In the world of manga, LGBTQ works are classified as being either yuri (which is a term for lesbian-related content) or yaoi (a term for gay-related content). Now, while not everyone likes these genres, we have to state that some of the most beautiful love stories have been written on the pages of such manga. In this article, we are going to bring you a list of the 10 best LGBTQ (yuri and yaoi) manga you need to read.
1. Kashimashi ~Girl Meets Girl~
Original Run: July 2004 – May 2007
Number of Volumes: 5
Hazumu is a young teenager in love. The chosen one of his heart is Yasuna, with whom he has recently befriended. Alas, he gets rejected. Collapsed, he decides to slip away to a mountain to forget, when an alien ship in distress hits him and kills him.
To apologize, the aliens recreate him with all his memories, but change him, a priori for no reason, into a girl and announce him to the world. He must then get used to his new life and reappropriate his friends and loves, who see their perception more or less changed by this modification.
In addition, he must undergo the surveillance of the two aliens, who see it as a good opportunity to understand humanity.
2. Junjo Romantica: Pure Romance
Original Run: April 30, 2002 – present
Number of Volumes: 26
The story begins with the school results of the young Misaki Takahashi which are quite poor. The latter dreams of entering Mitsuhashi, a renowned university. That’s why his big brother, Takahiro, sends him to his friend, the famous writer Akihiko Usami, to serve as his tutor.
Misaki then discovers that Akihiko has secretly loved his brother for years and writes, in addition to his award-winning bestsellers, sulfurous Boy’s Love novels whose main characters are none other than Usami himself and Misaki’s brother. At first scandalized and angry, Misaki will gradually get to know his tutor better.
It was then that on Takahiro’s birthday, the latter announced his marriage to Manami Kajiwara, his fiancée. Misaki then goes into a deep anger towards her brother, feeling bad for the heartbroken Usami. Misaki then cries for Akihiko seeing right in her heart. Usami, touched by Misaki’s sensitivity, sees his love change.
3. Bloom Into You
Original Run: April 27, 2015 – September 27, 2019
Number of Volumes: 8
Yū Koito has always loved shōjo manga, and must therefore know the feelings she should feel when she receives a confession of love. However, when a student in her middle school confesses his feelings for her, Yū feels nothing. She postpones her answer until later and ends up entering high school, still unsure of her answer.
She then sees the president of the student council, Tōko Nanami, elegantly rejecting a confession of love. Yū decides to seek her advice and then finds out that Nanami never accepted a confession because neither of them made her feel anything in particular.
The two girls are united in their similarities but eventually, Nanami realizes that she might fall in love with Yū and then declares her feelings to her.
4. Crimson Spell
Original Run: 2004 – 2021
Number of Volumes: 6
The kingdom of Alsviez is under attack from demons and to save it, Prince Valdrigue uses the sealed sword Yug Verund. He manages to avert the threat. But with the loosening of the seal, there is now a curse on Valdrigue, who now turns himself into a monster at night. So he travels to the magician Halvir Froput to have him lift the curse.
But Halvir wants the sword for his service. The prince refuses because it has been in the family for a long time. So Valdrigue must embark on a journey to the sorcerer Haldaim’s dragon in order to destroy the source of the curse. On the journey, the prince is accompanied by Halvir to keep the monster in check. Halvir secretly wants to steal the sword.
But it turns out that the only way to appease Valdrigue’s monster form is through sex. Halvir can refresh his powers at the same time. The next morning, the prince can’t remember anything that happened in his monster form. So the magician always sleeps with the monster at night, uses its powers and takes a liking to it.
5. Adachi and Shimamura
Original Run: October 2012 (serialization) / March 2013 (publication) – present
Number of Volumes: 10
In the middle of the school day, Shimamura decides to skip school. Going upstairs to the gymnasium in search of some peace and quiet, she meets a young girl named Adachi, who has also come to skip school.
Very quickly, the two comrades become friends, leading them to frequently go there to play improvised games of table tennis. But as the time spent together increases, in the gym or elsewhere, Adachi is no longer certain that what she feels for Shimamura is just simple friendship.
6. No Touching At All
Original Run: 2007 – 2013
Number of Volumes: 2
Shima is hired into a new company. Her first meeting with his superior is disastrous: he appears to him after a night of revelry, still prey to the fumes of alcohol. Initially intolerant of Togawa’s coarse, friendly and sometimes intrusive ways, Shima tries in every way to avoid him, while the boy’s past and his introverted character make him in fact a stranger to all colleagues.
