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Aya Nakahara won the 2004 Shogakukan Manga Award for her breakthrough hit Love*Com, which was made into a major motion picture and a PS2 game in 2006. She debuted with Haru to Kuuki to Nichiyou bi, and her other work is Himitsu kichi.
Risa is the tallest girl in her high school class; Atsushi is the shortest boy. Their teacher nicknames them "All Hanshin-Kyojin" after a Japanese comedy duo with the same height differential--and the insults the two toss back and forth make it an apt comparison. Both react with horror to the persistent rumor that they're dating, but when they're not at each other's throats they find that they have a lot in common and become good friends. In this volume, Risa finally admits that she's developed a crush on Atsushi. When hints of this fail to penetrate Atsushi's brain, she has to come right out and tell him, and even then he can't believe it. While Atsushi ponders how to respond, Risa worries that she may have just ruined their relationship. The charm of this shojo manga lies partly in its comical, even uproarious dialog (particularly Risa and Atsushi's banter) and partly in the genuineness of its characters, situations, and emotions. Only a few elements seem forced (such as a girl with a crush on Atsushi turning out to be a cross-dressing boy). Accurately rated for teens, this winning series, running 13 volumes, is recommended for all collections.--S.R. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.