Saturday, March 1, 2008

Free Manga Online: Nodame Cantabile

The following overview was swiped from The Comics Journal:

Nodame Cantabile is an understated soap opera following a small circle of music students in a prestigious arts college, and two in particular: Chiaki, a haughty, tightly contained music prodigy looking to make his way in the music world as a conductor, and Noda, a spacy and disorganized ditz whose sole apparent redeeming feature is her genius for jazzy improvisation on the piano. Naturally, they are constantly thrust into one another's lives, typical opposites destined for romance. While a more traditional soap opera might throw a variety of obstacles in their paths and make the pair fall in love as they overcome them, Nodame Cantabile takes a slightly different tack: Its two ostensible romantic leads are so wrapped up in their own little worlds that they themselves become the obstacles. It's a wonderful display of delayed expectations, as situation after situation that a lesser writer might have played for sentiment instead becomes another lost chance, advancing the story but not necessarily the leads' would-be relationship. Have you ever seen two opposites clash so often and so fundamentally that you just want to slap each of them upside the head and tell them to get a room and be done with it? Creator Tomoko Ninomiya takes a perverse delight in leaving the reader wanting to do the same thing.

To start reading, click here.