Top 10 Romance Manga of 2003


1. Lunar Legend Tsukihime

Action, Horror, Romance, Supernatural

Shiki Tohno sustained a life threatening injury as a child, and due to that incident he was sent away from the Tohno household and was given to a relative to be raised. Years later, when Shiki is in high school, the head of the Tohno household--his father--dies, and he is ordered to move back in by his sister Akiha, who is the new head of the household. However, Shiki holds a huge secret. Ever since that injury, he has been seeing lines on objects, and only with a special pair of glasses is he able to stop seeing them. Also he is unable to remember anything well from the time before his accident. The day he moves back to the Tohno household is the day he stumbles upon a woman named Arcueid Brunstud and decapitates her with one stab of his knife in a temporary fit of insanity. When she suddenly showed up beside him later alive and well, and ask him to be her bodyguard, Shiki's journey to unravel the mysteries of his past begins.

(Source: Anime News Network)


2. School Rumble

Comedy, Romance

Second-year student Tsukamoto Tenma learns that her secret crush, Karasuma Oji, will be transferring to a school in America. In a last-ditch effort to reveal her love to him, she writes a long (but anonymous) love letter. When Karasuma ends up postponing his transfer for another year, Tenma realizes she has to tell him how she feels before time runs out again. But her extreme nervousness around him prompts her to try and setup all sorts of schemes to get close to him and let him know, without actually coming out and saying it. Meanwhile, unknown to Tenma, the school delinquent, Harima Kenji, has the biggest crush on her, as well as the same anxieties about being direct. Around this love triangle of clueless people are a few of Tenma's friends, and her younger (but older looking, more mature, and more popular) sister, Yakumo. (Source: ANN)

This manga consists of 283 sharp chapters and 62 flat chapters.

Sharp and Flat refers to the musical notations.


3. High School Debut

Comedy, Drama, Romance, Slice of Life

After blindly following the advice of fashion magazines and the like, Haruna fails to win the eye of any guy. Convinced that a coach is needed (just like when she trained for softball), she recruits cute upperclassman Yoh Komiyama to instruct her on how to make herself more appealing. Yoh agrees, with one catch: Haruna had better not fall for him!

(Source: Viz)

The last two volume, Koukou Debut -Enrenhen-, contains oneshots and side-stories of the series.


4. Chibi Vampire

Comedy, Drama, Romance, Supernatural

Karin is a cute little girl who also happens to be a vampire...with a twist. Once a month, she experiences intense bleeding from her nose--we're talking gushers! In other words, she's a vamp with blood to spare, so rather than stealing blood from humans she actually gives her blood to them. If done right, this can be an extremely positive experience that benefits the "victim" as much as the vampire. The problem is that Karin never seems to do things right!

(Source: Tokyopop)


5. S.A: Special A

Comedy, Drama, Romance

Have you ever known someone who was better than you at everything you did? Hikari does. She's known Kei since they were both six years old and he's surpassed her at everything. Now they are the top two students in an extremely prestigious high school, with Kei holding firmly to that number one position, and Hikari is still determined to beat him, no matter what it takes.

(Source: MAL)

Volume 1 contains one-shot: Incomplete Chorus
Volume 8 contains Special Short - about what Kei was like as a child and when he and Hikari first met.
Volume 9 contains Special Short - about when Yuhiro meets Sakura.
Volume 11 contains one-shot: Food Paradise


6. Kimi to Boku.

Comedy, Drama, Romance, Slice of Life

The story revolves around four high school boys who have been friends since kindergarten. The series jumps around in time, showing their friendship from early childhood to their high school days.
This is a story about friendship, growing up, and...
(Source: M-U)


7. Full Metal Panic

Action, Comedy, Mecha, Romance

A sergeant by the name of Sousuke Sagara is assigned an important task. That of guarding high school girl Chidori Kaname. Sousuke is a military genius, gaining high rank at an early age, but because of his strange upbringing, he lacks social skill. Now, he finds himself as a fish out of water as he attempts to protect a girl from an evil organization and turn in his school work on time.

(Source: ANN)


8. Sand Chronicles

Romance, Comedy, Drama, Slice of Life

After her parents get divorced, Ann Uekusa and her mother move from Tokyo to rural Shimane. Accustomed to the anonymity of city living, Ann can't get used to the almost overbearing kindness of the people in her mother's hometown. But when personal tragedy strikes, Ann discovers how much she needs that kindness.

(Source: Viz)

Note: Won the 50th Shogakukan Manga Award for shoujo manga in 2005 and was adapted into a movie in 2008.

Included bonus episodes: Canary, ~Thirty Years Ago~ Summer Vacation, The Present, Time Capsule Part One, Time Capsule Part Two, Sand Chronicles: Bonus Story: Summer, Age 19.


9. Nosatsu Junkie

Comedy, Romance

Naka is an aspiring young model with a problem: her face tenses up into a terrifying spectacle whenever she gets nervous on photo shoots! Naka's rival is Umi, the hottest model at their agency. But Naka soon discovers Umi's secret--and hilarity ensues behind the cameras!

(Source: Tokyopop)

Included chapters: 28.5, 33.5


10. Fushigi Yugi: Genbu Kaiden

Adventure, Drama, Fantasy, Romance

Takiko Okuda is a strong-willed girl living in the Taisho Era. She needs to be strong -- Oosugi, the one man she's ever loved, is a married man; her mother is terminally ill; and her father, Einosuke, has not been home in over a year. When at last Einosuke returns, it's with a notebook full of Chinese scribblings that seem more important to him than the death of his wife. Furious, Takiko steals away his completed translation -- "The Universe of the Four Gods" -- with the intention of tearing it to shreds, but the instant she opens it, she's surrounded by light... And it is said that this is how the legend of the Priestess of Genbu began.

(Source: ShoujoMagic)

Included one-shot:
Volume 6: Ayashi no Ceres Gaiden

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