Ima Koi: Now I’m in Love, vol. 1 | Review
Ima Koi: Now I’m in Love, vol. 1
By Ayuko Hatta
Viz Media, March 2022
Spring is almost here, love’s in the air, and for those looking for a cute story, Ima Koi: Now I’m in Love is perfect for the upcoming season.
Ima Koi starts with our main character, Satomi, being rescued by a fellow student, Yagyu, from a groper on the train. Discovering that Yagyu goes to the same high school as her, Satomi goes to thank him personally and develops a crush on her rescuer. Inspired by a previous missed opportunity of confessing her feelings to a crush, Satomi blurts out her feelings to Yagyu. To her surprise, Yagyu agrees to date her, marking the beginning of Satomi’s very first relationship ever!
The story was so sweet, it’s enough to give anyone cavities.
Seeing Satomi experiencing, as well as learning from, first love is so heartwarming and adorable. She knows nothing about being in a relationship (don’t we all sometimes), but gives her all in this newfound territory. However, what really makes this story refreshing is that Satomi is not being manipulated or treated like she’s a second-rate person. When Satomi asks him out, Yagyu instantly agrees in a calm manner. Yagyu treats her with patience, respect, and most importantly, as his equal. One example is when they are walking together, Yagyu notices that Satomi is walking behind him. She does this because she thinks being seen with her would embarrass him. Yagyu tells her he prefers that she walks beside him, and to never feel that she’s a burden to him. Another part that will endear Yagyu to the reader is when his friend calls Satomi a stalker, he corrects him and makes him apologize.
There is so much to enjoy in Ima Koi, except the ruffling of the girl’s hair trope, which annoys me to no end—but I digress. First, it smashes the dating rule that girls must wait for the guy to ask her out. Learning from her previous experience where she loses her chance to tell her crush how she felt, Satomi spurs herself into action and gets the guy. That’s really brave to do. With outdated dating norms taking a back seat, it shows that not only is it okay for girls to ask guys out, some guys actually are impressed by that. She’s not treated in a shameful way, besides the horrible stalker comment.
It’s a great, relatable story for shojo fans, and I look forward to seeing how Satomi’s relationship with Yagyu develops in volume two.
About Renee Scott
Renee Scott is a young adult librarian based in NYC, as well as a dedicated otaku and gamer. She is a lifelong fan of comics, anime, and manga. She can be found on Twitter at @libraryladynyc, and on her review blog, The Library Lady of NYC Reviews.
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