Scum's Wish Vol. 1 TP
Publisher: Yen Press
Release Date: October 25, 2016
Price: $15.00
Creator: Mengo Yokoyari
Format: 176 pgs., Black & White, Trade Paperback
ISBN: 978-0-3164-6372-0
Age Rating: 16+
ICv2 Rating: 4 Stars out of 5

Scum's Wish probably is unlike anything else you've read this year.  It's more than likely unlike anything that you'll read next year as well. On the surface it appears that this is another teenage love story.  The main characters are Mugi and Hanabi, high school students who are dating each other.

To everyone on the outside it looks like they are the perfect couple who are blissfully happy together.  What no one realizes however is that their relationship is a complete sham and they are really only using each other for physical pleasure and comfort due to the fact that they are each in love with someone else.

In this opening volume, we are introduced to the various characters that will inhabit our minds for the coming months as this story unfolds.  Possibly the most interesting thing to be found within these pages is that fact that the main characters are truly sympathetic.  You can argue that what they're doing is wrong but is it really?  All they are doing is comforting each other through lonely times; they aren't being dishonest with themselves or each other regarding how they feel.  It's a very solemn relationship that is grounded in reality.

The one spot within the story that stands in an unhappy contrast to the primary plot is the introduction of the character Moka.  Moka plays the role of the childhood best friend who still has feelings for the male lead.  What's strange about her character though is that she's so stereotypical in her over the top mannerisms and personality traits that she feels like she doesn't even belong in the series.  It's as though she were shoehorned in to keep things from becoming too serious which strikes me as a real shame as the story was going along swimmingly up until the point where Moka enters.

This is a book for teens and adults who are looking for a not so typical love story that will leave you wondering what is going to come next by the time you reach the end of the first volume.  A solid addition to anyone's library.

--L.B. Bryant