In Japan, this single category is typically used for all types of these relationships, whether sexual or not. In the West, the term Shounen-ai refers to stories that focus on the emotional aspects of relationships, whereas Yaoi refers to stories that focus on sexual aspects, such as Smut or explicit content. Because the majority of our audience is from the West, we use the Western definition for both Yaoi and Shounen-ai.
So, without wasting any time let’s start our list of shounen ai manga.
9. Karasugaoka Don’t be shy!!
To prevent crime in Karasugaoka, two volunteer groups have been formed: “VOICE” and “Karasukai,” which are in charge of the east and west areas, respectively. Sou Izuhara and Shinba Tetsuji, the groups’ leaders, are unable to get along with each other, resulting in arguments every time they meet. In reality, Sou greatly admires Shinba, having been rescued by him as a child; however, embarrassed by his feelings, Sou ends up insulting Shinba instead.
Will Sou be able to muster the courage to confess his true feelings to Shinba as the two crime fighters continue to help their community?
8. Komatta Toki ni wa Hoshi ni Kike!
Takara is short, cute, and has an inferiority complex, whereas Kiyomine is tall, blunt, and has a sister complex. Takara moves into the dorms for his first year of high school after his grandmother dies, so he won’t have to live alone. Kiyomine, the boy sitting next to him at the opening ceremony, makes fun of him, and when they go to the dorms later, they discover they are roommates.
With such a bad first impression, they fight constantly until Takara decides to leave because Kiyomine despises him so much. Kiyomine clarifies that he does not hate Takara; he simply assumed Takara despised him. They apologise and settle into their pleasant, peaceful dorm life. Unless they don’t?
7. I Hear the Sunspot
Kohei, who has a hearing impairment, is frequently misunderstood and has difficulty integrating into campus life, so he learns to keep his distance. That is, until he meets the outgoing and upbeat Taichi. He tells Kohei that it is not his fault that he is deaf. Taichi’s words pierced through Kohei’s usual defences and opened his heart. Their relationship, more than friends and less than lovers, alters Kohei’s life forever.
6. Boku ga Otto ni Deau made
This collection of stories recounts the author’s “firsts” as a young gay man looking for love, from school crushes to awkward dating sites to finding a community. Dating is never easy, but it’s especially difficult for Ryousuke, whose journey is fraught with unrequited love and numerous speed bumps. However, perseverance and time heal all wounds, including those of the heart.
5. Hirano to Kagiura
Hirano, a second-year high school student, lives in a campus dormitory and has recently become roommates with Kagiura, a first-year student. Kagiura is a hardworking basketball team member, but he struggles to get out of bed in the morning, leaving Hirano to be his support system in that regard. They get along well, and Hirano admires his earnest, straightforward roommate. What does he not understand? Kagiura is completely head over heels in love with him.
Hikaru Kusakabe is a typical adolescent who has a band, smokes, attends parties, and enjoys his youth to the fullest. Rihito Sajou, on the other hand, is his polar opposite; Rihito is an honour student who is always at the top of his class, and he received a perfect score on his high school entrance exam.
Kusakabe notices Sajou not singing during a chorus festival rehearsal and offers to help him practise. They began training every day after class. As a result, despite their polar opposite personalities, the two boys begin to grow closer and develop feelings for each other.
With the pressures of the final year of high school, students must make a decision about their future. Along the way, these two boys will have to learn about their own emotions while also supporting and growing each other.
3. Boy Meets Maria
Taiga aspires to be an actor, so the first thing he does when he enters high school is join the drama club. There, he meets the lovely, enigmatic Maria and falls head over heels in love with her.
Soon after, Taiga learns that she is actually a boy–but is that the end of Maria’s storey? The debut work of creator PEYO before their untimely death in 2020, this beautifully illustrated one-volume tale explores the layered nature of personal expression and the fluidity of the power of love.
2. Welcome Home
Hiromu Fujiyoshi knew the gentle omega Masaki was his destined mate the moment he laid eyes on him, and now that they’ve married, he refuses to let anything destroy their precious bond.
Neither a judgmental society nor interfering family members have been able to demolish the life they’ve built, and they’ve created a happy family together. Hiromu and Masaki have just moved into a new home because of the discrimination in their old neighbourhood, where they hope to provide their little son Hikari with the safe, warm environment he deserves. With the help of new and old friends, this loving family fills their days with joy and love.
1. Sasaki and Miyano
Yoshikazu Miyano is a shy high school student who enjoys reading manga about boys. One day, he finds himself in the midst of a heated school brawl, unsure of what steps to take. Before things worsen, he is interrupted by upperclassman Shuumei Sasaki, who bravely takes his place and saves Miyano from his sorrow. Miyano has quietly looked up to him since that day.
Three months later, Miyano realises that Sasaki is more annoying than admirable. He greets Miyano at school with playful teases, not to mention the frequent friendly skinship he receives. When Sasaki asks for manga recommendations, Miyano lets him borrow a boys-love comic from his collection.
Surprisingly, Sasaki ended up enjoying its content and became addicted to boys-love as well, launching a shared passion. Is it possible that it will grow into something more?
- The Summer With You