Review: Taiyou no Uta

English Title:
A Song to the Sun
Genre: Drama, Romance, Slice of Life
Author: Minatsuki Tsunami
Manga: 1 volume
Movie: Midnight Sun (Song to the Sun)
Book: by Bandou Kenji

Amane Kaoru is a teenage girl who only experiences life at night because of her rare skin condition, xeroderma pigmentosum (XP) that does not allow her to be exposed to ultraviolet radiation. Every night, she sings in the train station. A chance encounter with a boy whom she had secretly been admiring from her window everyday marks the start of romance between them.

Story: Since this manga is an adaption from a book by Bandou Kenji, I believe it is proper that I give the credits to him. The story is very fascinating. Yes, the plot is very common, however the circumstances, the events, and the selfless love and care of the guy in the story really gives it its own unique solid identity. As for how it was turned to manga, I give two thumbs-up for Minatsuki Tsunami for a job well-done in the adaption.

Art: Drawing and artwork in the manga is satisfactory. You can clearly see the character's emotions and has good setting, sometimes I'm amazed how the place is really like the real thing in Japan! It is quite simple and very clean. Some might say it lacks some life into it, shadowing and more movement. However, for me, the mood that the style of art gives off is fitting for the story of the manga.

Characters: The characters in the story stand out in one thing, they prove to readers that despite some handicaps and a few hindrances, it must not keep you from doing your best in pursuing your dreams. Some tragic love stories that tell of the death of one of the protagonists because of an illness, ends up with the lovers living together, or meeting up often, and just plain trying to make use of the time they have left. However, Taiyou no Uta, focuses more on helping each other to achieve their dreams with the little time they have to spare.

Romance/ Romantic Relationships: The relationship between Kaoru and Kouji experiences difficulties due to Kaoru's skin disease. However, the story shows how they soon cope with their circumstances and how they learn to live to the fullest with the little options they have. Both of them change in the story into more mature individuals that makes their relationship firm while always loving, and caring for each other.

Personal Comments: I really cried while reading this! I don't usually cry when it's only manga since I'm mostly touched only when it's anime or a movie. However, it really made me cry. It is a very common plot, I admit. But Taiyou no Uta has it's own uniqueness. Personally, I would recommend this for those who love romance stories, dramas, and tear-jerkers. It's one of my favorite in the tear-jerker category for manga since so far, only three manga have made me cry out of around 10 that touched me and it is one of the three, together with Fruits Basket and Renri no Eda.