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YAKUZA IN LOVE. Gay Gangsters in the Japanese Mob Gettin' Some! A Yaoi Graphic Novel.
Feb 21, 2008 (Updated Feb 7, 2011)
by Mark Vaughan
a Very Helpful Review
by the Epinions community
Pros:Steamy gay romance in the violent background of organized Japanese mobs.
Cons:The sensibilities are for Japanese Women.
The Bottom Line: This story of manly love in a world of crime and violence is not for everyone. But if you like Yaoi, you'll love this book.
Yakuza in Love (ISBN 9781934496077) by Kano Shiuko.
Recommend this product?
This is a Yaoi novel. Yaoi, if you are not familiar with the term, is a Japanese art form of manga graphic novels depicting gay romances. They are are almost exclusively written by women for women. Written with a Eastern sensibility, which is much less hung up on sexual matters than the west, these books (And therefore this review) have the potential to shock. You have been warned!
Yaoi is much like Manga; there is a lot of it out there, and there are three categories: Good, good but containing so many Japanese allusions references and sensibilities as to by confusing to the West, and crap.
Yakuza is in the good category. It is not great literature, but it is fun and racy.
The story centers around Aoi Ichimura a silver badge in the Flower gang. He got his position because he saved the big bosses life, by accident. Ichimura, (I follow the Japanese convention of listing the Surname first, and personal name second.) is a handsome fellow with a facial scar from a childhood accident. He is assigned to underboss Yuji Sakiya.
Yuji Sakiya is a Yakuza of the old school. The death of the third Don and his wife on the eve of his going to prison had a profound effect on him. He has changed from a monster mobster to a man of deeper conviction. His wife's name was Aoi, the same a Ichimura's. He views Ichimura as horribly naive, but is attracted to his purity. Of course, the main romance is between these two.
Within the Flower gang Toru Hanabashi is the Don. He's a pervert, and wants to take the gang into the realm of hardcore porn. He sees Yuji as an impediment to those plans, and is therefore not very protective of him.
Add to this the Golden Star Syndicate, a rival of the Cosmos Syndicate, of which the Flower Gang is an affiliate. Their boys are out to destroy the Flower Gang, and Yuji is seen as a weak link.
There is lots of inter gang intrigue, male on male relationships between the members, and the awkward romance growing between Ichimura and Sakiya, made all the more difficult by Ichimura's conviction that no one could love someone as disfigured as himself.
The art is graceful, somewhat stylized, and delightfully minimalist. Black and white, like most yaoi, it produces an almost ethereal feel, which oddly makes the violence of the Yakuza feel more real, without having to rely on gore.
Yaoi is not for everyone, but if it's is your cup of tea, this is an excellent serving.
Try these Yaoi reviews:
Love Circles *(801)*Maiden Rose 1 *(801)*Maniac Shorts Shot *(801)*Gay's Anatomy *(801)*Happy Yaoi Yum Yum *(801)*The Loudest Whisper *(801)*Lover's Flat *(801)*Wild Butterfly *(801)*Shards of Affection*(801)*Romantic Illusions *(801)*Ruff Love*(801)*Thunderbolt Boys Excite Vol 2*(801)*Thunderbolt Boys Excite Vol 1*(801)*Pathos*(801)*Pathos II*(801)*The Crimson Spell 2 *(801)*The Crimson Spell *(801)*Incubus *(801)*Incubus Volume 2*(801)*Incubus Volume 3*(801)*Love + Alpha*(801)*Yellow*(801)*Yakuza in Love 3 *(801)*Yakuza in Love 2 *(801)*Yakuza in Love *(801)*Beyond Scandalous Seiryo University *(801)*Return to Seiryo University *(801)*Scandalous Seiryo University *(801)*Wild Rock *(801)*Man's Best Friend *(801)*Shinobu Kokoro *(801)*Midaresomenishi: A Legend of Samurai Love *(801)*Stallion *(801)*Gerard & Jaques 2 *(801)*Gerard & Jaques 1
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