For some reason, I was browsing through Pinterest and a couple pages of manga popped up on my home page. Being the curious cat that I am, I decided to check it out. I didn’t recognize it as anything I knew. However, it immediately caught my attention. The way the characters interacted with each other, I was hooked from the one page i read. I decided to google the manga to see how to obtain it and no matter how hard I looked, I couldn’t seem to find a physical copy (I personally do not like reading books on a computer. There is just something about thumbing through the pages of a book). I eventually decided just to read Namaikizakari on my phone (even worse than a computer screen).
After reading a few chapters, I found Namaikizakari is a love story about a high school girl named Yuki Machida. She is the oldest in her family and has gotten used to not letting anything bother her. She is the manager of her high school basketball club. However, soon everything begins to change when first year, Shou Naruse, joins the team. He is the epitome of basketball all star. He is super tall and really fast. He is just naturally talented when it comes to basketball. It doesn’t take long before Naruse is completely in love with Machida. He begins the attempt in pursuing her, but it seems to be a more difficult task than expected because she thinks he is just messing with her.
The only thing that really impacted me negatively with Namaikizakari is the fact that there really isn’t a lot depth in the story. Yes, it is a love story so the driving factor is the relationship between Naurse and Machida. However, it does seem to fall short from time to time. It seems to be the same concepts happening over and over. Oh, other guy is interested in Machida, Naruse gets jealous, then they confess how much they love each other. Wash. Rinse. Repeat. The other thing I don’t really care for is how some of the characters look VERY similar. It becomes rather difficult to figure out who is who, especially when they are on the same page at the same time.
On the other hand, the characters all have their own personalities that you can’t help but like. Naruse, although he doesn’t show much emotion and is indifferent about pretty much everything, when he does show his feelings, a layer of ice just melts away. To be honest, the relationship between the two is probably one of the best relationships I have witnessed in any anime, manga, or even in real life. They are so adorable it is sickening. Machida and Naruse are 100% releationship goals. Machida is so oblivious to everything, it is almost cringe worthy. It is amazing the kind of situations she could avoid if she just had a little bit of common sense. There are other characters as well, but considering I didn’t mention them….if you are curious you will have to read it yourself.
Overall, Namaikizakari kept me very interested. I have been on a romance kick recently, so maybe that is why I found it so intriguing. The love of the characters made me want to binge read. Like I said, Naruse will steal your heart in a second. All of his little quirks just drew me in. I also love the atmosphere of the story. Everything about it could easily be someone’s actual love story and to me that makes me smile just a little. Because I don’t really have a lot to say, I feel like that should effect the rating I give this story.
This manga is still ongoing so I haven’t even read all of it yet. There are currently 99 chapters available in English (that I could find). I am current as far as I am aware. I will be sure to update this review as soon as I finish the actually series.