Author Kaori Ozaki
This review contains a few light spoilers. I’ve kept the details low about them though so proceed with caution based on your own level of spoiler tolerance. Also, most of you know very well that you’re not going to buy a manga you probably haven’t heard of and won’t read it anyway so treat yourself to some mild spoilers already!
The Gods Lie is a manga about two young teens finding each other one summer vacation. It’s in many ways a traditional summer romance. The difference with this one is that it is grounded in the real world and ends the way most real summer romances end. In delusional tragedy.
Two middle schoolers of the same neighborhood cross paths one summer and quickly bond over having a lack of parental figures. One has a neglectful mother and the other is left home alone with their younger brother after the death of her grandfather.
She’s been fending for herself and has an even bigger secret that she’s been keeping from everyone. She’s been forced to mature very quickly and her strength shows as much as her worry.
When her secret is exposed you’ll understand her frugality and lack of childlike behavior.
Over the summer they fall easily in love and come to rely on each other. The absolutely tragic part comes at the end when they are torn apart for very realistic reasons but ones that the reader will not want to accept.
The reader will likely side with the narrator under an umbrella of delusional hope. They trick themselves into thinking that their paths will cross again one day but we know that that cannot be true.
The whole story happens very quickly and it is important to keep in the mindset of an adolescent. Try to remember how easy it was to develop feelings for someone back then and how quickly the whole world could change.
As with nearly all manga books I’ve ever picked up this one can be read in just over an hour. It’s a nice way to end a day but be prepared to be more saddened than uplifted.
The gods are said to lie because it is the best they can do to protect us. The book ends on a lie of hope because people must lie to each other to spare feelings and not suffer in the despair of existence.
It’s a lovely story regardless of how you feel emotionally at the end. Personally, I enjoy a good bummer ending every once in a while. Shakes things up, reinforces my nihilism.
Dive in and enjoy a not so typical young romance.
4/5 soccer balls cause the boy plays soccer and that’s on the cover but I don’t care about sports very much so I didn’t mention it before but 4/5 soccer balls ⚽⚽⚽⚽
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Buy it here: The Gods Lie