If there's one manga that should be considered as "the most realistic manga ever made" then Mustard Chocolate deserves the title.
When it comes to a romance story, people often use "realistic" to refer to the story where the main character doesn't end up with his first love or to a depressing romantic story in general. Some also refer it to a complex romantic love story. But often, a depressing story in manga is too depressing to be realistic and a complex relationship in manga is too complex to be realistic that it makes some viewer cringy. Exaggeration is a thing in most manga but I
don't mean it as a negative thing. On the contrary, it makes the story more interesting to follow but sometimes it makes the story looks stupid when its too much.
Mustard Chocolate avoids to take in any exaggeration. It's a pretty simple story about a young loner girl named Rinko in the cram school as a preparation for her to attend an arts college. Along the way, she finds few friends and experiences a new experience for her called love. But as realistic as it can be, it's not usually easy for her.
Mustard Chocolate is a realistic portrayal of a quite young girl's growing up phase. And when I said realistic, I really mean it. Imagine one of your quite girl classmates who sits in the corner of the classroom and never starts a conversation with others except few friends of her suddenly tells you her love story when you coincidentally meet her in college. That's how realistic Mustard Chocolate is. Rinko experienced joy and also sadness, but none of them exaggerated.
I don't say the absence of exaggeration in Mustard Chocolate is something positive though. It made the character easy to understand but at the same time makes the story less interesting to follow.
For the quite young girls in high school though, or those who used to be, may find this manga relatable and interesting.