Manga Highlight: Aku no Hana

Artist: Shuuzou Oshimi

Chapters: 58

Status: Completed

Genre: Drama, Romance, School, Shounen, Psychological

 

Summary

Kasuga Takao loves reading books, specifically Baudelaire’s Les Fleurs du Mal. His muse and Venus, Saeki Nanako, is someone he admires from a distance. He forgets his copy of Les Fleurs du Mal in the classroom one day after school and runs back alone to pick it up. In the classroom, he finds not only his book, but Saeki’s gym uniform as well. On a mad, lustful impulse, he takes it.

The next day, his classmates are heard talking about the pervert who stole Saeki’s uniform and Kasuga is taken over with unspeakable shame and guilt. Sawa Nakamura, who is known as the loner, having saw the events that took place takes advantage of it and begins to mess with Kasuga and meddle with his love life.

Our thoughts on Aku no Hana

1. I find it beautiful how it showcases the dips and rises of growing up and healing from past traumas through the main character.

2. It’s an amazing coming-of-age manga that puts emphasis on teenage perversion without the intentions of using it as fanservice but to portray it as an issue.

3. The characters are carefully planned out; each take their own twists and turns and develop incredibly realistically as teenagers grow into young adults.

4. It takes a little bit of time to become immersed in the manga and many drop it early on because of the confusing events and slow pacing of the plot.

5. I personally love how it realistically portrays what could happen in a teenager’s life if they were just as unstable as the characters in the manga and if they were to face the obstacles that these characters did.

 

Trivia about Aku no Hana

1. Aku no Hana was serialized in Kodansha’s Bessatsu Shōnen Magazine between September 9, 2009, and May 9, 2014.

2. This manga received a nomination at the fifth Manga Taishou.

3. The anime adaptation was animated using rotoscoping techniques!

4. It was published in English as The Flowers of Evil by Vertical Inc. from May 8, 2012 to October 14, 2014.

The rotoscope animation has gotten mixed reviews but personally, I think it’s very fitting for the anime even if it does look derpy at times.

 

Verdict: Read it!

I cannot begin to describe the trip I went on reading this manga. It was utterly infuriating but also charming; I went from feeling disgusted to being incredibly emotional. It’s very slow paced for the first half of the manga but the pay off is worth it when it finally takes off.. From beginning to end, I can confidently say that I loved this manga and I would highly recommend it to any lover of mangas that really make you think.

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