I feel like good disability fiction is on the rise lately with the likes of A Silent Voice becoming so popular and now I Hear the Sunspot is being talked about as both a great story about someone with a disability but also a great boys love manga. Ive seen it mentioned so many times around the web and pop up on a lot of peoples must read mangas of 2018 and I have to say this manga definitely deserves all the praise that has been heaped upon it. Yuki Fumino really delves deep into what it means be a person with a hearing disability that not bad enough to be considered part of the deaf community but also not insignificant enough to be considered a normal person. The boys love aspects appear as more of an afterthought as the characters traverse societal rules around conformity and the almost infantilization of people with disabilities. The publisher One Peace Books describes I Hear the Sunspots story as: Because of a hearing disability Kohei is often misunderstood by others and has trouble integrating into life on campus so he learns to keep his distance. That is until he meets the outspoken and cheerful Taichi. He tells Kohei that his hearing loss is not his fault. Taichis words cut through Koheis usual defense mechanisms like a knife and opens his heart. More than friends less than lovers their relationship changes Kohei forever. I want to preface this review by saying that his is book one of the original two part series but the volume itself does not mention what book it is. I had a lot of trouble figuring out what book to buy first since there is this one book two and then volume one of the multipart series as well. So if you are looking to buy the series start with the book with the green cover then book two then volume one of the series. Ill be reviewing each one in order so feel free to follow along with me as well. Besides that confusing bit about the volumes I find a lot of strength in almost all areas of this series. The art could be a little stronger but I honestly dont mind it. The sketchiness of the lines and character designs lends to this overexposed light atmosphere within the pages that creates this feeling of two friends hanging out during a warm summer. Sometimes art with lines that art too polished and smooth can get a bit boring after awhile. I feel like I get more of an understanding of an artists style and emotions behind a comic when the art feels a little more raw. Theres not much in the way of shading or really dark contrasting values but Fumino does use dark screentones and black backgrounded panels during tense or darker moments to really bring them out and separate them from the rest of the story.
95 /100
7 out of 8 users liked this review