Finishing off the year on a high note. I really liked this one; just like with the previous volume, the book is only an improvement coming from the (excellent) anime. Granted, when I recently rewatched the series, I was watching without subtitles and my comprehension is still not perfect by any means, but there were some things which I’m pretty sure were simply not included (it seemed like any non-dialogue exposition stood a high chance of not making the cut).
Anyway, I was excited to read this one in particular because Tomoe is my favorite of the girls so far and I was excited to see her again. While the show does a good job of demonstrating her struggles and motivations, I do feel like it did a poor job of explaining why Sakuta would go along with her goofy pretend-boyfriend scheme, but just the simple explanation that she reminded him of the days when his sister was having trouble at school did the trick.
The rest of the book was nice. Sakuta doesn’t have the same chemistry with Tomoe as he does with Mai (okay, he really doesn’t have any chemistry with her and I get that that’s the whole point) but their dynamic is fun and I like the way he gently bullies her into esteeming herself the way she deserves. I also like that Sakuta involves Mai in the whole affair from the beginning as opposed to trying to pull it off without involving her. Another nice bonus in the book that I think they skipped in the anime: making it obvious that Yuuma is aware of Rio’s feelings for him, but pretends to not notice due to the fact that he already has a girlfriend. It makes his character a bit more interesting coming into the next arc.
I’m not sure when I’ll pick up the next book but I definitely will be continuing the series. I read this one pretty slowly so my memory of the whole thing is not super strong but I enjoyed myself all throughout it and I’m still looking forward to reading beyond the end of the adapted material.