REVIEW: ‘An Incurable Case of Love,’ Volume 6

Reading Time: 3 minutes

An Incurable Case of Love Volume 6

VIZ Media’s Shojo Beat imprint offers both josei and shojo romances that have kept me in love with the genre. That said, my favorite so far comes from mangaka Maki Enjoji: An Incurable Case of Love. In the series, Nanasae Sakura witnesses a handsome and charming young doctor save a stranger’s life. This one event charts out her course to becoming a nurse. But, five years later, when she lands her first nursing job, she’s reunited with the doctor, Kairi Tendo. Over the course of the last five volumes, we’ve watched their relationship move from bickering rivals in the hospital to lovey-dovey and even surviving their first love triangle. But in An Incurable Case of Love Volume 6, their relationship and their problems are taken to the next level.

Translated into English by JN Productions and featuring touch-up art and lettering by Inori Fukada Trant, An Incurable Case of Love Volume 6 covers chapters 26 through 30 of the series and ultimately centers around two main incidents in our protagonists’ relationship. The first is spurred when Tendo’s older sister Ryuko goes missing and leaves instructions for Nanase to take her place with Tendo. What does that mean? Well, it means doing his laundry, shopping for him, and all the domestic duties that Ryoku covered for her brother. This ultimately pushes the topic of moving in together on the table and makes both parties uncomfortable – but for wholely different reasons.

While there have been some communication issues in the past, Nanase and Tendo have many of them in this volume. When it comes to living together, Tendo is trying to be considerate of Nanase, pushing her away so that she doesn’t feel like she has to do chores. To him, she’s more than just domesticity. That said, to Nanase, it makes her feel less like a woman to be pushed from the domestic elements of his life. Now, while I’m not a fan of reinforcing gendered housework, the way the couple interacts and works through their issues is awkward, but in a relatable way. The two are pushed to communicate boundaries, and it’s refreshing to see it so plainly explained.

The big moving-in-question only takes up the first half of An Incurable Case of Love Volume 6. The second event that triggers a crisis for Nanase and Tendo is a new doctor connected to Tendo’s ex. You know, the ex who died, causing him to devote his career to curing the disease she had? Yeah, he still hasn’t processed that grief yet. This is what propels the last half of the volume in a frustrating game of lack of communication that only josei can pull off.

That said, the issues around Tendo’s ex are resolved by Nanase having the maturity to see that Tendo needs to close that chapter in his life and understand that the chapter is still open, despite pretending otherwise. While Tendo hides his struggles from Nanase, it gets frustrating from a reader’s perspective as the looming “studying abroad” comes back again. But ultimately, the way that Enjoji writes their conflict and resolution is not only wholesome but loving. That said, An Incurable Case of Love Volume 6 stumbles the same way most josei romances do – with the female character giving up more of herself than her male partner does. Now, the give and take between Tendo and Nanase is written so that you think that Nanase is using it to better herself, but in the end, it’s tied back to Tendo, the same way her career is.

An Incurable Case of Love Volume 6 shows that Nanase is like other josei heroines, in love and willing to sacrifice everything for it, while doing everything she can to ensure that her boyfriend doesn’t give up anything the process. Don’t get me wrong, I love Tendo and Nanase as a couple, and Enjoji takes time to show Tendo’s more emotional side to round him out as a good tsundere character. Additionally, their chemistry in Enjoji’s illustration of the couple’s intimate moments is well done. Those moments are both sexy and loving in Enjoji’s signature style.

Overall, An Incurable Case of Love Volume 6 is still a good continuation of a great series and one of my favorite josei titles currently in English print. While the heroine has her issues, the way that Tendo and Nanase have developed over time is getting close to a satisfying conclusion.

An Incurable Case of Love Volume 6 is available from booksellers now.

An Incurable Case of Love Volume 6
4.5

TL;DR

Overall, An Incurable Case of Love Volume 6 is still a good continuation of a great series and one of my favorite josei titles currently in English print. While the heroine has her issues, the way that Tendo and Nanase have developed over time is getting close to a satisfying conclusion.