Manga Review: Nineteen, Twenty-One
June 21, 2011 3 Comments
Author: Yohan (John)
Artist: Kim Hye Jin (Jenna)
Genre: Romance, Shoujo, Slice of life
Format: Manhwa (read from right to left)
Do you ever feel like your a bird with broken wings and behind your flock, You still move on hoping for a speedy recovery to someday to regain flight to the endless sky above? Yun-Lee is a girl who lost track of time due to a unforeseen accident that took two years of her life away. Before the accident Yun-Lee was only nineteen years old and considered not yet an adult in society standards till reaches the age of twenty, almost near graduation Yun-Lee was studying for University entry exams but due to a car accident on the way she was emotionally scarred and bed ridden for two years. Making her transition from nineteen to twenty one years old and back into society; She is now considered an adult already. She feels lost and isn’t ready for adult hood due to her missing time lapse of her teenage years.
Her life changes until she meets a boy named Dongwhi; a young nineteen year old who is taking a gap year from high school to college, who doesn’t what to do in life yet. Everyday Yun-Lee sees Dongwhi caring for the same stray cats that she watches over and their encounters cause them to meet. Their similar interests and situations cause them to become new friends. Though was seems to be a beginning of a romance story but that’s not the main plot of the story. The main rising point of the story and center is about the stray cats they visit everyday. Though they may sound kind of a letdown but what matters is two people with similar problems working together to fix a problem. As you read through this situation you’ll find friendship and relationship slightly progressing and till the end you might get what your looking for. Don’t worry, be patient, the Romance will unfold later in the story. Surprisingly the central focus of Stray Cats as the problem perfectly metaphorically in a way and the two characters both finding their ways into adulthood a good match from the Author’s writing. I really enjoy Yun-lee as she’s kind and timid and Dongwhi as he is eccentric, optimistic and bit childish. The story is too drawn out in drama and it’s a pretty bright story.
The Art, as you notice in every page is a highly detailed and all in color. Everything is drawn so elegantly, smoothly and almost realistic. Characters look beautiful, sharp, alive and fashionable along with grand environments that is crisp, vivid and just glamorous. In some chapters the artist seems to experiment with multiple techniques such as ink blots, water coloring, painting, pastel and etc. All these techniques sometimes apply and match to the mood of the setting in the story making it fluid. If your reading a melancholic chapter the artist may use dark colors and a style that would match the feel, but the setting of the story is quiet, subtle and peaceful resulting in more bright, warm flourishing colors.
Overall it’s a simple story not to complicated with good characters in a beautiful detailed world. It’s grand novel that anyone can enjoy and isn’t too complicated in it’s pace. I find it very symbolic, touching, soothing and subtle for gentle heart readers. There aren’t many chapters and it’s all in one volume and worth a read. So if you have some time to spare, go ahead and check out Nineteen, Twenty-One!
Overall Score: 9/10