Blue Box, Vol. 1

Viz. (Blue Box). Nov. 2022. 192p. pap. $9.99. ISBN 9781974734627.
Gr 8 Up–Love is the ultimate prize in this sports manga. Taiki harbors a crush on Chinatsu, star player on the high school girls’ basketball team. While Taiki plays on their school’s badminton team, he feels like Chinatsu is out of his league—something his closest friends comically make him aware of. While both Taiki and Chinatsu are preparing to play Nationals in their respective sports, Chinatsu appears at risk of losing her opportunity when her parents have to go overseas for work. Taiki gives her an impassioned speech, encouraging her to follow her dream, only to discover that she’s already found a solution (to his extreme embarrassment). In order to stay in Japan, Chinatsu will be staying with close friends of her parents, who happen to be Taiki’s parents. Suddenly keeping his feelings a secret just got even harder for Taiki. The story is action-packed when the leads participate in their respective sports, and full of laughs as Taiki tries his hardest to impress his crush, with expressive art that keeps the focus on the characters’ emotions.
VERDICT A fun sports romance that never has a dull moment.

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