Thursday, April 21, 2016

Blossom Among Flowers Review

I guess this is my first time writing a review about a book. I don't know but it feels a little weird. Well, this book doesn't stray away from my usual reviews, manga (Japanese comics), because Blossom Among Flowers is a young adult fiction set in Japan too (more like a shoujo, yeah?).

This is my copy <3 Nice cover, right?
Blossom Among Flowers by Jay E. Tria is about Hikaru, a senior in high school who has this obsession with manga and Takeru, the popular genius guy in school. Their paths cross when they bumped into each other in a bookstore in one Saturday morning and they get even more closer when Takeru is asked by their English teacher to tutor Hikaru.

This is my short review without any spoiler: Blossom Among Flowers is a quick read, light, a little slow but entertaining. It gives you a familiar setting and drama of a manga set in modern Tokyo but it still offers you a different vibe from manga or TV dramas. It has that little romance, young love, and struggles. It has this charm that you'll come to like. I enjoyed reading it. The ending is open-ended, a little anti-climatic, but it's an ending that suited the story. It was memorable, sweet, and the type of ending that makes you sigh and hanging at the same time.

It is my first indie book in print by a Filipino author. I saw it by chance in wattpad and been wanting to read the rest of the story ever since but I don't own a credit card and I prefer paperbacks any day. I'm glad I tried searching it again and discovered it is available in print. You can find Jay E. Tria in the following sites:

Jay E. Tria || Twitter || Wattpad || I ordered my book here and you can also email her at
I'm not sure if the print copy is available for shipping internationally, but her books is also available in Amazon Kindle, and she is also in so if you have any questions, you can ask her there. She's awesome. The print copy is 250 pesos and the e-book is $2.99 in Kindle.

From here on, there would be spoilers.

I liked both characters right from the start. Hikaru and Takeshi are nice characters though there are certain aspects of their personality that I wish that could have been tackled more deeply in the story like that instance where Hikaru would hit her head violently. It is not a normal behavior and I wish I could have seen her more get over it. With Takeshi Hinata, I wanted to learn more about his background. Is his hair natural blonde? It looks like it but which side of the family did he get it from? Is he a half? That kind of things.

As for other other characters, I enjoyed reading about the twins in the first few scenes. Hikaru has a twin and his name is Shintaro. I liked him more than Hikaru. I hope he gets a story or more snippets if the author decides to write a sequel or a spin-off.

Hikaru and Takeru are also in a love square of a sort with Tetsuya, a Todai student and Eriko, a Waseda student. Both schools are prestigious universities in Japan. The former is a top public school, hard to get into kind, and the latter is a top private school (many famous icons in Japan goes to this school). Tetsuya enters the story as a practicing teacher in their school which is also a private school and Eriko is a part-timer in the book store where Hikaru and Takeshi are frequent customers. Tetsuya kinda likes Hikaru at first sight. He is undoubtedly interested in her. It is quite the same for Eriko with Takeshi but only after their first conversation. As the story goes, the plot deepens, and the revelations are revealed, I find it odd that Eriko considers herself as a friend of Hikaru. I came to dislike Eriko even if she salvaged herself in the end. She could have come easily as one of the bullies.

And, Tetsuya. Well, Tetsuya is a neutral character for me. I can't say I like and I can't say I hate him as much as I did with Eriko. But Tetsuya is an important character in the story. He's the one who planted the idea of becoming a teacher to Hikaru. This aspect of the story could have gone more too in my opinion. It's a miracle that Hikaru manages to enter Todai despite her low grades before but I can see Hikaru in literature rather than as teacher, perhaps an editor or something. Finding what she wanted to do could have been a subplot like what Takeshi did when he left Japan. Anyway, it's all just an opinion, what I wanted to see more.

On to my favorite parts of the story. Number one goes to the scene where Takeshi fell asleep in Hikaru's bed overnight.Next is their first kiss. I remembered sighing in content and squealing in muted voice in these scenes. 

Lastly, in the overview, I thought Hikaru and Takeshi's set-up was quite similar with Itazura na Kiss' Kotoko and Irie but Takeshi is kinder and Kotoko doesn't have that love for manga. It has also that hint of Hana Yori Dango with the rich parents, princess of a sort rival interest, and bullies but it was just those little thing. I know I tried to avoid comparing but I thought it would be nice to see BAF in live action. You know, real flesh Hikaru and Takeshi though there is also that one thing that bothered me-the shoes. I won't elaborate more because it's just probably me.

Overall, Blossom Among Flowers was a great light read. You can read it in one sitting especially if you're one of those voracious readers especially after you get past the release of the results for the exams. I'll be reading more of Jay E. Tria's books. Hope you pick one of her books and give it a try. It's worth it.

Manga, anime and live-action fans, if you liked Hana Yori Dango (Boys Over Flower) and Itazura na Kiss (Mischievous Kiss), you might also like this one.

There are other English written fiction novellas written by Filipino authors in romance class. Search for #romanceclass in twitter or tumblr or go to their website.

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