Title: Arrested Love
Mangaka: Seiju Natsumegu
Licenser: Irodori Aqua
*Disclaimer: I was asked by Irodori Aqua to review this title and given a review copy. I have not been compensated in any way for this review.
What a title to break my review hiatus!
I have had my eye on Arrested Love since it’s release but as most of you know I am studying for my qualifying exams for my PhD. *insert panicked screaming*
So, I took it as a sign that I was meant to read this title when Irodori Aqua approached me; and PHEW was I right (as I often am but I digress).
The first few panels drew me in immediately and before I knew it, I was on the last page, trying to swipe to the next page for more, only to no avail.
Arigaya and Todoroki’s story captured my attention because in the first few panels because we see there’s an age gap! And if there’s one trope that I like regardless of genre, it’s a healthy age gap!
Arigaya as a high school student, is on her way to school, lamenting her cold features and how they make her appear as a delinquent and unfriendly. She thinks little of the scary looking yakuza and his henchman on the side of the
street… that is until he approaches her like he would your average girl!
And the most pure, silly, and endearing love I’ve read in a while is born! The next chapter is a fast forward to Arigaya as a proper adult who’s now a detective working in division 4 that specializes in capturing yakuza men like Todoroki. The two love birds meet again (though they don’t know it’s mutual love) and the adorable, though “hard boiled,” Todoroki says something that maybe he shouldn’t have in the middle of being apprehended.
Arigaya’s so flustered by Todoroki’s words, that he’s able to escape, and so their game of cat and mouse begins in earnest! Every time these two run into each other, Todoroki manages to blurt out what’s on his heart. Due to Arigaya’s cold disposition though, he always assumes he’s made her angry in some way and to maintain his cover, he laughs off his confessions before making hasty get aways.
While I normally find this kind of dynamic frustrating, I couldn’t help but giggle every time these two interacted! Their hearts, so clearly on their sleeves, remained shielded from the each other’s eyes. *Chef’s kiss*
One night, Arigaya shows up undercover to what turns out to be Todoroki’s new operation to apprehend someone that isn’t Todoroki. She enlists the help of the man she’s in love with, and he agrees without hesitation because 1) “that’s his woman” (yes, Todoroki calls her that, out loud!) and 2) seeing Arigaya all dolled up makes him fall in love with her all over again! *cue squeals* (Seriously my heart threatened to burst from all the UWU😭)
Arigaya’s target is another man however, and Todoroki can’t stop butting in while Arigaya works. She finally pulls him aside and her anger and frustration at his interference in her work manages to persuade Todoroki to reign it in and
only watch from afar. Which he does reluctantly, even as Arigaya willingly leaves on the arm of this new suave character (or does she…?).
So final verdict?
Read ASAP! If you’re a fan of yakuza and mutual love this title is for you! It also seems like there might be some slow burn due to the “misunderstandings” between our two leads. Sensei does such a wonderful job balancing the plot, humor, and UWU moments that I already know I’ll be re-reading this series often🤗
My only complaint (outside of it being too short) is that Todoroki’s feelings though expressed throughout the story after their initial meeting, aren’t clear at the very beginning. In other words, when he approaches high school student Arigaya, it’s not clear if it’s because he’s already smitten with her or because he was trying to sell her Halloween candy. But, I imagine that will be cleared up in later parts(🤞🏾)
I’m also including part of Sensei’s author’s note because on a more personal note, as a creator of BL content myself now, my process is pretty much exactly as described—characters just pop up! I am so thankful Sensei shared her work with us, so please make sure to support by buying your own copy and following Sensei on Twitter(hyperlinked above)!
I can’t wait to read more and see where these lovebirds take us—hopefully they can get on the same page!