Off the Shelf: Library Wars, issue #8

Library Wars: Love & War, Vol. 8 (Library Wars: Love & War, #8)Library Wars: Love & War, Vol. 8 by Kiiro Yumi
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Kasahara goes to meet Satoshi, Tezuka’s brother, who promises to pull some strings and call off her inquiry if she joins his faction. Kasahara refuses him, but not before Dojo appears to “rescue” her. (Not that she really needed it but what else does a secret princely admirer do?) Kasahara is cleared from suspicion without any outside help but Satoshi isn’t done with her. He sends her a letter that reveals Dojo is her “prince,” a Library Defense Force member who saved her from pro-censorship forces 6 years ago & who she’s idolized since. Terrified of the implications, Kasahara snaps at Dojo when he tries to find out what Satoshi’s letter said & Komaki intervenes, allowing her to reveal her fears to his sympathetic ear. But all of this heartache & romantic trouble takes a backseat when Marie has a pervy encounter with a creepy patron. The task force assembles, determined to trap the offender with Kasahara & Shibazaki as bait.

While readers can finally breath a sigh of relief, Yumi is determined not to let us get everything we want just yet. Kasahara finally knows the truth, but Dojo doesn’t realize it yet, creating a conflict straight out of a romantic comedy–you know, the kind that involves judo-flipping your crush into a table so he won’t find out your secret. Kasahara’s conversation with Satoshi displays every quality that we love her for: loyalty, firm belief in her ideals, determination to think the best of people. But she’s matured nicely into someone whose not so brash as to immediately resort to brawling. (Which makes her freak-out with Dojo funnier & a little sad too.) Her lonely realization about Dojo’s true identity is kinda heartbreaking, especially after all the bonding & support that the team has offered one another lately. But Komaki steps in at just the right moment& makes sure Kasahara doesn’t totally pull away from the others.

I’m not entirely sure how the plotline with the library perv is going to play out but I guess we’ll see in the next issue. Satoshi–there’s something particularly creepy about him as well. His efforts to win Tezuka over to his side are, um, maybe just a little fetish-y. Like it’s not just about proving his side is right or getting his brother to see his point–Satoshi seems to want to dominate him or at least win Tezuka’s idolization back. I don’t know; I’m just getting this weird vibe off of him & he seems kind of gross to me, not matter how cute he’s drawn. Issue #9 promises to be interesting!

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