English: The secret butler; The Person That She Likes; Think Of You, Clavier; Would You Like To Adopt And Raise A Beauty?
Synonyms: The Secret Butler, Himitsu no Shitsujikun, Kimi no Suki na Hito, The Person That She Likes, Omou, Clavier, Think Of You, Clavier, Bijo wo Hirotte Sodatemasen ka?, Would You Like To Adopt And Raise A Beauty?
"If you don't want your 'secret' to be exposed, would you listen to my "wish"...?" Satsuki is both beautiful and smart, and she's popular in the whole academy, but actually, she has a "secret" that she can't tell anyone. One day, she witnessed her classmate, Okuno-kun, working part-time at a butler tea house. As a "bargaining point" to get Satsuki to keep quiet about this, he agreed to listen to her "wish", but then...?!
Also contains three other short stories:
• Kimi no Suki na Hito (The Person That She Likes)
• Omou, Clavier (Think Of You, Clavier)
• Bijo wo Hirotte Sodatemasen ka? (Would You Like To Adopt And Raise A Beauty?)
This series is composed of 4 different one-shots, so I'll try to evaluate a little bit of each one.
(chapter 1) 6/10
Classic tale of "don't judge a book by its cover". Something done before in plenty of manga and a subject that I personally feel doesn't run that well in a one-shot. However, the story did build up slowly and surely and was able to eventually reach the romantic peak towards the end.
(chapter 2) 5.75/10
A unique spin of the classic high school romance but not due to the story itself. It was head scratching to the point of near stupidity at times. The mangaka tried to
deviate a bit and attempted to build up a drama that felt forced and didn't match with the flow.
(chapter 3) 6.5/10
A student/sensei scenario. Usually just by saying this, one could figure out the basic premise of it all and this story was no different. The musical aspect of the story could make one feel as if it was a bit pretentious; it's pretty much interchangeable with other subject matters. The ending was of a fast forward on the pace but nothing too extreme.
(chapter 4) 5.5/10
A cop out. Using a rather non-traditional subject matter and attempting to make the readers feel connected and relatable didn't work for me at all. The story elements were all over the place and had no flow to it. It was also the shortest in terms of length compared to the other 3 chapters so that should say something.
The art work was decent I suppose. Designs such as the overly sharp chins and excessively sharp/defined hairstyles are things I don't particularly like but could work for most readers. While our characters weren't aesthetically pleasing, I will applaud the mangaka for drawing each and every main character differently enough in design to be distinguishable. Though facial designs were pretty consistent for the male and female leads.
The characters found in each one-shot chapter were pretty straight forward. Each of them also follow the same format in regards to introduction and development. We get a bit of a back story of each of them, meet the potential love interest, have the female lead (who usually serves as the narrator as well) initially reject the opposite sex, and through some event and plot here and there, gather their thoughts and come to terms with their true feelings. Supporting characters, if there were any, were pretty much nonexistent and contributed nothing to the story unless they were "forced" to by the plot.
Despite the rather high overall score of ~7.40, I didn't like these series of one-shots that much. I'm sure if I skim through my manga list or recall ones I've bookmarked somewhere I could get a hold of some better ones. The art was medicore, the stories were typical and oftentimes I found myself just power-reading through the stories. There are plenty of better romance stories out there for you shoujo fans, but if you got a quick ~30 minutes or so-- this collection of romance one-shots is feasible I suppose.