Interest Stacks

Finished, Accessible Lesbian/Yuri Manga

Manga
byQueenDilettante
Mar 02 2023, 5:48 PM | Updated Oct 16, 2023 6:24 AM
A collection of some of the best lesbian/yuri/sapphic manga that are finished publishing and accessible to western readers. A lot of rec stacks that I've found include a lot of manga that either aren't done or aren't easily accessible. The genres featured range but all are very well worth it lesbian romances with an emphasis placed on queer authors.

I've read a few dozen sapphic manga and this stack includes every one that is finished publication that I have rated a 7/10 or higher.

Each entry is labeled with the tags best describing their genres, content warnings (when relevant), and a brief description of why they make the list. I find that most recommendation stacks lack content warnings and I figured I could hit as many birds with one stone as possible lol.

Spoilers will be kept as light as possible, but by listing Content Warnings, certain themes/plot points can be extrapolated. There will be no specifics, though!

The entries are organized by score that I gave - 10s, 9s, 8s, 7s. There is no specific order to which show up within those sections though!

I will update this stack as some favorites finish publishing and as I read/discover more! :)
Octave
Manga, 6 vol, 2008 Me:- Author:10
Tags: Drama, Adult Cast, Explicit, Seinen, Realistic/Grounded

CW: Infidelity, Sex Addiction, Closeted Sexuality, Gay Angst

Octave is a somewhat infamous manga for its content and how it handles it, but I genuinely think it's one of the best, most grounded portrayals of this kind of lopsided sapphic relationship. A lot of awful things happen in this manga and the characters aren't great people, but it feels so painfully authentic. If you're looking for a hard hitting sapphic drama, this is one of the best places to look.
Sabishisugite Lesbian Fuuzoku ni Ikimashita Report
Manga, 1 vol, 2016 Me:- Author:10
Tags: Drama, Autobiographical, Explicit, Realistic/Grounded

CW: Abuse, Addiction, Depression, Self Harm, Suicide, Incest, Sex Work

My Lesbian Experience With Loneliness is the best autobiography I've ever read. It's unrelentingly grounded and unwaveringly honest. The mangaka lays everything out on the table, including admissions that most would never dream of sharing in any capacity. It's brutal, it's honest, it's refreshing; read it.

Kakeochi Girl

Run Away with Me, Girl

Kakeochi Girl
Manga, 3 vol, 2018 Me:- Author:9
Tags: Drama, Adult Cast, Josei, Realistic/Grounded

CW: Abuse, Misogyny, Sympathetic Infidelity

Kakeochi Girl is one of the best adult cast lesbian romances I've ever come across. It's a somewhat-heavy drama that features a bit of meandering, but it never feels inauthentic or contrived. It's also quite dense, with a lot of story crammed into the only-three volume run. Highly recommended if you're looking for a good drama and/or an adult cast!
Yagate Kimi ni Naru
Manga, 8 vol, 2015 Me:- Author:9
Tags: Drama, Comedy, School, Coming of Age, Realistic/Grounded

CW: Gaslighting/Dishonesty, Single-Target Sexuality, Sexuality Denial

Bloom Into You is a decently-long school-age sapphic romance. It's a bit heavy in the melodrama, but it's always compelling enough to want to immediately keep reading. This is the best sapphic manga I've ever read that does not heavily feature a lot of really heavy, content warning inducing material. As a consequence, it's probably the best "light" drama in the stack!
Tatoe Todokanu Ito da toshitemo
Manga, 7 vol, 2016 Me:- Author:9
Tags: Drama, Age Gap, Pining, Realistic/Grounded

CW: Age Gap, Implied Incest, Gay Angst

Angst the manga. There's a lot of unrequited pining and melodrama throughout this manga, but it's handled incredibly maturely in spite of the controversial content. This is not only the only age gap romance I've clicked with, but it's easily one of the best written dramas I've ever read.
Still Sick
Manga, 3 vol, 2018 Me:- Author:9
Tags: Drama, Workplace, Adult Cast, Realistic/Grounded

CW: Abandonment, Manipulation, Homophobia, Discussions of Cheating

Still Sick is a refreshingly honest adult drama. The primary cast are all some of the most nuanced, round characters I've seen in any manga recently. There are so many plot threads that are weaved into the 23 chapters, but all of them pay off and feel rewarding. It can get heavy at times, but I cannot recommend Still Sick enough for anyone looking for a drama with an adult cast.
Kanojo no Idea
Manga, 3 vol, 2019 Me:- Author:9
Tags: Drama, Idols, School, Short

CW: Neglect, Manipulation

Her Idea / Your True Color is an incredible and short little romance between two girls from completely opposite worlds. It tackles the way people project their assumptions onto others and how important it is to see people for who they really are while telling a really beautiful little romance. Highly recommend :)
Dekisokonai no Himegimi-tachi
Manga, 6 vol, 2018 Me:- Author:9
Tags: Drama, School, Pining, Realistic/Grounded, Opposites Attract, Enemies to Lovers, Friends to Lovers

CW: Gay Angst, Parental Abuse (hinted), Furo/Bath Scenes, Fujoshi

Failed Princesses is one of the best school-set sapphic dramas I've ever read. The primary cast are believable and incredibly well written, plot points are set up early and resolved well, the drama never feels contrived, and the payoffs are all worth it. If you want a rewarding lesbian drama, you'd be hard pressed to find something better.
Watashi no Kobushi wo Uketomete!
Manga, 4 vol, 2018 Me:- Author:8
Tags: Comedy, Adult Cast, Tough Girl, Rivalry, Enemies to Lovers, Short

CW: Blood, Light Cartoony Violence

This is a really short, genuinely funny romance with an adult cast. It's so charmingly whacky and has such a silly premise, but it knows exactly what it is and is trying to be. It's an incredibly fun ride from start to finish and I highly recommend it.

