I received a digital advanced reviewer copy of Snow Fairy by Tomo Serizawa from Tokyopop.
When a wild life photographer gets his car stuck in a snow bank, he is too busy marveling at nature to notice the gravity of his situation. Luckily for him, a local resident of the town happens to cross his path and offers him some help. What they both don’t realize at the time is that this chance encounter will change both their lives.
Aside from telling this beautiful story, the artwork is stunning from page to page. It is clear that Serizawa loves these characters and is in tune with their development throughout the story. The focus on their faces, body language, and minor details make this manga stand out from your typical BL.
About Snow Fairy
In the snowy town of Hokkaido lives Haruki Homura, a 21-year-old country boy who works around the town. An orphan, he lives next door to his grandmother in his parent’s house, and hasn’t really made any moves. Enter Akihito Narumi, the stranger he finds stuck in the snow bank.
Narumi is a traveling wildlife photographer who is in Hokkaido looking to capture “snow fairies.” In your typical this only happens in manga fashion, Haruki ends up inviting Narumi to stay with him throughout the duration of his trip. Immediately, it is clear that these two are drawn to each other.
After their first awkward night together, which was PG but definitely has another typical trope: you grabbed me while you were sleeping and I can’t get up, the two embark on a wonderful journey of getting to know each other. As they are in two drastically different places in their lives, they both broaden each other’s horizons.
What Makes It Special
As I mentioned earlier, the chemistry in Snow Fairy can be FELT through the breathtaking artwork. Subtle glances are made clear, moments of awkward but cute tension all seem to effortlessly jump off the page and into your heart. It is easy to fall in love right along with Haruki and Narumi. Given that a main point of the story is photography, Serizawa uses this to its full potential. You can tell the photography aspect is carefully woven in, giving the manga an entirely different look and feel than what we are used to.
The story itself isn’t uncommon: big city person meets small town person, love ensues. However, it is the care that is put into making the characters multifaceted and dimensional that makes Snow Fairy unique. They both have a lot to learn from each other and explore that within the chapters of the story.
I appreciated that Narumi does not take the “let me save you” approach, even though he almost has a chance to. Haruki also does not “need saving” and makes that very clear to Narumi. They both are able to enter each other’s worlds and find away to make it work together. Snow Fairy is a heartwarming story from start to finish that I won’t stop thinking about any time soon.
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