This month marks a year since publisher Kodansha started releasing O Maidens in your Savage Season in the West. In that time the series has finished its run in Japan and we’re only a few volumes away from being finished as well. Today I’m here to check out Volume 6, to find out if the manga still proves an entertaining read!
After a successful school festival in Volume 5, some of the girls of the Literary Club are experiencing the joys of being in love. Sonezaki has made up with boyfriend Amagi, while Kazusa is finally dating Izumi after he confessed his feelings to her. Of course, being in love isn’t perfect and it brings with it a new set of challenges for Kazusa and Izumi to overcome!
Having been friends since childhood, Izumi and Kazusa don’t know how to move their relationship forward from being friends to lovers. Neither of them wants to move too quickly and freak out the other, but they also have to consider what it means to be in love. To help clear up some of his thoughts Izumi turns to Nina for help, but unbeknownst to him, Nina is planning to take advantage of him to claim him for herself.
Elsewhere Hongo is dealing with frustrations of her own after discovering that her crush Tomoaki (the club’s adviser) is in love with a fellow teacher. Hongo wishes for Tomoaki to look at her the way he looks at the woman he loves, but even if she can’t gain his affections, she’s determined to gain some sexual experience with him before moving on.
The moral of this volume is showing the girls how much they still need to grow. This is especially true in Hongo and Nina, who are walking particularly dangerous paths as they chase after the people they’re attracted to.
Nina is warned by Momo that pursuing Izumi will break up the group’s friendship, but like any young teenager in love, Nina is blinded by desire. As an attractive woman, she’s not used to losing in the contest of love, so not only does she truly want to claim Izumi for herself, she’s frustrated by a ‘bland’ girl like Kazusa winning.
In my review for Volume 5 of the series, I commented that it would be nice to see Hongo and Momo given a chance to advance their stories and this entry certainly delivers on that! Momo’s story is closely tied to Nina’s and while it isn’t touched on until the end of this volume, it’s clear that things are close to a breaking point with Momo falling further and further in love.
With Sonezaki’s story seeming complete and Hongo’s almost certainly wrapping up now, O Maidens in your Savage Season is doing a good job of tying up loose ends before the final two volumes. Even six volumes in, Mari Okada and Nao Emoto are creating a compelling series that keeps you turning the pages all the way to the end.
I’m sure some readers will have some concerns about where Hongo’s story is leading her but don’t worry because Okada is handling the subject with the maturity and care it deserves. As a writer, she’s never afraid to tackle difficult subjects and that’s certainly one of the selling points of O Maidens in your Savage Season. They’re not just teenagers in love, but lifelike in how they’re portrayed and easy to relate to.
While the artwork hasn’t changed a great deal since the first volume, Nao Emoto has continued to do fantastic work in that department. As so much is deliberately left unsaid between the characters, this volume requires the art to convey the emotions of our cast. Emoto delivers this perfectly, while also balancing the drama out with some comedic moments. A personal favourite of mine is Sonezaki heartfeltly declaring that boys are, in fact, human just like the rest of us. It’s such an obvious thing to say but it’s delivered with so much determination that you can’t help but laugh and smile at our beloved member of the Literary Club.
As mentioned earlier Volume 6 of O Maidens in your Savage Season comes to the West thanks to Kodansha Comics and has been translated by Sawa Matsueda Savage. The translation reads well with no problems to speak of. Volume 7 of the series is scheduled for release in August, with the final volume following in October.
O Maidens in your Savage Season Volume 6 successfully brings some of its long-running storylines to completion. With only two volumes left, the series is beginning to set up for its conclusion which promises to be unforgettable.