Dragon Girl Volume 2 by Toru Fujieda
I think it was a good decision for Yen Press to go with the omnibus format for this five volume series. I enjoyed this series very much, but if I was reading it spaced out over five volumes my interest might have started to wane a little bit. Being able to sit down and devour huge hunks of shoujo goodness with this slightly quirky manga made me enjoy it even more. Even though many of the plot elements in Dragon Girl evoke typical shoujo cliches, I am still amused by the odd and humorous elements Fujieda inserts in her story. For example, the hottie on the cover that heroine Rinna is embracing isn’t a high school boy who has a crush on her – it is her long lost father Sakuya, the globe trotting former traditional cheerleader captain/anthropologist. I think Sakuya, with his long hair, creative accessorizing, and breezy attitude would easily take the title in a coolest manga Dad contest.
Rinna and her friends in the cheering group struggle with getting their club officially reinstated and dealing with their rival high school. Rinna confesses her crush on childhood love Subaru, but finds out that a romance with him is impossible. Yatome and Rinna grow even closer but it seems like cheering captain Hasekura might finally get up the nerve to tell Rinna how he feels. There’s nothing particularly earth-shattering about this title, but it is great comfort reading. I challenge anyone not to enjoy a manga where the heroine’s response to rumors being spread about her is to stand outside the school with a megaphone yelling her side of the story in order to set the record straight. Even thought the ending of Dragon Girl was predictable, I enjoyed seeing Hasekura’s reaction when he was finally able to meet Sakuya, his cheering idol. Also, when Hasekura finally changes his “manly” look, the response of the female students to actually being able to see his shaven face was hilarious. Even the evil scheming student council president doesn’t turn out to be so bad after all. Dragon Girl lets the reader momentarily escape into a world filled with camaraderie and costumed high school students yelling their hearts out. I finished this manga with a smile on my face.