If you love reading and Korean culture then you probably have heard of or read some manhwa yourself. Manhwa is the Korean version of manga, which is Japanese comics or graphic novels, and focuses on Korean concepts and culture. Being able to see images while reading the story adds another element you don’t get with traditional novels! Let’s jump into five romance manhwa series you should add to your reading list.
- Kill Me, Kiss Me (K2 - 게 어 투)
K-2 was created by Lee Young Yuu and originally published by the Korean publisher Daewon C.I. It then was published in English by Tokyopop, and was renamed Kill Me, Kiss Me. This manhwa is about two identical cousins, Taeyeon and Jung-woo. Taeyeon is a tomboy who has a crush on a male model named Kun. Jung-woo is an unbothered, easygoing boy, who happens to be in the same class as Kun. Taeyeon devises a plan for the two of them to switch places for a week, so she can win the heart of Kun. Will Taeyeon win the heart of Kun or will she be found out before then? This five-volume manhwa explores the antics of two cousins who may look identical, but have two completely different personalities. A good read for anyone who likes a romantic comedy with a twist or two.
- Model (모델)
Model was created by Lee So Young, published by Daewon C.I., and then released in English by Tokyopop. This series is about a woman named Jae, who is an art student studying in Europe. Jae is determined to become one of the best artists and refuses to quit, no matter what. One night, her friend returns home with a drunk man and she reluctantly lets him stay. This event changes Jae’s life as the man, Michael, turns out to be a vampire with unspeakable beauty. Jae wishes to paint Michael’s portrait and her desire to do so puts her in a sticky situation with a blood-thirsty vampire. Will Jae fall for Michael’s beauty and charm, making her a new victim? Will she be able to finish her painting and become a great artist as she hopes? This seven-volume manga is full of suspense and mystery as Jae discovers information about Michael. An interesting read for romance and supernatural fans.
- Snow Drop (스노우 드롭)
Snow Drop was created by Choi Kyung-ah, published by Daewon C.I., then published in English by Tokyopop, and is one of the most popular sujeong (shogo title) in Korea. Concerned about his daughter after the death of her mother, So-na’s father enrolls her into a new high school, where she meets Hae-gi, and the two become inseparable. It seems like a happy ending for the couple, but what happens when their families disapprove and secrets from the past start to stir up, causing conflict. Will So-na and Hae-gi be able to conquer the hurdles thrown in their way or will they break apart? This is a twelve-volume series that follows the story of two young people who have experienced traumatic events and are able to enjoy life when they are together, but the events from the past threaten to break them apart, along with their families.
- My Loveable Fatty / Fatty That I Love (내게 너무 사랑스러운 뚱땡이)
My Loveable Fatty was created by Lee Hee Yeong and follows Dong San, a short chubby girl who comes back to Korea after living in America for years. After she was rejected by the boy she likes in front of all her classmates, she goes into the woods to take her own life. Luckily, the attempt fails, and she stumbles upon a bag full of medicine. It is no ordinary medicine, each one changes a characteristic of someone, the most powerful one can change you into your ideal look. Dong San believes she hit the jackpot, but learns some things are too good to be true. Will Dong San be happy with the new life she has been given? This is a five-volume series that is a good read for someone who loves romantic-comedy. Dong San finds herself in many crazy situations that are made for a good laugh and follows her journey on the many forms of love.
- Taming Through Kisses / Become Habituated with a Kiss, (키스로 길들여지다)
Taming Through Kisses was created by Hwang Mi Ri and revolves around a girl named Dayeon, who happens to be the gang leader at her school. One night when she is looking around town for her father, she runs into a group beating up another boy, and after scaring them off she takes the unconscious victim back to her place. However, once he wakes he thanks her with a kiss? But that’s not where the fun really starts! When a new transfer student named Oh Yuk arrives and turns out to be the boy that delivered Dayeon’s thank you kiss, things become exciting. Will Oh Yuk be able to tame the wild, tough Dayeon or will he be beaten by the gang leader? This is a fifteen-volume series is a comedic love story about a tough girl and the boys who are entranced by her strength and beauty.
These five series share the similarity of romance, but each one has a unique plot that is different from the other, and offers a good read for any romance reader. They are recommended for any manhwa must-read list!
Written by Ashton Carson