Ikemen Girl to Hakoiri Musume

Handsome Girl and Sheltered Girl

Ikemen Girl to Hakoiri Musume
Manga, 2 vol, 2019 Me:- Author:8
Tags: Comedy, Adult Cast, Short, Feel Good, Butch/Femme, Shounen

CW: Mistaken Gender

Handsome Girl and Sheltered Girl is a cutesy, feel good manga that's not much more complicated than it sounds like it would be. If you're just looking for something that's an easy read, but still a complete, compelling story with an adult cast, this is a great place to look!
Hana to Hoshi
Manga, 2 vol, 2010 Me:- Author:8
Tags: Comedy, Drama, School, Sports, Enemies to Lovers, Short, Realistic/Grounded

CW: Inferiority Complex

Hana to Hoshi is a compelling drama with a great sense of humor. It's actually kind of surprising that the actual entry on MAL doesn't list Comedy anywhere, since it's great at getting a laugh from the reader.

With that said, this is a great, short dramedy with school and sports used as a backdrop to tell a very compelling enemies (rivals) to lovers story without anything explicit!

Hana to Hina wa Houkago

Hana & Hina After School

Hana to Hina wa Houkago
Manga, 3 vol, 2015 Me:- Author:8
Tags: Drama, Comedy, School, Short, Feel Good, Seinen, Realistic/Grounded

CW: None that I can think of!

Hana & Hina After School is one of the few manga that I've formally reviewed, and while that review expresses my thoughts the best, I'll summarize here. This manga is one of the most run-of-the-mill stories with a completely average plot that also knocks every single aspect out of the park. It does every average idea that it has immaculately. If you had to define the gold standard for "standard sapphic romance manga," this would be the quintessential pick.

Highly recommended to check this out if you want something great without the extra bells and whistles :)

Nikurashii hodo Aishiteru

I Love You So Much, I Hate You

Nikurashii hodo Aishiteru
Manga, 1 vol, 2019 Me:- Author:8
Tags: Drama, Adult Cast, Very Short, Realistic/Grounded

CW: Sympathetic Infidelity, Alcohol

Clocking in at an almost unbelievably short 9 chapters, I Love You So Much, I Hate You is a simple workplace drama. Expect the usual trappings of romance stories with an adult cast, but without nearly as much angst as a lot of the other entries in this stack. It kind of goes without saying that this is an easy one to knock out in a single sitting, but I still highly recommend it for what it is!

Ichido dake demo, Koukai Shitemasu.

I Can't Believe I Slept With You!

Ichido dake demo, Koukai Shitemasu.
Manga, 3 vol, 2019 Me:- Author:7
Tags: Comedy, Adult Cast, Short

CW: Age gap, Alcohol, Alcohol-Induced Sexuality (Horny Drunk), Suicide, Gay Angst, Questionable Consent

Despite the numerous Content Warnings listed above, I Can't Believe I Slept With You is actually a really cute, light hearted manga. The above content warnings and tropes aren't played to nearly the same dramatic degree that they are in other entries in this stack.

Assuming the mention of the above warnings don't put you off, I highly recommend checking out this great, short manga that you could knock out in a single sitting!

Kimi ni Tsumugu Bouhaku

Monologue Woven for You

Kimi ni Tsumugu Bouhaku
Manga, 3 vol, 2020 Me:- Author:7
Tags: Drama, Adult Cast, School, Club, Realistic/Grounded

CW: None that I can think of!

Monologue Woven for You is the first (and so far only) full-color illustrated manga in this stack. The art is stunning in full color and is a treat to look at across each volume. The story is a bit too melodramatic for my taste at times, but its heart shines through brighter than any issues I have with it.

Lonely Girl ni Sakaraenai

I Can't Say No to the Lonely Girl

Lonely Girl ni Sakaraenai
Manga, 6 vol, 2019 Me:- Author:7
Tags: Slice of Life, School, Opposites Attract, Realistic/Grounded, "Everyone is gay"

CW: Divorce (not primary cast), Parental Abuse (very briefly), Pining, Gay Angst

I Can't Say No to the Lonely Girl is a really cute manga that gets going right away. It throws no curve balls and remains a short, sweet, easy read throughout. It's really standard by sapphic manga standards but it does what it's trying to do well.
Omoi no Kakera
Manga, 3 vol, 2009 Me:- Author:7
Tags: Drama, School, Pining, Josei, Realistic/Grounded

CW: Grief, Rejection, Age Gap, Gay Angst

Omoi no Kakera is one of the most painfully grounded and realistic portrayals of the messiness that comes with being young and gay. There's so much heart in how authentic this story comes across as, and while it can often feel melodramatic, that melodrama never feels anything less than fully earned.

Kaketa Tsuki to Doughnut

Doughnuts Under a Crescent Moon

Kaketa Tsuki to Doughnut
Manga, 4 vol, 2019 Me:- Author:7
Tags: Drama, Adult Cast, Workplace, Opposites Attract, Realistic/Grounded, Chaste, Pining

CW: Grief, Neglect, Parental Death (mentioned), Gay Angst

Doughnuts Under a Crescent Moon is a really sweet twist on lesbian romances. It reads like an aroace love story, which is really unique for both manga and "romances" at large. It's a slow burn and not as satisfying as I'd like it to be, but it insists on doing things on its own terms and I really respect it for that.

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