I Cannot Reach You

Alt title: Kimi ni wa Todokanai.

Vol: 8+; Ch: 41+
2018 - ?
4.196 out of 5 from 297 votes
Rank #925
I Cannot Reach You

The differences between Yamato and Kakeru couldn't be more obvious. Yamato gets good grades, while Kakeru's are less than average. And while Yamato is very attractive, Kakeru's looks are perfectly average. Not a problem—unless you're in love with your childhood best friend…How in the world can Kakeru make Yamato look at him when Yamato is completely out of his league?!

Source: Yen Press

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This is a simple story about two dudes being awkwardly in love and thinking the other couldn't possibly return his feelings and the subsequent shenanigans and drama that ensue from being in that situation, but you know what? It's executed so well that I don't care that it's simple. It's cute and fun. It does get serious at times and deals with the reality of being in love with your childhood friend of the same gender, but ultimately it's pretty comedic in nature (at least from what I've read). The character dynamics here are great. Kakeru and Yamato are both well developed (for a BL at least) and are believable. I enjoy their interactions a lot and the pure awkwardness of it all. I totally buy that they've developed crushes on each other and while, yes, the problem would be solved if one of them just said something, it makes sense that they're both too nervous to do so because they're worried they'll destroy their friendship. The side characters are also decent and aren't just there to be plot hinderences, which I appreciate. Sure, they do provide some of the drama, but they don't feel as shoehorned in as the side characters in some series do, especially the female characters. I've only read the first two volumes but I'm interested to see how this relationship develops. There's nothing too deep here and it is indeed pretty simple but it's simple in a really good way. PS "Mutual unrequited love" is an under-used trope in my opinion and I love it a lot when it's done right. Imo it's slightly different to "mutual pining" because there's typically more drama involved and the pining doesn't always include the whole "Oh but they'll never love me back / I can't confess because it'll ruin our already existing relationship" angles. There's more of a bitterness to it to me. That's how I personally view it, at least. Either way, it's goddamn tasty.

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