“Crushing Love” is a yaoi anthology by Ritsu Natsumizu. One of the stories deals with Kuroda, who has to deal with an ex-lover begging for help. Since the guy betrayed Kuroda, he comes up with a bet: he’ll put five million yen on a park bench. If they return the money instead of stealing it, Kuroda will help him. However, when Kuroda does meet up with the person who’s stolen the money, he decides to help him out. Two other stories deal with what happens when somebody falls in love with their sex buddy.
The artwork is decent and there are no rape scenes that plague a lot of yaoi manga. The idea that the main character accidently finds true love during a passive aggressive plan of revenge is interesting and oddly sweet. But the author should have up the stakes of the story by having the couple find out why the guy needs help, like that he owes a huge debt to the yakuza or that another jilted lover has hired a hit man to take him down. It would have been fun to see Kuroda realize that even if he wants to punch out his ex-lover, he doesn’t want him to die a horrible death. The stories dealing with unexpected complications of casual sex partners is pretty interesting and does happen in real life. While the stories do have happy endings, it would have been pretty interesting if the author had explored the philosophical and societal aspects of casual sex. It also could’ve explored the irony of the fact that even if you’re lucky enough not to get demonized by society for it, they’re not going to think that you’re a very good person; even if the people who are doing it are good hearted people. Honolulu yaoi fans will find this to be a decent manga.
Buy “Crushing Love” at Amazon.com