I read this some years back but came across it accidentally again and wanted to add a little review for this lovely collection of short stories while my memory of it is still fresh. I won't be repeating the summaries (the above synopsis said it all just nicely) nor will I go into detail for each of the individual stories. Instead, I'm covering them as a whole because I think they have a lot in common - specifically the feeling they give off, their strengths, and why I find myself quite fond of them.
Honestly, the plot/stories themselves aren't exceptionally unique. But at the same time,
a "unique" plot is rather non-existent in shoujo manga nowadays - everything's pretty much been covered before. So what's left to make something stand out in a simplistic romance story falls on its execution and characters... and those areas, I think Ai no Tame ni did a wonderful job with.
For such short stories, Kawahara Kazune did really well with making her main characters come to life. What's more, she also managed to give some depth to the relationships between them. There's something quite endearing about the way she portrays her characters, their backgrounds, how they come to like each other, and how they eventually come together. And it didn't feel especially rushed. That, to me, is quite rare - even more so with short stories such as these.
I think what made me like the stories so much is the warm feeling they give throughout, from beginning to end. They're sweet without being cheesy, the events that happen aren't overly dramatic, and the characters are endearing in their own way. Nothing is over the top, and at the end of each story, it leaves you smiling.
The art, I felt, complemented the stories quite well. It's soft, just right, and doesn't "over-sparkle" like some shoujo manga can when trying to emphasize that lovey-lovey doki-doki feeling. Sometimes, just a look between the characters spoke very clearly without words - something I think is likely attributed to the drawing.
Overall, if you like to read short high school romance stories that leave you feeling content and warm without fussy drama, then give this one a go. The stories mostly cover the process of falling in love and getting that chance at a relationship (in 3 different ways and scenarios), so it doesn't cover the "beyond" - but it'll be perfect if you just want a quick yet satisfying read.