In this screwball romantic comedy, Haruhi, a poor girl at a rich kids' school, is forced to repay an $80,000 debt by working for the school's swankiest, all-male club--as a boy! There, she discovers just how wealthy the six members are and how different the rich are from everybody else....
Haruhi's top ranking falls and she is in jeopardy of losing her scholarship at Ouran. Each member of the Host Club scrambles to become her tutor, but Haruhi picks a female student, Ayame, to help her. Haruhi's time is now spent with Ayame, who can't stand Tamaki. Can Tamaki charm his way into Ayame's good graces so the Host Club can spend time with their favorite member?
Hurray! In this volume, I finally got some backup for my Haruhi/Hikaru shipping. He freaks out after meeting an old friend of hers, because he is new to this having-a-friend-other-than-my-twin thing, and he's insecure about his role in Haruhi's life. What else to do but have Kaoru set them up on a date? NOTHING ELSE WILL DO. Even though they go out of the way to make sure the readers know this is not romantic (why oh why is Tamaki the hero? I don't want him to end up with Haruhi) I will just imagine whatever I please.
The same story actually helped me realize why I like Hikaru so much more than Tamaki. Throughought the date, Hikaru and Haruhi are rude and awkward. Tamaki stalks them with the rest of the club, and he laments, "What kind of date is this? There's no trace of chivalry here!" And that, Tamaki, is why you suck. He sets up these extravagant experiences and tells girls exactly what they want to hear. But it's all an act. He isn't himself, and he leads girls to believe something that isn't true.
Hikaru, on the other hand, is painfully honest. When he's annoyed, everyone knows it. When he cares for someone, he shows it honestly, without flair. That's the kind of romance I can get behind. For that three-part arc alone, I've giving volume 5:
Five out of five almost shared ice cream cones.
Release Date: March 2006
Reading Level: Grade 7+
Where In Dunlap Public Library's Collection: Not currently part of Dunlap Library's collection.