Harukana Receive is a beach volleyball manga written and illustrated by Nyoijizai, which began serialisation in Houbunsha’s Manga Time Kirara Forward‘s October 2015 issue. Seven Seas has licensed the manga for an English release. An anime adaptation by C2C premiered on July 6th, 2018.
The first volume of Harukana Receive contains chapters one through to six, as well as an extra chapter.
When high schooler Haruka moves to Okinawa, she falls in love with the beach that opens up right outside her front door. She resolves to form a beach volleyball team with her cousin Kanata – but Kanata’s a little on the short side, and gave up on the sport a long time ago. Can Haruka convince Kanata to take it up again in time for the junior tournament?
This first volume of Harukana Receive covers Haruka’s arrival in Okinawa, the first beach volleyball match against Narumi and Ayasa, and finally meeting the Éclair sisters.
Let’s start by going over each of the characters. First up, Haruka Ozora. She has a height complex, which isn’t something that the anime doesn’t really touch upon. She dislikes her body type, and she is able to sympathise with Kanata thanks to that.
On the flipside, Kanata Higa dislikes being short. That was the very thing that ended up driving her away from beach volleyball in the first place, but things start to change as Haruka encourages her and offers support.
Haruka and Kanata – or just ‘Harukana’ from hereon out – have quite a difficult first match of beach volleyball, as their opponents are Ayasa Tachibana and Narumi Toi. Narumi is Kanata’s ex-partner – though the way Ayasa talks about them makes it seem more like ex-girlfriend.
Narumi takes beach volleyball very seriously, and comes off as somewhat harsh due to it. However, there is a very specific reason for doing so, which is revealed during the second match Harukana plays against her and Ayasa.
Also worth noting, Ayasa was the one who decided Narumi should wear her swimsuit the way she does – Ayasa has a ‘if you’ve got it, flaunt it’ policy – Ayasa has her breasts, whilst Narumi ‘nice guns and a tight butt’.
Finally, the last pair of characters introduced in this volume are sisters Emily and Claire. Claire is something of a free spirit, whilst Emily is her opposite. Despite their differences, it is clear to see that they make for a very good team – though even they are prone to the occasional mistake.
That’s the character, now lets focus on the beach volleyball. As Haruka is totally new to the sport, she has to have some of the rules explained to her – and of course, this also allows the audience to become more familiar with how beach volleyball goes as well.
The matches are fun to read, even though Harukana’s opponents outclass them in this first volume. Still, that doesn’t deter Haruka – she even says that she is having fun.
Some sports stories might use a lot of drama progress their plot, but there is a draw to seeing characters actually having fun playing whatever sport.
Harukana Receive is one of those, where seeing the characters enjoy themselves makes for a much more enjoyable read.
With an entirely female cast, you might expect some yuri here or there – and Harukana Receive already delivers with its first volume. Beach volleyball partners are compared to girlfriends at one point, for example.
That stuff mostly comes from Haruka and Kanata in this volume. When helping Haruka to adjust her swimsuit, Kanata can’t help but admire Haruka’s butt and call it both cute and sexy.
Then you have Haruka’s reaction to seeing Kanata in her swimsuit for the second match against Narumi and Ayasa. Haruka finds Kanata so cute that she just wants to eat her up, and she says that Kanata is her ideal girl. Had Ayasa not interrupted, Haruka might have ended up keeping that up for quite a while.
The first volume of Harukana Receive is a very enjoyable read. The characters are all fun, and the beach volleyball matches are good as well.