Haru Hana: The Complete Collection
written by Yuana Kazumi
A lot of girls can be nervous about having relationships with guys. But with Hana, things are much worse. She’s had a problem of breaking out in hives when she gets touched by boys! Drinking green tea makes her all better afterward…or until the next time she gets touched.
After living in Osaka, Hana moves to Tokyo to live with her sister while her parents are in England. She expects this to be a bright new start for her life and is convinced she’s overcome her condition. It turns out that’s not the case. The boy she meets named Haru still makes her break into hives. And then Hana’s older sister pretty much forces Hana to get a job at a relaxation shop. Guess who one of her coworkers is? Yes, of course it’s Haru—so much for relaxation!
It’d be a cozy little shop if Hana weren’t so nervous about Haru. While she does cleaning duty, he works as a masseuse. And he’s not any ordinary masseuse, as it’s his job to heal people emotionally and not just get their bodies feeling better. He’s so empathic that people always feel better after he’s laid his hands on them (except for Hana, who just gets itchy).
While Hana and Haru start out annoyed at each other, they gradually get closer. Hana plays her violin at the shop and shows her own healing power is in music. Things begin lightly comedic and silly (the hives being symbolic for people’s nervousness) and it’s all set up for Hana and Haru to fall for each other. However, things get increasingly darker, so that the story is dealing with life and death situations by the end.
Despite some of the darker tones, Haru Hana never gets overly morose. It remains an easygoing read. It’s nice how Hana is a character with spunky attitude, and that she gains some confidence in herself as time goes on. She’s shown as sort of a “regular person” in the sense that she doesn’t get dolled up or fuss with her looks. She’s more down-to-earth than that. She’s also a skilled violinist and it’s shown how this talent can make a difference in people’s lives. It’s likewise sweet to see how close she gets to the people involved in the shop, as if they’re family.
Haru Hana is a three-volume manga series and here is available as a complete collection. This is less expensive than buying the three volumes individually, so anyone interested in getting all three books might prefer to simply buy this.