by Fumi Yoshinaga
Published in the U.S. by Blu
Slugline: Poverty-stricken aristocrat boy becomes a servant of a gay bourgeois in pre-Revolution France. Caution: explicit gay porn.
Someone needs to mention to Asian writers that selling one's children has never been an acceptable way to pay debts in Europe. Maybe you'd send them away as apprentices, or let them take indentured servitude to pay for a boat ride to the Colonies -- and both of those may be a lot like slavery -- but in theory they'd get an education out of it and finish their service with a clean slate.
In any case, this is an okay yaoi romance of the we'll-fight-till-we're-crazy-about-each-other variety. These aren't my favorite -- I'm the sort who dislikes the people I fight with -- but it's a well established romance genre.
Gerard is, of course, well-read in Enlightenment philosophers under his gruff persona and has been burned by women in the past. Jacques rings a bit truer in personality to me: a sheltered kid thrown out in the real world, but he's making an honest effort to learn and adapt. Everyone else is a one-trick pony.
There is not actually very much porn in this volume, to the point that what scenes there are feel gratuitous. I'm sure this will change in further volumes.