This plot takes a new twist to Romeo and Juliet's forbidden love. It's July 7th, 1999 in Shanghai and there are two gangs fighting for control. Only in the ceasefire zone do people live in peace. In a chance meeting Xiaoxue, who is part of the Toulon's gang, and Dawu, from the Xianglongji's gang meet by chance and without knowing they are enemies. In the heat of the moment Dawu takes him to a place he has the keys to in hopes Xiaoxue will join him, but is turned down. With a simple kiss he leaves Dawu not knowing they will meet again, but in very different circumstances
Don't be fooled by the horrendous art style, this manga is full of heart wrenching plot and romance. You'll get used to the style as you read on, and it won't bother you anymore once you get into the story (well, that's how it was for me). If you're looking for something sad and memorable, read it.
HOW I WAS INTRODUCED TO 1999NEN 7 NO TSUKI SHANGHAI:
This is somewhat important, to understand the rating and review I gave this manga. I stumbled upon this series after reading (the fantastic) After School Nightmare series by the same author, Setona Mizushiro.
The story, inspired somewhat by the star-crossed lovers of Shakespeare, is actually (and surprisingly) 1999nen 7 no Tsuki Shanghai's strong point. The story is transplanted into Shanghai in a world where kids must join gangs to survive. There was a lot of potential or the protagonists--members of opposing gangs--to have truly tense moments and torn loyalties. Instead the story
bogs itself down needlessly with trysts of minor characters, dully executed scenes, and embarrassingly flimsy motivations.
If you want to see fantastic art, go look at Mizushiro's "After School Nightmare". ASN was done at a later date, so it's understandable that she's matured as an artist since "1999nen 7 no Tsuki Shanghai"; however, the art within 1999 is passable at the best of times. As the series goes on--and more characters introduced--it's nearly impossible to tell each apart by looks alone. The layouts are dull and unflattering. Mizushiro is a great artist, but it simply doesn't show in this series.
This is another section that was somewhat lacking. The two protagonists, are arguably done well enough, even with flimsy motivations. When one looks at the supporting cast, however, one has to wonder how much time Mizushiro truly put into thinking each out. Developments with little or no foreshadowing are common in the later pages of the series, while the beginning is wasted on bland, nearly nameless sexual encounters. The tension that should build between gangs is barely felt in the face of trying to figure out who is sleeping with who and why.
As the score reflects, I was very disappointed in this series. I would earnestly recommend that anyone new to Setona Mizushiro avoid this series and instead try the higher quality "After School Nightmare Instead". Even for those who want to explore Mizushiro's other works, this title is simply not worth the time invested.
NOTE ABOUT THIS REVIEW: Also, if you find this review unhelpful in anyway, send me a private message saying why (please) so that I can improve it for future readers! :D
If you'll just look at first few pages, you might think twice on reading this manga but I can tell its a worth to read. This story really touched me so much I cried specially in the end. It's like Romeo and Juliet story in gangster style though I hated that the story is an open-ended one and you really gonna think in the end what a nice story should be afterwards. It has a unique love story not just like a plain yaoi story and that makes me think that this is one of the great yaoi mangas I've read.
I once read in a review that it is much more useful to write a negative review than a praising one. I agree with this one, however, I'm trying really hard to find words to describe this manga and I can not say anything else than it is absolutely beautiful. Is it the art? Not so much. The art made my eyes bleed sometimes and few times the characters' eyes made me think of those of a fish(empty, round, you get the point) but still, I can whole heartedly recommend this manga for everyone. At least if you like or have an open mind for
this kind of genre.
It starts with a boy meeting a boy. Attraction follows. However, problems arise as they soon find out they are enemies. The story does focus on the two main characters but the side characters are shown as individuals as well. They are not merely there to get the main characters together and help them overcome their obstacles, quite the opposite. The plot is thick, it took me a few chapters to make the difference which character was which and what was actually happening but once I got through that it was easy sailing. No pain, no gain that's what my mum always says (actually no, she says that be beware of those with AIDS. She's wise.)
And I would like to disagree strongly that there is no character building. In my eyes there was. It was not massive and you had to read between the lines but I think the flow of the story was just right. I would give this manga the highest score but unfortunately the art takes it down a notch. Luckily the mangaka's art style has improved hugely from that and if you have not read any other stories by the lovely Mizushiro Setona, I advice you to do so. Right now.