So unsurprisingly there was a lot of books that didn't make it onto the recommended reading list for 2017. Many stories ended up being left out due to them being ongoing series, stories I read but didn't care for, or there just weren't enough volumes released for me to get a feel for the series. As such I figured I would try something new. This will be the first in a series of posts in which I will give my thoughts a series I am currently reading. My hope is that doing so will help motivate me into doing more posts as well as give the opportunity to go into detail about the issues I have with some series. I will do my best to avoid spoilers though some stories will require me to go into more detail than others.
After Hours is a yuri manga written and drawn by Yuhta Nishio and published by Viz Media. The story follows a woman named Emi Ashiana who has been dragged to a night club by a friend that soon ditches her. While trying to find her she is hit on by some random guy only to be saved by Kei the DJ for the club and one the hosts for the evenings party. After following Kei back to her apartment the two end up spending the night together. Soon afterwards Kei begins to introduce Emi to music and the world of club performances, eventually Emi ends up joining Kei's circle of friends and even helping them with performances.
As stated in a previous post this is one of the stories that marks Viz Media's entry into the yuri fandom. Overall the story is decent. The vast majority of this volume is about Emi and her introduction into Kei's world and the world of music. It does on alright job of introducing the characters and building the world around them. The interaction between Emi and Kei is decent though the romance between the two is a bit lacking. The art work, while nothing special, is passable with the author going for a more mature take on typical moe designs. Honestly this really reminds of a manga called Octave (I recommend it.) that I read a few years ago in which a former idol ends up having a one night stand with a musician. One of the things I like about this story is how the romance is handled. A lot of the yuri genre revolves around young love and a lot of they time they end up keeping their feelings from each other. That is not the case with this one as both Emi and Kei are quite accepting of each other though the relationship comes off as more of a 'friends with benefits' type deal. As stated before the romance between the two is barely touched on aside from the one night stand and a few other moments but the characters and story are still being worked on so that is a minor complaint. I like how it explains some of the concepts off the club performance scene though as I am not apart of that scene I have no idea if it is accurate. This in my opinion is a decent start for the series and while it's too early to tell if the story will really grab me I am interested to see how it will continue to develop. If you can find it for cheap give it a shot as there is much worse out there.