My Little Monster vol.1 – Robico

My Little Monster, taken from Tonari no Kaibatsu-kun, is a series by Robico that ran in Monthly Dessert magazine  from 2008 to 2013. It is being brought to North America by Kodansha USA. Volume 1 was released in March and volume 2 in May 2014.

The Gist: Shizuku only cares about her grades and nothing else. She has no friends and the only thing that matters to her is being top of the class. Her teacher requests that she take some printouts to a student that’s been expelled for rough behavior. She obliges in exchange for study materials. Said student Haru Yoshida is paranoid about school, and after determining that Shizuku is not a spy, he declares himself her friend. Shizuku’s presence is enough to get Haru to come back to school. There he follows her around like a puppy. Shizuku is dumbfounded by his behavior and more than annoyed by his interruption of her study regimen and his weird aggressive behavior. It’s even more perplexing when Haru declares he likes Shizuku and hugs her. Mixed signals fly between Haru and Shizuku and readers are left wondering… do they really like each other? are their feelings mutual?

Volume 1 Cover

Volume 1 Cover

The Review: To be fair, I was really dreading this series just from the synopsis. Another socially inept girl. Another delinquent boy. How many tropes can this series cover all at one time? What got me through the first couple of chapters was merely curiosity. But as the volume continued, I wanted to read more because of how the characters interacted. Haru says he likes Shizuku, hugs her, kisses her, and then makes her feel like she’s just a friend. Shizuku tries hard to ignore Haru, ignore her crushing, and then realizes it’s impossible to do. When she confesses accidentally, he asks if she wants to go out and she says, “just joking”. Wait, Wha??? I’m flipping pages faster trying to figure out if these two bakas are really going to deny everything. So, yeah. The series actually caught my attention after a while. Maybe enough that I’ll have to pick up the next couple of volumes.

Again, I think these high school romance manga would be better if there were fewer tropes or stereotypes used for the characters. Shizuku is not alone in her social ineptness in the world of shoujo manga. She’s got a lot of copycat sisters. Haru’s quixotic behavior makes him a little more unique. Still, he’s another delinquent that scares all his peers. Oh, and he also happens to be the smartest student in the school. Ta-da! Yeah, I’ve seen that one before, too.


August Dessert 2013

The Art: I’m not too keen on Robico’s style. A lot of the color pieces I’ve seen look kind of drab – which I’m sure is intentional based on choice of color palette. It’s a washed-out watercolor look in a lot of earthy tones. The more colorful pieces like the magazine spread above, or even the blue color palette used on the front cover of Dessert pictured here are a big improvement. The black and white line art looks fine with panels and toning giving it a clean look. One thing missing is two page spreads. I like it when the mangaka emphasize the important moments with those larger spreads, but Robico doesn’t seem to use that technique at all. It’s disappointing.

The Audience: This series is perfect for the teens and tweens audience it targets. If you like Missions of Love or Oresama Teacher then this fits well with those less intense more comedic high school shoujo manga.

The Media: Tonari no Kaibatsu-kun (My Little Monster) has 13 complete volumes in Japan. A 13 episode anime by the same name was also produced by Brain’s Base and can be viewed subtitled on Crunchyroll. My Little Monster has 2 available volumes in North America with volume 3 releasing in August 2014.

Heart of Manga Rating: ♥♥♥


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Super mom and teacher until the kids go to bed, then romance manga addict and writer until the caffeine wears out! Specializes in the shoujo and josei genre of manga and anime.
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  • Please Contact Robico And Tell Her/Him To Please Consider Making More My Little Monster Episodes Pleaseeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee The Show Was So Good and I Would Love Some More Episodes Please

    • Not gonna happen. Get used to shoujo manga never having a complete anime.

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