|latest release in Japan:||30th chapter (22 V)
|ch31 release date:||22 VII 2014|
Ahhhhh HWSK 29 chinese scans are out! I’ve started working on the translation but it’ll take a while, so here’s a rough summary first:
I’m gonna start with my favorite BL manga of all time, Hana wa saku ka by Hidaka Shoko.
- NSFW for later chapters
- Romance / slice of life
- Ongoing, currently at ch 28, compiled to 4 volumes so far
- Licensed in English by Juné under the name “Does the flower blossom?” (current release date for vol. 1 is Oct 29th, although it has been pushed back 2,000 times because Juné sucks balls so don’t bet on it)
The major actors are Sakurai-san, a tired middle-aged company employee, and Youichi, a 19 year old art student with zero social skills, so it’s super cute by default. At first Sakurai thinks Youichi is rude and unpleasant, but as he gets to know him better he realizes that he simply doesn’t know how to act around other people. Both of Youichi’s parents were artists too and he looks like the spitting image of his father, so he’s spent his entire life in their shadow — a situation made worse by both of his parents dying in a car crash when he was a child, leaving him to live in a giant boarding house his father owned and which he now has to maintain (with the help of some relatives and friends of the family). Daddy issues galore! With Sakurai’s influence he starts making friends and becoming more social.
Most of the story is told from Sakurai’s point of view, which is pretty rare in this genre. In the beginning of the story Sakurai is simply your average dude with no particular interest in romance, and it’s fucking fantastic following his thoughts when he slowly realizes that he’s got the hots for Youichi. Youichi takes a lot longer to realize his feelings, as he’s not had friends before and thus has some difficulty in recognizing different kinds of affection, but when he gets there it’s beautiful (also I identify strongly with characters who don’t understand anything about social interaction so You-chan is my baby).
Also Sakurai is hot as hell. A++++ oyaji, 10/10 would ask for hand in marriage.
Everything in this series is SLOW. So goddamn fucking slow that I can’t even count the hours I have spent wailing about nothing happening. Even the publishing schedule is slow as hell and I’m telling you this manga has literally tortured me for years (it started serialization in 2007 so you do the math). BUT, because it’s so agonizingly slow when it comes to romance, we get a very deep understanding of the characters, all their reactions and emotional responses feel completely natural and logical, and when things finally start happening it feels SO GOOD OH MY GOD. I mean when Sakurai and Youichi kissed for the first time I screamed aloud and kept on squealing for hours alone in my room because I was just so genuinely happy.
So far there have also been two drama CDs, which are awesome and super hot so you should probably check those out too. Sakurai’s voice is provided by BL veteran Morikawa Toshiyuki, and Youichi’s by the adorable Kondou Takashi. Unfortunately the last time I checked the first drama CD was out of print, boo. :<
But, like, read the manga. You’ll love it, I know I do. I’m actually debating whether it’s my favorite BL manga or my favorite manga in general. Also, there’s this great blog you should follow to keep you posted about the publishing schedule and scanlations and what have you.
Hidaka Shoko’s other works are worth checking out too, I love her/them (Hidaka-sensei draws and there’s another person who writes) so much it aches and her art is perfect and the characters are usually adults so it’s lovely.
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Chil Chil (BL manga news and review site) announced the winners of 2014 BL Awards! Hana wa Saku ka was recognized in the following categories:
Hidaka Shoko also placed 2nd in the Comic Artist category.
Congratulations to the winners!
I actually had this prepared for some time, but I still didn’t compare the last chapter… so for the time being I decided to cut it in half and here’s the first part.
Like Hidaka Shoko said on her blog, she made many changes to the tankoubon version. Rearranged panels, added scenes, cut some dialogues, added some new ones, changed some expressions, and of course, added background. Here are some of them.
Spoilers, obviously. If there’s a translation, be aware that it might not be 100% correct and I could mistranslate it (just wait for SuBLime or German versions). It’s also translated kind of freely, so… but the meaning should be there (I hope). There are some nsfw images.
♩ *゜・+♪*゜・+ ♫ *゜・+♬*゜・+ ♩ *゜・+♪*゜・+ ♫ *゜・+♬*゜・+
(★｀・∀・)ﾉHappy birthday♪Hidaka Shoko sensei☆（´艸｀☆)
♫ *゜・+♬*゜・+ ♩ *゜・+♪*゜・+ ♫ *゜・+♬*゜・+♩ *゜・+♪*゜・+
I think… I actually somehow managed to place that order, so I should probably get this month’s Rutile magazine in about one week time, yay! I’ll take pics of ch29 if the scans aren’t out by then. Unfortunately, I don’t own a scanner.
Anyway, replies under the cut:
As per usual, 8 random pages from the Chinese scanlation of ch29 (courtesy of 3n5b):