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Sweet Rein – Sakura Tsukuba: Series Review

Sweet Rein, renamed here in North America from Yoroshiku Master, is the third series by Sakura Tsukuba that we’ve received. It originally ran in LaLa DX in 2005, and has been licensed by Viz media under their Shojo Beat imprint. It is a short 3 volume series. Volume 1 was released November 2013, volume 2 in March 2014, and volume 3 in July 2014.



The Gist: Kurumi thought she’d be spending Christmas alone, as usual–that is, until she met Kaito. The moment they touch, the two of them are linked together by the invisible reins of a Santa-Reindeer relationship. Kurumi is ‘Santa,’ and because Kaito is the ‘reindeer,’ Kaito must do everything she tells him to and his body reacts accordingly. However, as time progresses, there seems to be something more than just a master-servant relationship…

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Volume 1 Cover





The Review: Sweet Rein is very episodic in nature due to the way it was originally published. Because of this, it makes it easy to pick up and read along at any point. Tsukuba takes the master-servant trope of manga, and puts a festive spin on it. The idea of Kurumi being a Santa and Kaito her dedicated reindeer is a different take on the santa mythos and it makes for an very cute and endearing story. The setting isn’t always during Christmas, either. There are summer scenes at the beach, a Halloween party, and spring cherry blossom viewing parties. In fact, my favorite story arc is during spring, when it’s reindeer mating season and all the girls are fawning over Kaito. It’s very adorable the way Kurumi reacts. There are other santa-reindeer relationships that are explored by side characters in the story, and that makes suspension of disbelief easier on the readers as well. It’s not just Kurumi and Kaito that have this special bond, and watching other santa-reindeer bonds play out makes it a more interesting story. I can’t recommend this series enough if you want some lighthearted reading. Once again Sakura Tsukuba enchants readers with her vivid imagination and lovable characters.

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Art and paneling from Volume 1





The Art: Sweet Rein doesn’t disappoint when it comes to the art, either. Festive costumes and attractive characters make for an enjoyable read. The panels flow well from page to page and the toning isn’t overdone. It’s just the right imagery for this lighthearted series. Colored pieces are enjoyable to view as well.



The Audience: Sweet Rein is perfect for a teen/tween audience, and it would be well received by older audiences as well. The master-servant relationship isn’t overplayed or mysogynistic in nature. It’s actually the girl in charge and she never abuses her control over the boy. Their little romance is very innocent.



The Media: There are 3 extra one shots included in the series. Volume 1 includes Sweet Bite Mark, volume 2 The Door to Eden, and volume 3 The Break of Dawn. All three volumes of Sweet Rein are available from Viz Media’s Shojo Beat imprint now. It would make a cute Christmas present for this year!

Heart of Manga Rating: ♥♥♥♥

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Laura

Author/Editor
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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2 Comments

  • Miss Sakura Tsukuba are you going to make “Sweet Rein” vol. 4 ? I love this book and I like to know what happens next.

    • There’s no volume 4. 🙁 That’s the end of their little story. Tsukuba has many more series that you might enjoy, however. Try Land of the Blindfolded or Penguin Revolution.

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