[REVIEW] The Men of Yoshiwara: Kagerou Main Volume

Yoshiwara Kagerou

Slightly frightened by the experienced courtesans in Kikuya, the MC asks to spend her time with Kagerou, a youth close to her own age apprenticed to Kagura. While his beauty is pleasing to the eye, his brusque words catch her by surprise; however, she slowly starts to learn that his words don’t always voice his true feelings. As they get closer with every encounter they share, the MC struggles to deal with her growing feelings for him as his debut as a full-fledged courtesan inevitably approaches.

The youngest of the romancable characters in the game, Kagerou give off the aura of being a polished and well-mannered young man. Apprenticed to Kagura, he’s not able to take clients of his own until his debut as a courtesan; however, he has many admirers waiting for the day they can bid for his time and affections. Like his mentor, Kagerou has a deep appreciation and thirst for knowledge; he admires Kagura for pushing himself intellectually and physically despite being confined to Yoshiwara and strives to do the same. Kagerou is the definition of tsundere; he has a hard time honestly voicing his feelings and usually expresses them harsher than he intends to XD I think the writers did a good job of portraying him between the lines of childhood and adulthood; while he lives in an environment that urges him to quickly become an adult, you slowly start to see the pure (and slightly childish) heart he has as the story progresses.

Kagerou is very much aware of his position in Yoshiwara. While he’s able to leave during the day to pursue his studies, he knows that he’ll soon have to debut as a courtesan and will be confined to the red light district. He values his freedom and envies the MC for her own, but his pride won’t allow him to be bought out of Yoshiwara; he’d much rather leave by his own power. I found Kagerou’s freedom to come and go as he pleased a welcome change to the story; it was a twist you didn’t get to see with the other characters and gave possibilities for new plot elements.

The MC and Kagerou are well matched in that they haven’t experienced love yet; this route is one both of them experience what it means to fall in love. While their initial impressions of each other aren’t the best, they’re curious of each other because neither has spent a lot of time around someone of a similar age as their own. Their curiosity leads to them spending more time together, and as time passes they both fall headfirst into their first loves. This story is definitely more innocent compared to the other characters; neither the MC nor Kagerou have slept with or had intimate physical contact before, and once again, I found this to be a welcome change.

While the pacing was a bit fast-paced in the beginning, I think it mirrors how rashly young people fall in love and worked out for this particular story. Kagerou’s pride is the main conflict in this story; he pushes away help from others because of his wanting to accomplish things on his own. The plot and their relationship was written extremely well until the end; I was a bit dissatisfied with how Kagerou’s pride was dealt with. I found myself emotionally invested in the story; I was ready to grab a box of tissues towards the end ; w ;

Kagerou’s story is definitely one of my favorites in the game, and I highly recommend it. While some people may not like the ending, the story and the relationship between Kagerou and the MC will definitely grow on you. I think Kagerou is a character many people would like (I know I do XD ). Happy playing!

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