Sunday, September 29, 2013

Happy Marriage?! Volume 1 by Maki Enjoji

Links: Goodreads Amazon B&N

The premise of an arranged marriage between a company head and a clerk is a perfect fairytale, but Happy Marriage?! has a couple of surprising takes on the gooey-eyed girl and cold boss man. Chiwa, the blushing bride, is a typical 22-year-old. She can be flaky and silly, but also practical and determined. I enjoyed her backbone when she did what she thought was right and followed through with her ideas, even when they didn't turn out quite like she thought they would. There is definitely some gender roles that are way too old - the slob husband and the neat wife always picking up after him - but in general the hero and heroine play fewer gender games than the typical romance manga.

Chiwa's thoughtfulness gives this series more depth than expected. Her husband, Hokuto, is also more complex than the broody bad boy or tortured hero who usually lead these romantic storylines. Hokuto is all alpha, but kind and open to ideas, especially when it comes to Chiwa's naivete. He respects Chiwa's decisions, even when he disagrees and does his best not to get in her way, even as he tries to help on his own. They are totally lovely and future volumes are not to be missed!

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