Thursday, April 22, 2010

Gentlemen's Alliance Volume 11 by Arina Tanemura

In return for a business loan of 50 million yen, the prestigious Kamiya family gave their daughter Haine away to the Otomiya family. Haine, now an Otomiya, is appointed to the student council of the exclusive Imperial Academy, a private school for the aristocracy. Even though Haine is of proper lineage to be on the council, she finds herself struggling to find her place among the many secrets of its elite members, especially those of the president who holds her heart--Shizumasa Togu, aka "the Emperor." Haine goes to Shizumasa and Takanari's grandfather, the head of the Togu family, to ask him to release the twins from their fate. He tells her she must pass the same trial the twins went through for determining the Togu heir. Haine agrees, but little does she know that a former friend is now out for her life.

So What Do I Think!?
Arina Tanemura's art is incredibly detailed, and no doubt beautiful to anyone who sees it, but I think it's getting a little worn on me. After reading and collecting all seven volumes of Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne and Full Moon o Sagashite (which were very good when I read them) I found this to be slightly disappointing story wise. Perhaps it's because the main protagonists look like copies of her previous main protagonists. It makes me wonder why she can make a variety of side characters in each series, but her protagonists remain virtually indifferent. Final volume-wise, the ending was of course fast packed action, not in a bad way, but still kinda rushed. Everyone is bipolar as usual, so yeah...

Chapter 45. Leaving One's Grief in the Night So in this chapter, basically everyone helps Haine get to the head of the Togu family, and she demands of him to release the brothers from the traditions. So this chapter was a little cliche for my tastes. Her friends get stationed off at each obstacle and helps her get to the final boss. There's a random scene with Ushio and Senri, also kind of corny.

Chapter 46. The Happy Ending
Haine does the test and Toya comes out of no where with a gun and is all murderous and suicidal. Haine is hurt, but she perseveres and jumps into the pond off a cliff. I love the illustration here, it's very emotional. She finds both stones despite the impossibility. Haine passes the test, but is knocked out unconscious by the end of the chapter. I think it was a nice chapter, so not much to comment on besides Toya's uber bipolarness annoying the brain cells out of me

Final Chapter. This is the End if You're Going to Give Up, but if You're Not, Let Us Walk Together
Haine gets married to Takanari, and everyone falls in love. I found it hilarious when Toya catches the bouquet. After Shizumasa's disappearance, he comes back to live with the newly wedded couple (which presents itself as an obvious problem) and everyone is happily in love by the end of the chapter.

Bonus Story
It basically goes over everyone's relationships and confirms them which would have lead up to the final chapter. Not bad, just satisfies everyone's desires to know what happened and how.

The Globe of the Sea Nocturne An unrelated story about a student who loves her teacher, and comes to school just to meet him. However, it turns out that she's been sleepwalking, but he eventually finds a way to love her nevertheless. Cute, short, but kinda weird at the same time. Once again I didn't have much to comment on in this volume.

Bonus Story. The Water Bubble Princess A little more on the relationship with Ushio and Senri, haha, Senri is all jealous of Ushio's first. It took me a couple of reads to understand the whole point that Tanemura was getting across, and I still barely get it. I like the couple, so that's okay haha.

I'm just glad that I finished buying the series, and I think I won't buy anymore Arina Tanemura works from here on out. Sorry to disappoint you Tanemura fans, but my love for her work has faded.