On the first day of her junior year, Kajitsu attends a Life Instruction class where she meets Akai, substitute calligraphy teacher and part-time councilor. Kajitsu finds Akai very attractive and as she opens up more and more to Akai, he warns her that she could get into trouble if she is too trusting. In the meantime, Natsu has been contacted by his aunt and uncle, the people who fostered him when Rumiko first disbanded the family. Natsu’s cousin had attempted suicide after being unable to compete with Natsu academically, feeling that his parents had transferred their love to Natsu. Natsu left his aunt and uncle s home, hoping it would give his cousin the space he needed to heal. Upon hearing that the cousin has recovered and wants Natsu to return, Natsu chooses instead to remain with his new family.  As readers gain insight into why Natsu is so anxious to please while at the same time trying not to be noticed, Kajitsu begins to see that holding herself apart has caused her world to shrink to where she can only see her step-brother. Determined to be in love with someone other than Natsu, she is thrilled when Akai agrees to take her out to dinner in return for helping him clean the calligraphy room. Aware of Kajitsu’s naivete, the reader is left anxious to find out just how far this possibly unscrupulous teacher will go. As this series turns from the family farce of volume 1 into something reminiscent of a traditional teen novel, the characters and situations become more recognizable and easy for older teens to identify with.

Crossroad, Volume 2
by Shioko Mizuki
ISBN: 0976895765
Go! Comics, 2006

  • Eva

    | She/her Supervising Children’s Librarian, Alameda Free Library

    Editor and Review Coordinator

    Eva Volin is Supervising Children’s Librarian for the Alameda (CA) Free Library. She cowrote “Good Comics for Kids: Collecting Graphic Novels for Young Readers” for Children & Libraries and is a contributor to the forthcoming ALSC Popular Picks for Young Readers. She has served as a judge for the Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards and the Isotope Award for Excellence in Mini-Comics. She has also served on several YALSA committees, including Great Graphic Novels for Teens and the Michael L. Printz Award. Eva is a regular contributor to School Library Journal’s Good Comics for Kids blog and is an occasional reviewer for Booklist.

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