Wataru Yoshizumi is a Japanese mangaka born as Mari Nakai on June 18, 1963 in Tokyo, Japan. She finished Hitotsubashi University as an economist to start combining her office work with manga writing. Her debut, a yomikiri (short story) Radical Romance, was published in 1984 (Ribon Original's summer issue).
Yoshizumi's most mangas target girls (shoujo manga) with later works for maturer readers in the josei genre. She's mainly published in Ribon and Chorus. Her mangas published so far are:
* Radical Romance (1984)
* Quartet Game (1988)
* Handsome na Kanojo (1988-1992)
* Marmalade Boy (1992-1995)
* Kimi Shika Iranai (1996)
* Mint na Bokura (1997-2000)
* Random Walk (2000)
* Ultra Maniac (2002-2004)
* Datte Suki Nandamon (2005)
* Cherish (2006)
* Happiness (2006)
* PxP (2007)
* Spicy Pink (2007)
* Cappuccino (2008)
* Chitose etc. (2009)
Manga Handsome na Kanojo (aka Handsome Girlfriend) is Yoshizumi's 1st big manga (published 1988 to 1992). Its 9 volumes underlay a 37-minute anime in 1991. The heroine, Hagiwara Mio, is a teen actress in love with her neighbor and coactor Morimoto Teruomi. Her drama role upsets her with its bossy antagonism against her friend Sawagi Aya. However Teru's part there makes Mio take the role. But when another coactor gets discontent with her job, her career becomes too problematic.
Another big shoujo is Marmalade Boy printed 1992 to 1995 in 8 volumes. Unlike Handsome Girlfriend, it underlay a full anime series of 76 episodes and a 26-minute animated movie. Besides, 1995 saw its Game Boy and Super Famicom-based game release. Miki Koishikawa's idyllic family life ended with her parents hosting another couple (as in swinging). Now she faces 4 parents, her cute stepbrother Yuu and their strange soap opera. But Miki escapes to a world of loving friends, hateful schoolmates and crushes on Ginta and Yuu!
Kimi Shika Iranai (aka I Need Only You) was released in 2 volumes in 1996. Young Totoki Atsumu tries to win back his only love Kurihara Akane. But her vague past makes that rather troublesome...
A 6-volume Mint na Bokura (We are Mint, 1997-2000) describes 2 close twins, Maria and Noel. To follow her in her new basketball school he has to pretend and play a girl due to no boy spots there! In a follow-up comedy Noel falls in love with a fellow girl, while being courted himself.
Random Walk, Yoshizumi's popular manga, came out in 3 volumes in 2000. The story depicts Yuka, a newly senior pupil next door to her mystery writer dad and his new wife. He taught Yuka only to live in love. In high school she looks for her one true passion. Will this always be just a dream?
Ultra Maniac (2002-4) underlay a 26-episode anime series in 2003 covering the 1st 3 volumes out of 5. It's Yoshizumi's 1st fantasy manga. There teenaged Nina Sakura hides her true identity of a transfer student from a fantasy witch school! At a real middle school she hopes to improve, socialize and charm her unaware fellows.
2005 featured Datte Suki Nandamon in 2 volumes about Moka's brother Megu returning from New York City. An art lover, at a library she meets Masato-kun whom she starts liking. But will Moka's determination change this latent playboy?
Yoshizumi's allegedly 1st josei, Cherish manga also includes Happiness. In Cherish its heroine Chihiro enters the university of her deceased mother and stepfather. She opens this new chapter with thrill but faces her past reminders! While ex returns, she feels someone's chase.
One-shot from 2 Happiness chapters was also published beside Cherish. In it young Akatsu-kun loves his cute coworker, Kayano-san. Once he saw a little boy reading Playboy in a store to realize he was Kayano-san's son!
Yoshizumi's another josei is a 2-volume Spicy Pink (2007). It shows Sakura, a busy shoujo mangaka without private life. At a goukon she meets a tough doctor who surprisingly starts courting her.
A 1-volume PxP manga (Baby It's You, 2007) is the author's mystery genre try. A school council discusses a strange case of "P", a mysteriously hired thief stealing only particular items.
One of Yoshizumi's latest complete mangas is Cappuccino (2008), also in josei like her most ones. It's a bittersweet love story of Kojima Ari and Fujitani Sousuke living together without marriage.
After writing over a dozen mangas for the last 15 years, Wataru Yoshizumi keeps pleasing her readers with new activity. So 2009 had Chitose and others released. As a social mangaka, Yoshizumi likes traveling and shopping. She also befriends fellow authors - Naoko Takeuchi, Ai Yazawa, Miho Obana and Megumi Mizusawa.
If you like shoujo manga, Pamela suggests visiting the website AnyManga.com to read the Mint na Bokura manga
or Cherish manga online