18th Manga Division New Face Award
Chi-chan wa chotto tarinai (Chi-chan Isn’t Quite Good Enough)
ABE Tomomi [Japan]
Grades, money, lovers, friends… Junior high school girls Chi-chan and Natsu always feel that something is missing. They both lead an ordinary life, helped in class by their friend and top-grade student ASAHI, and their class representative. But one day, when Natsu and Chichan stop by a shop on their way home, a girl belonging to a conspicuous group in class calls out,“Want to try shoplifting?” An impulsive act suddenly causes their ordinary junior high school life to become unstable. Carrying a dim feeling of unease and dissatisfaction, there are days when we sense beauty in our small existence, while on others we want to sigh. This is a portrayal of “living”, depicted in the mixture of hope and despair of the main characters.