Title: Kitchen Princess
Manga-ka: Natsumi Ando & Miyuki Kobayashi
Kitchen Princess was another find during an excursion to a used bookstore. I had the original Japanese version sitting on my shelf due to laziness. So I used the Del Rey version to help me read along.
Kitchen Princess deals with Najika, a girl who transfers to a new school to find her Flan Prince as he’s called in the Del Rey version (I kept thinking of him as the Pudding Prince but that sounds so retarded in English XD). The Flan Prince is a boy Najika met after her parents died. He cheered her up by giving her some pudding, er, flan. Leaving only an intricately designed spoon behind, Najika is determined to find him again and thank him for his kindness – with food :D Time goes by and she learns of a school that has spoons with a similar pattern as the one her Prince left (yeah, what are the chances >_>; a little kid walking around with a rare expensive one of kind spoon…Najika better be lucky he didn’t have one of those cheap fast food plastic sporks XD That would have ended Kitchen Princess real quick). When Najika gets to school, she finds she has been enrolled into a special class for awesome people (or so the people in that class like to think of themselves). Unhappy that Najika isn’t someone awesome, her classmates instantly think little of her. From here Najika goes through several trails which threaten to shake her loose from her conviction of finding the Flan Prince!
I’m of mixed opinion on this manga. On one hand, I like it because of the cooking. I like Najika trying to bring happiness to people with her cooking. In fact, I liked chapter #1 the best because I thought that was what this series was going to be about – cheering people up or whatever through means of cooking.
On the other hand, I pretty much hate everyone so far in this manga. I don’t know what their problem is. They all hate Najika but when she makes something, they all love her. But then the next chapter starts and they hate her again. It’s like when they make a McDookie, the substance that brought such happiness into their lives goes down and away with their toilet flushing, leaving them cold and angry. I especially didn’t like Akane. I never liked bullies but I hate two faced liars even more. Don’t smile in Najika’s face then stab her when her back is turned! Daichi and Sora don’t leave much of an impact on me either. Daichi even turned a blind eye to when Najika was getting bullied (ass).
I’m not a fan of manga about bullying so maybe this is why I don’t like Kitchen Princess much. The end of the manga gave me some hope. Of course, from the summary on volume #2, it’s still about bullying =_=; I’m going to try volume #2 just to see how it is (plus I can use it to help improve my reading skills in Japanese).
Here’s the summary on the back:
Najika is a great cook and likes to make meals for the people she loves. But something is missing from her life. When she was a child, she met a boy who touched her heart – and now Najika is determined to find him. The only clue she has is a silver spoon that leads her to the prestigious Seika Academy.
Attending Seika will be a challenge. Every kid at the school has a special talent, and the girls in Najika’s class think she doesn’t deserve to be there. But Sora and Daichi, two popular brothers who barely speak to each other, recognize Najika’s cooking for what it is: magical. Is either boy Najika’s mysterious prince?