Lightning Review

Yakuza Fiancé, Vol 1. by Asuka Konishi


Yakuza Fiancé, Vol. 1

by Asuka Konishi

CW: Blood and violence, organ trafficking, forced prostitution, sexual harassment

I forgot where I heard about Yakuza Fiancé initially, but that cover was a strong motivator. Yoshino, the granddaughter of a crime boss in Osaka, and Kirishima, the grandson of a Yakuza boss in Tokyo are instructed to date (and possibly marry) to strengthen an alliance between the two families.

Yoshino is a bit of a fish out of water, leaving Osaka to live in Tokyo with the Miyama family. She transfers to Kirishima’s school and is honestly surprised by his gentle, easy-going demeanor. Surprise, it’s all a ruse!

Kirishima wants a woman that will “ruin his life” and treat him as “subhuman.” You can imagine my surprise when things took that particular turn. He admits to Yoshino that she’s too normal and if she wants to be of any use to the Miyama family, she should join one of their brothels. Yoshino is understandably taken aback and calls her grandfather, who suggests that she stick it out for a year, making Kirishima fall in love with her, and then crush his heart.

I liked seeing Yoshino build confidence and eventually stand up to Kirishima

TW body horror

(though she sells a kidney and gives Kirishima the money in a fit of rage? I didn’t quite fully understand that).

The art style is a little too angular for my taste and it strangely had a lot of British words and slang like “knackered” and “bollocks.”

I’m on the fence about continuing this one: I looked ahead at the future volumes and

Show Spoiler
there are some mentions of cheating and a love triangle.

People also mention that the plot and romance get more convoluted and fucked up, which may or may not work for me. Going to noodle on this one, friends! In the meantime, happy to take suggestions for more adult romance manga suggestions!


Yoshino grew up the sheltered yakuza princess of the largest crime family in Osaka, the Somei. Due to her resting bitch face and dangerous family, no man has ever approached her. When her grandfather signs a truce with the Tokyo-based Miyama crime family, he offers her up as a truce bride to the Miyama leader’s grandson! Kirishima Miyama is popular, charming, and seems totally normal.

But behind his smile is a violent sadomasochist who thirsts for her dominance even more when she impresses him with her moxie! Even though she knows how bad yakuza can be, she’s stunned by Miyama’s viciousness. She can’t turn him down with the East-West peace treaty on the line…so instead she steels herself to play ball!

Contemporary Romance, Manga, Mystery/Thriller, Romance
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  1. Beverly says:

    I can’t decide if I want to continue with this one or not either. It seems like people really love how Unhinged it is. The kidney move was odd to me too. Like it could of been used in a way to show how determined or strong willed the heroine is if their was more of a purpose behind it.

  2. Marfisa says:

    I think the point was supposed to be that the psycho fiance suggested that she was good-looking enough that she could earn a specific sum of money (I think it was 250 thousand yen, or something like that) in a short period of time via prostitution. So instead she sold her kidney to make the same amount, then threw the money in his face as a sort of act of malicious compliance (since he’d advised her to “sell her body”) to prove that she wasn’t just the boringly normal girl that she’d been pretending to be in an attempt to make a good impression in Tokyo (mostly at school). Of course, this made him fall for her all over again. (He’d originally been in favor of the “arranged fiance” scheme based on her resting bitch face in the photos he’d seen of her, and was disappointed when she acted relatively predictable and ordinary in real life.)

    I don’t think Yoshino’s selling her kidney to make a point was worth it either, especially since it was mentioned in passing that this could cause medical complications for the rest of her life. Instead of merely demonstrating that Yoshino was a force to be reckoned with–and therefore not treated like some sort of disposable commodity–it just made him so fixated on her that now she probably won’t ever be able to get free of him without one or both of them ending up dead. Now that she’s discovered how warped Kirishima actually is, her grandfather’s idea that Yoshino should make Kirishima fall in love with her, then dump him at the end of the prescribed year, seems likely to end in extreme bloodshed. But she’s already inadvertently accomplished the “making him fall in love” part by means of the kidney stunt, so it’s almost certainly too late to safely undo his obsession now.

    Yoshino might have been better off complaining to her grandfather–or possibly Kirishima’s own grandfather–about Kirishima’s “make us some money as a prostitute” comment (which seems flagrantly contrary to both the “fake fiance” agreement and the idiosyncratic code of honor most traditional yakuza claim to observe), in the hope of either nullifying the engagement or at least having Kirishima’s grandfather order him to treat her more respectfully. Of course, Kirishima is such a loose cannon that doing that might well have resulted in his attempting to stab her for snitching, or some other horrible outcome. And, of course, Yoshino was undoubtedly afraid that exposing his horrendous behavior would touch off the exact sort of gang war that the arranged engagement was intended to prevent–with her literally stuck in the middle of the enemy camp, on top of the potential danger to her grandfather and the Osaka gang members she’d grown up with.

  3. Amanda says:

    @Marfisa: Thank you for helping me make sense of that detail! I definitely didn’t follow.

  4. toboannda says:

    None of this should have made me want to read this manga but I checked it out out of a kind of morbid curiosity and couldn’t stop reading. I’m not going to lie, it’s not going to be everyone’s vibe – Kirishima sleeps with 2 other women on page (and it’s implied that there are more) and really likes the idea that Yoshino might go out with another guy, all while claiming to be in love with Yoshino. For her part, Yoshino is fully aware of all this but doesn’t really care? I think she’s dealt with so much nonsense from Kirishima that she’s basically immune. And as a long time hater of love triangles and cheating and all that drama, I should absolutely hate this, but somehow, if it’s these two, I’m really into it. Dunno, sometimes in life you just want something a bit messed up and shocking, and this fills that void perfectly.

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