Top 10 Romance Manga of 2002
1. Ouran High School Host Club
One day, Haruhi, a scholarship student at exclusive Ouran High School, breaks an $80,000 vase that belongs to the "Host Club," a mysterious campus group consisting of six super-rich (and gorgeous) guys. To pay back the damages, she is forced to work for the club, and it's there that she discovers just how wealthy the boys are and how different they are from everybody else.
2. Skip Beat!
Kyoko Mogami followed her true love Sho to Tokyo to support him while he made it big as an idol. But he's casting her out now that he's famous! Kyoko won't suffer in silence--she's going to get her sweet revenge by beating Sho in show biz!
3. Wandering Son
Shuuichi Nitori is a 5th grade student who likes to bake and has always been something of a feminine boy. When he transfers to a new school, Shuuichi is mistaken for his 6th grade sister on his first day. Then he ends up sitting next to Yoshino Takatsuki, a tall, boyish girl who everyone calls "Takatsuki-kun." They both have secrets they can't let anyone know...
The series deals with issues such as transgenderism, gender identity, and the beginning of puberty.
In Victorian-era England, a young girl is rescued from a life of destitution and raised to become a proper British maid. Emma meets William, the eldest son of a wealthy family, and immediately falls in love with him. William shares her feelings, but the strict rules of their society prevent their relationship from ever coming out in the open. Traditional class distinctions and rich, historical details provide the backdrop for this appealing romance.
5. We Were There
The start of high school life. To the girls, that also meant the start of their love lives. For brand new first year student, Takahashi Nanami (Nana for short), it was no different... She happens to end up in the same class as the incredibly popular Yano Motoharu, who rumors say that two thirds of all the girls are guaranteed to fall in love with. But will that hold true for Nana, who says that if she had to choose between like or dislike, she'd say she dislikes him!?
Note: Won the Shogakukan Manga Award for shoujo in 2005.
6. Hotarubi no Mori e
A collection of four one shots, one for each season.
1) Hanauta Nagaruru (Overhearing a Flower Song)
At Shima's school, there is an old, abandoned building, and for the past few days, she has been hearing guitar music coming from within. The source of the song is a student learning the guitar from Fujimura, a boy who constantly gets into fights but is kind at heart. Shima is entranced by the melody and soon begins taking lessons from Fujimura as well.
2) Hotarubi no Mori e (Into the Forest of Fireflies' Light)
When she was six years old, Hotaru Takegawa got lost in the woods. A strange masked man named Gin led her out of the forest, but he told her that if a human ever touched him, he would disappear. She vowed to visit Gin the next day and ended up spending the rest of her summer with him. Every summer since then, Hotaru has come to visit him, and while she ages, he stays the same. But as she grows, so do her feelings.
3) Kurukuru Ochiba (The Fallling of Autumn Leaves)
Tsubaki Kemumaki has been friends with Kaede Kirisato for the past 11 years. Kaede's wealthy parents were usually away, so he was often lonely, but Tsubaki kept him company during those times. Kaede was also nearly kidnapped as a child, and since then, Tsubaki has vowed to protect him. But soon, she realizes that her feelings for him are more than just a desire to protect her childhood friend.
4) Hibi, Fukaku (Deepening the Scar)
When they were children, Ritsu Jinnai and her brother Sou were inseparable. But due to their parents' constant fighting, Sou moved away with their father. Eight years later, they are reunited, and the siblings are overjoyed, but they don't feel the same connection they did before. And what's more, Ritsu begins to feels an ache in her heart when she looks at Sou...
7. Air Gear
Ikki Minami is a junior high school student with a dream—to become the best Air Trek rider in town. It won’t be easy, as he faces a lot of competition from boys and girls alike. What is Air Trek? Just the latest craze that involves taking a two-wheel inline skate and adding a motor, suspension, and a shock absorber to enable the wearer to execute the wildest, wackiest, most aggressive moves you can imagine. Ikki has a lot to learn as he fights his way to the top in this wild, sexy manga from the creator of Tenjho Tenge!
(Source: Kodansha Comics)
8. I Love You
Kippei Katakura is a 17-year-old playboy who spends his time chasing girls, careless of their feelings. But when his 5-year-old cousin Yuzuyu comes to live with his family after her mother's sudden disappearance, Kippei is put in charge of taking care of her. As Kippei gets to know Yuzuyu and starts to understand how she feels, he also begins to realize that all girls were like Yuzuyu once... (Source: Viz)
9. Strawberry 100%
Junpei Manaka sneaks up to the roof to see the sunset. When he opens the door, he startles a mysterious beauty. She panics and runs away, but before not Junpei has caught sight of her adorable strawberry print panties... in EXTREME close-up. With that vision forever burned into his memory, Junpei embarks on a quest to find the girl, and the panties, of his dreams!
Jin is a strange kid with an angel mark on his hand. He lives a poor but peaceful life with his grandfather, along with the other destitute and abandoned vagabonds near the river. One day, his peaceful life changes when a strange monster named "player" appears, chopping off heads and killing everyone who appears in front of it.