Nozaki and his male friends play an otome game (and get pretty into it) because Ken, Nozaki's favorite editor, offers it to him and Nozaki desperately wants to be friends with him. Readers get to meet Nozaki's good-looking but lazy younger brother, see how his parents reacted when he decided to move out for his own convenience, etc. The joke about Wakamatsu loving Lorelei (who he's never met) and being aggravated by Seo (who he doesn't realize is Lorelei) continues. Nozaki uses Mikoshiba and Sakura to test out a manga idea about meeting up and using cellphones as little as possible, and there's a joke about Nozaki trying to learn to do backgrounds. He can't seem to
get characters' heights right, so he keeps having to put them on boxes.
I recalled previous volumes being better, but that might just have been comedy burnout. Still, there were good bits. I laughed at the parts with Nozaki's brother, who Miyako liked to draw without his shirt on. I also enjoyed the bit about Ken trying to win Nozaki over when he first became Nozaki's editor (Nozaki expected Ken to be like his previous editor, the one who now forces Miyako to put tanuki in all her manga). The only thing Ken had to do was
know the names of five characters in Nozaki's manga, which underscores just how bad his previous editor was.
As far as manga creation goes, Hori really comes across as a more serious manga creator than Nozaki. In his volume he kept stopping to take reference photos for his background work, whereas Nozaki couldn't seem to get the hang of doing his own backgrounds.
Oh, and I enjoyed the otome game bit, especially since I've played so many visual novels in the past year. This particular otome game was bizarre. The most normal seeming guy in the game turned out to
(Original review posted on A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions.)