Book Review: Ten Count, Vol 6 by Rihito Takarai

Ten Count, Vol 6                     

Author: Rihito Takarai

Publisher: SuBLime Manga

American release date: December 11, 2018

Format/Genre/Length: Paperback/manga/GLBT/186 pages

Overall Personal Rating: ★★★★★

Reviewer: Julie Lynn Hayes

 

While out with Kurose, Shirotani has a chance encounter with Ueda, the woman who is responsible for his germophobia. As Kurose returns the keys she dropped, she tells the two men she’d like to buy them a drink, as a thank you. Shirotani is reluctant, but he is also reluctant to explain anything to Kurose, who can tell he’s uneasy. They compromise by saying they can go, but just until it’s time to leave for their lunch reservation. Something Ueda says strikes a nerve, and Shirotani excuses himself. Once he’s gone, Ueda makes a blatantly obvious attempt at seducing Kurose, but he has a few choice words for her.

Kurose and Shirotani miss their reservation, but they do share their first kiss. Afterward, Kurose says he’s just as happy with food from a mini-mart, so that’s what they do. They find a place to eat outside, and have a long talk about their relationship. Shirotani admits to his feelings for Kurose, and that his reluctance to fill in the tenth number on his list was in order to keep seeing Kurose forever. Then they both shed tears of happiness.

Kurose is browsing in a book store and notices a table set up for an author signing. A startled Kurose recognized the author, and enters into conversation with him, but doesn’t reveal himself until the end. By the time the author realizes it, Kurose has gone, having found closure on a part of his life he’d never found before.

Shirotani has changed. Not only does he stop wearing his gloves, to the amazement of his boss and his co-worker, he openly seeks out Kurose at the clinic, only to learn he traded his shift for that day. Kurose’s co-worker mentions that Kurose will be missed, since he is leaving psychotherapy, to Shirotani’s great surprise. A fearful Shirotani rushes to Kurose’s apartment. When they make love, Shirotani wants to show his love for Kurose by doing something for him he’s never been able to do before.

This is the last volume of the series, sadly. I have come to love these two guys, and watching them on their journey has been amazing. However, I’m happy with where they are, working on a new list, and even though I don’t think they’ve told each other everything just yet, I think they will. So they’re in a good place, and they have each other.

I think the writing is very good, the author tells her story very well, and these characters come to life on every page. I would definitely watch an anime, if they ever make one. It would definitely need to be explicit, though. This is not a story for minors. I found it realistic, in that her characters are very human and very imperfect. But they are perfect for one another, and that’s what counts. With love, all things are possible.

I highly recommend this series if you want a yaoi romance that goes beyond the sexual (but includes that as well).

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