Yet slowly the young man ends up falling in love with his superior and when the latter invites him to dinner he does not shy away from his kisses, the fruit of the passion that bursts between them. The two end up in bed and, although Togawa has always considered himself heterosexual until then, they continue to see each other as two sexfriends.
Shima, despite desiring to have a stable relationship with the man he loves, is aware of his past of abandonment and bereavement and that he himself does not hide from him that he ardently wants the family he never had, on the other hand Shima himself does not he manages to overcome the attachment to the man who abandoned him and subjected him to the ostracism of his colleagues in the company he previously worked for.
Even when gestures and attentions reveal how much Togawa loves his partner, Shima can never completely trust him, often repeating to himself that a heterosexual could never love him without abandoning him. When Togawa is then informed that he has been requested from the Kyoto division, obtaining a promotion, he decides to leave, sacrificing his precarious and tormented relationship with Shima to work commitments.
However, the young man is the first to leave his lover and even when he is informed of her transfer, he prefers to be self-satisfied with his condition, a victim of pain. Even the attentions of Onoda, Togawa’s friend and Shima’s new superior, are hardly considered by the boy.
When Togawa receives the first and unexpected call from Shima since he resides in Kyoto, he is overwhelmed by the apology of that; then, thanks to an intuition, he reaches the chilled young man who is under his house. Now reunited and reconciled, the two get back together, determined to see each other love each other despite the distances.
Original Run: November 17, 2012 – August 18, 2018
Number of Volumes: 10
Yuzu is a young kogaru who, following the remarriage of her mother, must move and integrate a new high school for young girls who are extremely strict, especially with regard to the appearance of the students. From her first day of school, she comes into conflict with the student office, especially its president, Mei Aihara, a particularly cold, severe, and strict student whom she comes to hate.
That same evening at home, Yuzu discovers that she has a new half-sister with whom she will have to share her room; this is none other than Mei. Will Yuzu succeed in learning to live with a person she hates? But Yuzu will also discover one thing: hatred and love share an extremely blurred border.
8. Ten Count
Original Run: July 13, 2013 – November 14, 2017
Number of Volumes: 6
The secretary Tadaomi Shirotani suffers from mysophobia, the fear of dirt and contamination. In his job, he can avoid the contacts he detests, also because his boss, Mr. Kuramoto, is considerate of him. But when he has an accident one day, Shirotani blames himself for being afraid. The therapist Riku Kurose helps with the accident and immediately recognizes Shirotani’s illness.
He advises him to get medical treatment. When Shirotani can finally bring himself to do so, he ends up with Kurose as a therapist. He even offers to help him for free and as a friend.
Shirotani makes a list of ten activities that disgust him in ascending order; starting with using the doorknob without gloves. But Shirotani leaves tenth place empty. Once he fills this out, Kurose wants to tell him why he wants to help him for free. While working on the list, Shirotani slowly builds trust in Kurose and often finds it easier to complete the tasks in his presence.
9. Strawberry Panic!
Original Run: December 30, 2003 – July 30, 2005
Number of Volumes: 18
The plot of Strawberry Panic centers on the lives of some teenage girls who attend the same school conglomerate made up of the three prestigious schools of St. Miator, St. Spica and St. Lulim. All three schools are characterized by the fact that they have arisen very close to each other and that they share different structures at a sacred place away from worldly life where men cannot enter.
Among these structures, the most important is undoubtedly the Ichigo Dormitory, with its characteristic strawberry shape. The real protagonist of the story is Nagisa Aoi, a young girl who finds herself attending St. Miator following a transfer.
10. The Titan’s Bride
Original Run: March 28, 2019 – present
Number of Volumes: 2
Kouichi Mizuki has just graduated from high school and can’t wait for the future to come, but after his last day of school he finds himself summoned to Eustil, a world of titans! His summoner, Prince Caius, has taken him to the realm of Tildant to become his bride and fulfill a prophecy, but their considerable size difference makes Kouichi worry that he can’t be with her huge new “husband”.
Caius agrees to send Kouichi home after a month if he is really unhappy; yet as time goes by, Kouichi finds himself getting used to being a “dwarf” in a land of giants. And despite his protests, he will begin to have feelings towards the prince.