High school student Hikaru Saito is in trouble. She is failing English because she’d much rather bury her nose in the latest manga than study pronouns and prepositions. To keep her from getting kicked out of school, she is assigned a tutor in the form of the most popular boy in school: golden-haired genius Takeshi Hinata.
You’d think Takeshi would be Hikaru’s surefire way to academic success, but her stubbornness, lack of concentration, and general disinterest in things other than her precious manga frustrate Takeshi to no end. To make matters worse, a young, pretty boy teacher is determined to rescue Hikaru every chance he gets, riling Takeshi up even more—and confusing the hell out of Hikaru.
But as they spend more time together and get to know each other beyond their high school reputations, Hikaru and Takeshi enter a situation neither of them expected to find themselves in—one that factors in stolen kisses, controlling parents, a princess-in-hiding, and the deepest yearnings of a teenage heart.
About a month or so ago, Tara, another author friend of mine, decided to read the book Songs of Our Breakup. She spazzed about it, live tweeted the heck out of it, and was imploring our small group of friends to read it too. I was curious. But when I looked into buying Songs of Our Breakup (“Songs”), I discovered that the author Jay E. Tria had another book, her first book, Blossom Among Flowers (“Blossom”). I really was planning on getting Songs, first. But Blossom’s book blurb just made it impossible to pass up.
I read the book in less than five hours. Oh yeah, I took note. Because it was a work day, and I couldn’t focus, and I rushed to finish all my work stuff just so I can set aside two hours of lunch to read the next hundred pages—the first hundred I read in the same amount of time before I clocked in that morning. Whatever was left, I read in about thirty minutes, hidden away in the office pantry, as soon as five o’clock rolled around.
This book consumed me as aggressively as I devoured it.
Basically, Blossom and I made out like teenagers. And it was awesome. ♥
Hikaru dropped her chin on the hard edge of the table, bruising herself a magnificent purple. Her right hand reached fort he manga on its own accord.
The death of your academic hopes.
I was right when I chose to read this book. It did exactly what I thought it would do, and more. It gave me the YA vibe that I was a sucker for (still am and always will be), the straight forward student-tutor-kilig dynamic, the guys—oh, the cute guys, and the feeling of fluffy happiness from the familiar romantic formula written and executed in a way that was completely unique to Jay E. Tria.
Reading Blossom felt like reading one of the mangas Hikaru, the main character, was so obsessed about. The characters felt alive, animated, and real. But at the same time they also felt like the fantasies and ideals I never knew I still craved for.
Hanazakari No Kimitachi E, Princess Hours, Meteor Garden… three of the many Asian drama staples from my childhood and teenage years. This book reminded me of those stories that I lived for and obsessed over. Jay E. Tria seemingly performed hypnosis on me with her words and brought out repressed crazy-fangirl-feels, so much that I was laughing into the pages of the book and kicking at things at certain parts.
I did a lot of it at Starbucks when I was reading the first hundred pages. Kind of embarrassing.
Hikaru and Miss Matsuda turned to the young man that had intruded in the small cubicle. He towered over them both. He had a full mouth and short light brown hair and a pair of intensely brown eyes. The first word that entered Hikaru’s mind was ‘pretty’.
I mean, talk about a fandom explosion. At every turn of the page I watched the handsome Sunbae* ideal go head to head against the pretty boy Senpai* ideal and just… guys, if you watch enough KDramas and JDoramas you know how epic that is and how utterly insane it could make someone. That is like, the perfect rivalry—one that every fangirl in the world either dreamed of or dreaded.
BECAUSE HOW DO YOU CHOOSE?!
**Senpai: It originates from anime and manga. It’s someone older than you. Someone you look up to. If they give the slightest attention to you, you sort of explode.
Hikaru was jumping on the balls of her feet. “Takeshi,” she breathed, barely containing her thrill. “I don’t think I’ll be needing cram school.”
And that was probably my favorite scene, or at least the most memorable one, if only for what came after. You have been warned. Feelsplosion is afoot as soon as you encounter that line and you better gird your loins and hold on to your heart.
But yes, please, I am begging you. If you are or were in the Asian drama/manga/pop fandom, you better get off your butt and buy this book. You will not regret it…
Or you will, depending on how you process amazeballs.
In any case just do what I did: blame the author. She will love it.
I have evidence so you can totally quote me on that. 😉
About The Author
Jay E. Tria likes to read manga, watch J-doramas, and invent her own satisfying endings in her head. Blossim Among Flowers is her first completed work, and her first attempt to share her own happily-ever-after story with you. She also reads, daydreams, and blogs. She is not a cool kid. Visit her website at www.jayetria.com.