Knight of the ice vol 1 by YAOYI OGAWA
Chitose works for a health and lifestyle magazine, writing articles and tracking down big stories on healthy supplements, among other things. But, she’s also the “good-luck girl” for Kokoro, a rising star in the world of Japanese figure skating. The two grew up together in Fukushima (which means they somewhat need to mask their “country-bumpkin” accents), and one of their favorite shows to watch as kids was Princess Lady Lala. Jokingly, Chitose “cast” a spell from Lady Lala on Kokoro before one of his performances, and he turned out the best performance of his life. Now, Chitose has to be at every competition to be able to put that spell on him. When the date of the Grand Prix and a major work interview land on the same dates, Chitose cannot choose between the two!
This volume was very cute and overall wholesome, despite the fact that Kokoro has so little faith in his own abilities. The relationship between Chitose and Kokoro is pretty sweet, but somewhere along the line, Kokoro's development paused - he's still very much the little kid Chitose grew up with, while she's gone out and gotten an adult job and adult responsibilities. There's definitely something a little darker going on behind Kokoro's pursuit of greatness, so maybe that will come out in later volumes.
Ogawa beautifully illustrates Kokoro's ice dancing and difficult jumps, with such faithfulness that at times I felt I was watching the Winter Olympics. Chitose and several other characters are not designed in the typical fashion with tons of long, flowing hair (in fact, Chitose prefers a tight bun), which sets this shōjo title apart from others in the genre.
There were a couple of inappropriate moments in this volume. Kokoro’s manager puts his hands on her boobs, and says he can touch them if he needs "release," as an alternative for having a girlfriend because he doesn’t have time for one. Aside from these infrequent fan-servicy moments, this story is beautiful and a sure bet for fans of Yuri on Ice.
Sara's Rating: 8/10
Suitability Level: Grades 8-12
Publication Date: March 10, 2020
ISBN: 9781632368102 (Paperback)
Tags: Rating: 8/10, Suitability: Middle School, Suitability: High School, Manga, Romance, Sports, Kodansha
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