Fallen Sakura - April Moone This review can be found at The Armchair Reader.

This story tells the tale of Kobayashi Haru who meets Sakurai Aki while he’s watching cherry blossoms fall on the anniversary of his mother’s death. Haru can’t help but try to engage Sakurai in conversation because of how sad and alone Sakurai looks. Haru immediately feels a connection with Sakurai and makes Sakurai grudgingly give Haru his number. From there, they start an awkward friendship made of up of weird behavior. Haru, though, thinks Sakurai is straight so when their relationship turns sexual, he’s on cloud nine… until he realizes Sakurai’s been keeping a big secret from him and Haru might not be as special to Sakurai as he was lead to believe.

This was the first story I read by Ms. Moone. While the writing wasn’t flawless and the plot isn’t exactly serious or intense, it is smooth and very easy to read. The story is very entertaining and drew me in to the point that it was a fast read as well. I really liked it but then again, I’m a yaoi lover so it’s no surprise I enjoyed it. I will admit this story stretches the boundaries of realism and embraces some childish behavior.

Kobayashi Haru is a shy but fragile man. He has horrible luck in men, tends to fall in love too easily and then gets his heartbroken while thinking it was somehow his fault for his ex’s problems. He has a drinking problem and tends to go on binges, waking up with hangovers and then doing it all over again. He’s an emotional person and doesn’t really like being alone but more than that, he just wants to be loved. Sakurai is an enigma. Actually, we really don’t know much about him besides the fact he’s gentle with Haru but also strange around him. He’s cold then warm and it’s quite confusing but you can’t help but love the mysteriousness around him. He holds a secret that everyone seems to know but Haru, which is why he’s so cold to Haru at first.

I won’t lie and say this book doesn’t have its problems. The plot is like a roller-coaster that deals with a lot of issues. More than anything Haru’s actions are over the top and dramatic. He’s kind of needy and immature. He does some stupid things and makes some stupid decisions but that is what I liked about this book. It wasn’t a heavy story but it still managed to get across some level of angst and Haru’s feelings across, at least for me. My only fault with the book was the amount of sex there was. I felt like nothing was resolved in the story because Haru and Sakurai would jump into bed before they would talk anything through. Beyond that, I really wished we could have gotten to know Sakurai better. I loved him as a character, more than Haru, so getting his view of things would have made the story deeper.

With all that said, I found this book fun. Yeah, the main character isn’t exactly a mature adult and the plot is a tad outlandish when it comes to the Japanese setting but I enjoyed it very much for the lightness it gave. It’s not a book that everyone will love, some might even think it is silly or ridiculous, but if you look passed all the clichés and the drinking (especially that), you might just find it as entertaining as I did. It was like a daytime soap opera that I couldn’t stop watching, but the ending was sweet, which left me with a little smile.