Yokoi is constantly distracted by the antics of her neighbor in class, Seki. Seki has all sorts of supplies to carry out elaborate scenes. He sets up a domino course; he plays Japanese Chess and manipulates the pieces to tell his own story; He builds pillar of sand; he plays with cats. All the while, Yokoi gets in trouble for not paying attention or taking notes properly. But Seki? Suddenly his desk is clear of all toys and his notes are out, and he’s giving Yokoi a reproachful look for not paying attention. Most of this series is told in the thoughts Yokoi has as she examines the games Seki plays.
This story is super cute, although the concept isn't one that could be sustained for very long, hence there are only ten volumes. Nevertheless, Morishige is to be commended for the variety in scenarios that Seki carries out. The art style is very cute, as you can see from the cover illustrations. This story can serve as a cautionary tale for anyone who lets their classmates distract them enough to not pay attention, but also to teachers who yell at distracted students and not the distractors.
Vertical's rating is All Ages. The good-natured humor and situations Yokoi narrates have nothing inappropriate for the younger audiences. Some high school students might appreciate the silliness of Seki, but it is a very light-hearted title that some might gloss over.
Sara's Rating: 8/10
Suitability Level: Grades 4-12
Tags: Rating: 8/10, Suitability: Elementary School, Suitability: Middle School, Suitability: High School, Manga, Realistic Fiction, School-Age
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