Wednesday, November 26, 2008

We Were There: Volume 1

From The

Manga Reviews
We Were There: Volume 1
By Leroy Douresseaux
Nov 9, 2008 - 7:08:54 PM

Viz Media
Writer(s): Yuki Obata, Nancy Thistlethwaite, Tetsuichiro Miyaki
Penciller(s): Yuki Obata
Inker(s): Yuki Obata
Letterer(s): Inori Fukuda Trant
ISBN: 9781421520186
$8.99 US, $10.50 Canada, 192pp, B&W, paperback

We Were There 1 cover image courtesy of

Rated “T+” for “Older Teen”

At her new school, teen Nanami Takahashi falls for Motoharu Yano, a sly boy with carefree ways who is also the most popular boy in class (if not the entire school). In spite of her determination not to, Nanami is falling in love with the occasionally sarcastic Yano. When she discovers that Yano is grieving the death of his girlfriend who died the year before, Nanami suddenly finds herself competing with the memory of a first love.

THE LOWDOWN: A reader could judge We Were There, Vol. 1 as a bit of a downer. We Were There (originally titled, Bokura ga Ita) is a complex drama masquerading as a teen romance. Creator Yuki Obata accepts that teenagers in dramatic fiction can be as complex and maddeningly complicated as adult characters. In her narrative, life isn’t easy, and neither is falling in love. A manga that pits the attractive elements of romance with the hard edges of drama is refreshing. The fits and starts of love, however, sometimes cause We Were There to have a frequently awkward and uneven pace.

POSSIBLE AUDIENCE: Older readers of VIZ Media’s “Shojo Beat” line of manga may like the heavier romantic drama of We Were There.


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