Much like its sister games, Amakute Hoshikute Torokeru Chuu, the seventh visual novel in the Sono Hanabira ni Kuchizuke wo (A Kiss for the Petals) series, focuses on the cute fluffy yuri relationship of two girls. However, unlike its prequels, Hoshikute Chuu really highlights the edginess of forbidden relationships.  Before I delve further into this. I want to make this clear. This review will approach the visual novel as an artistic and literary work. 
Hoshikute Chuu opens with an adorable scene. Takako, a teacher at St. Michael’s Girls Academy, attempts to wake up her lover, who is also her student, but is instead manipulated, seduced, and bullied into performing sexual favors. The first chapter sets up the fascinating dynamic between this unlikely couple, and introduces their stark, cleverly written personalities, which are then explored in this irresistible story.
The two lead characters add a lot of brilliance to Hoshikute Chuu. Takako, through whose lens we see events, is an inexperienced school teacher. Although she aspires to be the kind of teacher students admire, she just does not have the authoritative personality to be of any impact. On the other hand, Runa, a student in Takako’s class, is extremely beautiful, smart, and charismatic. She is all that Takako hopes to, but can never, be. In addition, the script does an incredible job of adding even more subtlety to these broadly-painted personalities. For example, Runa has moments of weaknesses when she lets down her guard or shows her naïveté, at which point Takako would reveal her protective warmth or her devious side.
Moreover, because Runa and Takako’s characters develop alongside their relationship, their personalities and romance are very compelling. When Runa transfers to Takako’s class, her overpowering strong presence immediately captures the attention of not only Takako, but the entire class. Takako is faced with an inner dilemma. She is both in awe of Runa and jealous of her commanding power.
The two girls’ first meeting outlines this interaction. On her first day at St. Michael’s, Runa forces herself on Takako and publicly claims the teacher as her own. Takako could do nothing to deny Runa’s words nor convince the other students, who all blindly worship Runa, otherwise. But even she is unsure if she wants to deny it. As Runa slowly strips Takako of her dignity as a teacher, tension grows within the teacher until it explodes. The two’s relationship and characters are deepened when they finally overcome this.
Of course, these two polar personalities also lend easily to sadomasochistic undertones in the erotic scenes. Runa has a clear sadistic streak, whereas Takako is a hopeless submissive, who arouses Runa’s deepest desires to train the teacher. It is especially interesting to see Runa dominate, bully, and often humiliate Takako, who is supposed to be the more powerful figure.
This reversal of power has important implications. Hoshikute Chuu is, at its core, a story about a forbidden relationship. Takako struggles with her conflicting roles as Runa’s teacher, guardian, and lover, but she does eventually reconcile them. Yet, though it explores extensively on the teacher-student dynamic, the visual novel barely touches on the arguably more controversial aspect of their relationship: Runa’s age.  Perhaps what makes the loli factor more tolerable is because Runa is the one holding most of the power in the romantic relationship. As such, there is no hint of exploitation by the older Takako, nor does this visual novel remind of abuse. In fact, Takako is quite a prude, and Runa does all the seduction. Nevertheless, there are a few lines that give me pause, especially those that flaunt Runa’s loli appearance.
Still, I really enjoyed Hoshikute Chuu. Regardless of the controversial loli element,  the story is wonderfully conceived and paced, the personalities pop, and every interaction is meaningful. For instance, I love the interwoven subplot revolving around Runa’s sister, a impressionable character who, despite having no lines, holds a cataclysmic role. This is truly a testament to how beautiful the script is and how strong the personalities are.  The seventh volume, Amakute Hoshikute Torokeru Chuu, is perhaps my favorite visual novel in this series. 
- The forbidden love refers mostly to the teacher-student relationship, which is very frowned upon, as well as the big age difference between the two girls.
- The reason for and importance of this disclaimer should be be pretty obvious.
- Runa’s age is actually not explicitly stated, but her grade is. Take that how ever.
- I actually do not mind much Runa’s young age in the context of this visual novel…
- One of my favorite scenes, and a good example of the charming lines, is when Runa talks to other student about the possibility of Takako cheating on her. Runa’s surprising attitude on the issue really illustrates her queen-like demeanor (or rather, sadistic harem leader potential).
- There might be a bit of recency bias, but I really loved reading through the story.
- For a further look at Runa and Takako’s relationship, some interpretations of their characters, and a few snippets of the story, this comment thread addresses a lot of those. Also, feel free to check out its sequel.
- Peko’s CGs are, as always, gorgeous. The style differs a bit from the earlier works in that the characters, including Takako, generally have a more loli appearance.
- Like its various prequels, there is a urinary incontinence scene, which I secretly find somewhat charming in an odd way… Although not as extreme as Yuuna’s cases, it does make me blush.
- Some past release information on Amakute Hoshikute Torokeru Chuu:
Amakute Hoshikute Torokeru Chuu – Sono Hanabira 7 Release Date
Hanabira 7 and 8 Announced: Takako and Runa Web Series Released as Visual Novel
- You can find all the Sono Hanabira games here.
The English patch has been released for this game as well, much thanks to AXYPB, here.
I realize the subject of this post is more suited for a mature audience. If you are not comfortable with this, I apologize sincerely. You might want to check out my other safer posts (basically any posts not about Sono Hanabira).
Reviews for the other Hanabira
- A Kiss for the Petals | Sono Hanabira ni Kuchizuke wo
- A Kiss for the Petals – My Dear Prince | Watashi no Ouji-sama
- A Kiss for the Petals – Joined in Love with You | Anata to Koibito Tsunagi
- A Kiss for the Petals – Beloved Photograph | Aishisa no Photograph
- A Kiss for the Petals – The Joy of Loving You | Anata wo Suki na Shiawase
- A Kiss for the Petals – Whisper with Lips and Kisses | Kuchibiru to Kiss de Tsubuyaite
- A Kiss for the Petals – Sweet Enchanting Kiss | Amakute Hoshikute Torokeru Chuu
- A Kiss for the Petals – Petal-Colored Angel | Tenshi no Hanabira Zome
- Amakute Otona no Torokeru Chuu
More information on the Sono Hanabira ni Kuchizuke wo series