It is great to see that Australia is finally winning some gold medals! Congratulations all round! I was kind of concerned that New Zealand was above us on the medal tally, but now that that is no longer the case!
I'm finally back at uni, which is why I have been kind of MIA over the last few days, the first week is always hectic getting ready and starting that first week each semester.
I have managed to finish reading Paradise Kiss by Ai Yazawa. It is complete at 5 volumes, and is also the sequel to Gokinjo Monogatari. The story follows Yukari (Caroline), a high school student who takes her studies seriously in order to please her parents. She is shown to lead a plain life, her only pleasure coming from interacting with her crush Hiroyuki. One day she is "escorted" by a group of students from Yazawa arts school (lol) and try to coerce her to be their model for their upcoming competition. At first, Caroline declines, but she soon accepts when she discovers that these students have goals and dreams that they are trying to achieve, something that Caroline finds she lacks. Once she gets to know this group of people, she befriends them all, especially Miwako (the younger sister of Mikako from the original) and George, who she develops romantic feelings for. It is revealed that Miwako and Arashi, who were childhood friends, now dating, and Hiroyuki were all neighbours and childhood friends, but stopped talking some time ago when Arashi became jealous. As the series progresses, the three rebuild their friendship. Eventually, Caroline and George act on their feelings, beginning a relationship of sorts. Meanwhile, Caroline realizes that she has a passion for modelling. She decides she will pursue it as a career and fights with her mother as a result, causing Caroline to run away from home. Caroline finally gets her mother's consent to pursue modelling on the condition she finishes high school. Over this time, Hiroyuki and Caroline become good friends, with Hiroyuki developing feelings for Caroline. After the competition is over, George and co try to sell their clothes, but with little success due to the clothes 'avant garde' style. After some persuasive talks with his friends and father, George decides to go to Paris to work in a couture house. Caroline is given the choice to go with him, but she declines, saying she will start modelling in Japan with making it to Paris as her goal. They ultimately break up. The story ends with a monologue from Caroline who is now 28 (so 10 years have passed), who talks about how she enjoyed a successful local modelling career, but was never good enough to reach Paris or reach George, with her stating that them meeting again 'became nothing more than a pipe dream'. The story ends with Caroline getting picked up by her fiance, who is none other than Hiroyuki, who has since become a doctor. The End.
I found this story quite amazing. It is classified as a tragedy, and I am blown by how sad the story is without a tragic event occuring (death etc). I feel this is a very realistic look on love in life, because although Caroline and George did nothing wrong, they couldn't end up together, instead both choosing to go after their dreams. It shows how not every ending can be happy, although I did find it bittersweet, because there is nothing wrong with Hiroyuki either. I actually wouldn't mind seeing more stories like this. I admit, I was on the verge of tears at the end because it does show how one of two choices can have an adverse affect on our lives and how the choices show their results over time. I would deffinately read this one again some time.
Next on the list is Basara, so this one could take a while
Anyway, that's about it for now, until next time :)