is sarcastic but sweet, and Isabella, a gorgeous transsexual, is gracious and welcoming. Is it any wonder Yukari will do anything to join the party? She gets her chance to prove her mettle when George decides to design a beaded dress and Yukari volunteers to help. Soon enough, Yukari's a regular at the studio, but it's not improving her romance with the aloof George. Fashion isn't nearly as fickle, however, and eventually Yukari quits school and is subsequently kicked out of her house, all in the name of joining the world she loves best. With pages full of outrageous fashions and romantic reversals, all intricately inked, this manga makes the most of its traditionally feminine topic. Yet Yazawa is confident enough to play with it, endowing the characters with an awareness that they're playing their lives out in a comic book. Yukari announces she's the main character on the first page, and when she learns George might be sleeping with her hairdresser, she wonders if this is "really the kind of manga we want this to be?" The intelligence behind the dialogue holds the wild plot together, and like Yukari, readers will find this world an almost irresistible escape. (July) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

From Library Journal:

One of Tokyopop's "Authentic Manga," this series tells the story of high school student Yukari Hayasaka, who has fallen in with a group of fashion design students who call themselves Paradise Kiss. During crunch time before college entrance exams, she had agreed to be their model for a school fashion show. This led not only to her running away from home and deciding to become a professional model but also to a tumultuous love affair with group leader George, a seemingly cold, bisexual fashion-design prodigy. The group also includes doll-like Miwako; her boyfriend, the punk guitarist Arashi; and Isabella, a kindly male transvestite. In this volume, Yazawa tells of the big fashion show and its outcome and introduces Kaori, a possible rival for George's affections. Yazawa puts a great deal of detail into her stylish black-and-white renderings of clothes, and she breaks the fourth wall occasionally with some amusing self-referential humor. Tokyopop originally published this series with a "13+" age designation, but after a pair of steamy sex scenes between teenagers in Volume 3, the entire series has been re-marked "16+". Recommended for larger adult collections. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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