Shounen ai is the genre for boys love manga and webtoons. It’s different from yaoi because it’s suitable for people under 18 (meaning there’s no sex involved). These are my top 3 shounen ai series.
These are very sweet and cute series. There’s no rape involved at all. I say this because a lot of yaoi series have rape scenes, which is unfortunate. Not only that, but a lot of BL series have poor representation of LGBTQ+. I am referring to older series, so I’m hoping that with time there will be better representation and CONSENT! I’m not saying that those series should not exist because I’m not one to police what people should or shouldn’t read – it would be a good change for sure though.
1. Here U Are – Ongoing, by Chinese author DJun
Most people think that LiHuan is scary-looking because he is very tall, which is why he does not have many friends. He’s also not very sociable. YuYang enters his life because his job is to welcome the new university students and the two get along quite well.
The art is phenomenal. Every panel is in colour and the way the author DRAWS. FACIAL. EXPRESSIONS. aaaaaaaaa
Every panel is carefully planned. I am a fairly quick reader so I usually zoom through comics but when I read this, I have to slow down to absorb all the details. The faint blush, the way LiHuan looks at YuYang!!
LiHuan treats YuYang extremely well. The pacing is quite slow, but it’s worth the wait.
2. Cherry Blossoms After Winter – Ongoing webtoon, by Korean author Bamwoo
Haebom’s parents passed away when he was very little, and he’s been living in his mother’s friend’s house. Taesung is his age and they live under the same roof. Haebom is shy and often gets picked on by others. Taesung, on the other hand, is very popular at school.
I read this before I watched My Hero Academia, but I have to say this. Haebom is so similar to Izuku and Taesung is so similar to Todoroki. If you ship Izuku with Todoroki, then you will like this series!
I like this series because Taesung never bullies Haebom. In fact, he treats him very well and protects him too.
3. Hidamari ga Kikoeru – Ongoing manga, by FUMINO Yuki
Taichi is a college student looking for work, and he meets Kouhei, a student with a severe hearing disability. Despite rumours, Taichi believes that Kouhei is a good person for sharing his lunch, and befriends him. Taichi becomes a note taker for Kouhei, in exchange for bento lunch.
This is one of the more realistic manga I’ve read, which is rare to come across. They become very good friends and their relationship is so pure. There are some sad moments, which adds onto the realistic element of living with a disability.
If you are interested in more shonen ai series, here are more cute ones:
- Dress Him Up (Korean webtoon)
- Fools (Korean webtoon)
- Meeting Him (Korean webtoon)