Image of an anime girl leaned back in a chair, casually flipping through a book.

Those of you who follow me on Twitter may have noticed that I walked away from my research career and all the responsibilities that come along with marital bliss (relax, it was temporary), to visit my family for a week. It involved ten hours of driving, unlimited cups of coffee, and a lot of solo karaoke.

While this Southern Belle was glad to escape the conservative, at times even regressive, area I grew up in, there are a few places I miss about ‘home.’ One of these places is a local used bookstore; where I like to believe many of my childhood memories are still nestled somewhere inside the walls.

Over the years, the store has grown, adding a second level and expanding many of types of genre and media they carry — including adding a Manga and Anime section

Having only recently begun reading and collecting manga, I’m always looking to expand my library.  While scanning the titles, I came across this…

Image of front of

Completely inspired by the cover art (mmm…), I read the synopsis printed on back…

“Corporate secretary Shirotani suffers from obsessive-compulsive disorder. One day he meets Kurose, a therapist who offers to take him through a ten-step program to cure him of his compulsion. As the two go through each of the ten steps, Shirotani’s attraction to his counselor grows.”

Give that Kurose a surname, I just assumed the therapist in this story was female. My first reaction? “Kurose sounds awful similar to Kimmie. Mmm…”

So, based on a purely selfless motive, to support a local bookstore of course, into the basket it went.

Next, I stumbled upon this….

Image of cover of manga Ng Life by Mizuho Kusanagi. It shows a guy resting his forehead against a girls.

Based on the cover art, how could this be mistaken at all as a (potential) yaoi story? The synopsis for Ng Life read….

Keidai relives the final days of Pompeii after being hit on the head, taking a blow for Yuuma. The dark events in the past continue to haunt him, but the truth is revealed about the choices Sirix made on that fateful day, and just how things ended beneath the column of volcanic ash. Will Keidai ever be able to forgive himself for the events of the past, so that he can move forward and accept his feelings for Mii?

I also mistakenly picked up volume 9, rather than the first volume.  To be fair, the price sticker was covering the number on my copy so…. yeah.

Later that evening, I realized my mistake and asked my husband to order volume 1 for me via Amazon. He responded by posing this little scenario to me… “I don’t know what I would do if I woke up one day and you were a guy.” Okay… weird topic, but we’ve pondered stranger things. After an entertaining discussion as to what I would do as a man, WeekendOtaku finally explained to me what the narrative was about.  Below is the synopsis printed on the first volume of Ng Life.

A high school boy is the reincarnation of a citizen of Pompei, and his friends around him are all also reincarnated (although they don’t remember it the way he does). However, his wife from the past is now a middle school boy, and his best friend from the past is now a cute girl.

So yes, this has the potential to turn into a BL manga series. With that said, it is equally possible that Keidai will end up with his female friend, Mii, who was once his male best friend. Who knows? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

After my long drive back from vacation, I cuddled up in bed with my husband, cat, and 10 Count Manga.

When I first saw the main character (sans medical mask), Shirotani, I thought he was drawn a bit feminine.

Image of young man, Shirotani, with wispy hair in his face and a delicate nose and chin.

After priding myself on being so open to falling for a feminine guy, I pressed on.  Then, I was introduced to this guy…

Image of handsome dark haired young man

Nice bone structure and likely smuggling a six pack beneath his stylish layers, I quickly opted to invest in this handsome stranger instead.

So you probably already guessed by now that this is Kurose, the therapist offering to ‘cure’ Shirotani. Didn’t see that coming.

Gif of anime boy reading and getting more shocked with each page he turns.

Being that same sex love interests are perfectly okay with me, I will continue reading ’10 Count.’ And, if ‘Ng Life’ is decent, I will likely binge read that as well.

This humorous oversight on my part does serve a purpose, in that it speaks volumes (pun intended) about human conditioning. When I didn’t recognize Kurose to be a boy’s name, I just assumed ’10 Count’ was a story involving two heterosexual characters. Was it wrong of me to jump to that conclusion? Absolutely. Does it have anything to do with my own heterosexual tendencies? Probably.

Although I would have opted to buy the manga all the same, I have a feeling that some avid manga readers might have bypassed them based solely on the yaoi relationships involved. Narrowing interests to only include certain genre or romantic pairings will exclude you from some truly intriguing plots.

So while I expect you read this to find humor in my mix-up, I hope this inspires you to open yourself up, step outside your comfort zone, and discover all the new, fascinating experiences that await you.

Image of Kimmie kawaii
Happy Reading! –