Manga: Choco Strawberry Vanilla

Motivation for blogging has been on wane recently due to the mangas and fanfiction I’ve been continuously on. It’s high time I clear that backlog that’s built up since the last actual actual post, oops.

Yaoi is the one genre I have sporadic cravings of and can continuously read one after the other for days. The thing is that after reading so many, a lot of them just kind of blend together and I forget most of them almost immediately. Here’s one that stuck though.

Manga: Choco Strawberry Vanilla 「チョコストロベリーバニラ」

Volume cover

Volume cover

Choco Strawberry Vanilla is a Yaoi, psychological, smut drama by Psyche Delico. It was serialised in 2011 and is complete with 7 chapters that have been compiled into 1 tankonon volume. Extras for the main story by the mangaka are included in separate doujinshi, as mentioned on Baka-Updates Manga. It was adapted into a drama CD in Jun 2014. Choco Strawberry Vanilla with hence forth be referred to as CSV.

Hiroi always shared what he liked, whether it be things or people, with his childhood friend Take. Take always accepted Hiroi’s affections without question. Mine, with his deep love for Hiroi, accepts both of them. The relationship of these three classmates was in a good balance, but because of a subtle change in their feelings, this balance slowly gets unhinged…?! [Baka-Updates Manga]

WARNING: GuyxGuy. Quite explicit with many close up panels, but it’s not high in detail and dicks aren’t clearly drawn. If you’re okay with guyxguy relationships, the next step you’d need to consider before reading CSV is whether you’re okay with polyamorous relationships. And a little bit of sadistic violence.

I’ve realised that I can’t share my thoughts on this manga without spoilers, so uh… I apologise for little spoilers ahead.

I don’t remember reading many polyamorous yaois. I haven’t read many polyamorous fanfiction either, whether including girls, guys, or a mix of both. I’ve read fanfiction on threesomes I really like, but have generally preferred reading about no more than two people together. This is just a personal preference.

The first image I saw of the manga was just of the front cover and I kept thinking that Hiroi (the guy on the back) would end up losing two of the most important people to him as they got together and he got left out. I also had a few other mixed feelings on how Mine and Take’s minds worked.

What really got me about CSV was how by the end of the story, the three characters had established something of  a comfortable, clear, relationship with each other; The kind of relationship where not everyone needs to say “I love you” to each other to understand and know that they need the other 2 parts for a whole.

CSV chp 4 cover

CSV chp 4 cover

CSV’s art is clean and sparse —for lack of a better word— with minimal to no backgrounds. With most of the story happening in interiors and them having sex etc., there isn’t much need for great backgrounds anyway. Contrasting toning is few and far-between and there’s an all-around mellow atmosphere throughout the whole manga even with the sadistic tendencies of its characters.

If you’re looking for cute, fluffy relationships, you’d need to look somewhere else. There’s nothing that makes your heart clench and teeth ache from the cotton-candy sweet, but there are cute moments, usually in the form of characters’ (more like just one character’s) expressions. Also, if I remember correct, there’s sex every chapter. But that’s probably nothing new if you’re the kind of person that jokes about yaoi stereotypes and trends XD

There is a plot, and there is development. But who are we kidding, many of us read yaoi for the sex anyway. And CSV’s sex is hot.

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