REVIEW: ‘Don’t Be Cruel: Plus+,’ Volume 2

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Don't Be Cruel: Plus+ Volume 2

Don’t Be Cruel is a nine-volume BL manga from VIZ Media’s BL publishing imprint SuBLime, and to be honest, it’s one of my favorites. Over the course of nine volumes, readers got the chance to see playboy Maya catches studious Nemugasa begin their relationship in high school and watch it evolve from a blackmail agreement to a loving and caring adult relationship as the two leave college by the series end. Created, written, and illustrated by mangaka Yonezou Nekota, Don’t Be Cruel has continued with side story volumes focused on one of the side couples and in Don’t Be Cruel: Plus+, Maya and Nemugasa.

Don’t Be Cruel: Plus+ is published and localized in English by SuBLime, translated by Adrienne Beck, features touch-up art and lettering from Vanessa Satone, cover and design by Yukiko Whitley, and is edited by Jennifer LeBlanc. Now, to start, before the Don’t Be Cruel: Plus+ side story series, I tended to not care too much about additional stories. I wanted to get my main series, the main story, and didn’t care too much outside of that. But, Nekota has created such a loving couple that I found myself not only drawn to again but excited to see more of. Now in this collection, Don’t Be Cruel: Plus+ Volume 2, fans get the chance to see more moments of Maya and Nemgegusa.

The best thing about Don’t Be Cruel: Plus+ Volume 2 is that the side stories vary in timing. With small details provided at the beginning of each one, some take place after Volume 9 of the series and some take place in-between moments and chapters of the series. This allows Nekota to build on Maya and Nemgusa’s relationship in a way that showcases different elements we haven’t seen before while also expanding on those we have.

One story expands on Volume 3’s New Year’s date and one even adds more moments to their Traditional Japanese Hotel trip. For moments like this, Nekota does a great job of expertly working in where a reader can head to in order to get details filled in. That said, readers definitely can’t read Don’t Be Cruel: Plus+ Volume 2 without reading the series prior. While you can still get all the steamy moments, a lot of the emotion and impact from the short stories come from understanding where the couple was in their story arc where they take place. Additionally, some of the side stories run the length of usual chapters and the same art but there are also some smaller two-page shorts worked into this volume as well.

Now, it definitely should be noted that this title is a mature one, filled with steamy scenes that give fans of the series exactly what they’re looking for. But Nekota’s ability to illustrate intimate moments remains some of their best work and has really helped to not only see the couple mature but also become more emotionally intimate as well. Even the moments of intimacy that are cut with humor work well to showcase just how far the pair’s relationship has come.

Overall, Don’t Be Cruel: Plus+ Volume 2 is such a great read that enhances the story we got in the series main volumes. It’s a wonderful addition to the series that is a must-buy for fans.

Don’t Be Cruel: Plus+ Volume 2 is available from booksellers now.

Don't Be Cruel: Plus+ Volume 2 
5

TL;DR

Overall, Don’t Be Cruel: Plus+ Volume 2 is such a great read that enhances the story we got in the series main volumes. It’s a wonderful addition to the series that is a must-buy for fans.