Kodansha Comics; $12.99
As he nears the end of his high school career, Kinichiro Imamura has a lot of regrets. His first day of school didn’t go as planned, and everyone pegged him for a bad kid. After reminiscing about the school’s Ouendan (cheer) club, he begins to regret how high school panned out for him. A chance encounter with a classmate also goes awry, but after blacking out, he wakes up… on the first day of his freshman year! That’s right, he’s got a do-over of high school in its entirety, beginning with joining the Ouendan Club.
Of course, he’s not the only one who got warped back three years – so did his classmate who fell down the stairs with him, Aki. Unlike Kinichiro, Aki was a popular student with a boyfriend, and her do-over isn’t going quite as smoothly as she had hoped.
Time-travel stories have been around forever, but Again!! succeeds where others have not by being able to balance truly funny dialogue with just enough drama to keep you turning the pages without getting worn down by it. Mitsurou Kubo is best known for her work on Yuri!! On Ice, and Again!! carries much of the same vivid expressiveness and relatable, personable characters that the popular ice skating story did. Anyone looking for a solid high school story is encouraged to give this one a try.