She Loves to Cook and She Loves to Eat is a yuri (WLW) manga published and localized in English by Yen Press. It’s written by mangaka Sakaomi Yuzaki, translated by Caleb David Cook and lettered by Phil Christie. Last volume, Nomoto is a home cook who gets joy from finding new recipes and exploring a skill that has meant so much to her. The only problem was that there wasn’t anyone to eat her cooking, especially since she has no interest in finding a man to make her wife—no matter how many times people say she should. Then, she met Kasuga, a dinner partner with an appetite like she’s never seen. Kasuga is just content to have a dinner partner who will happily serve her endless amounts of delicious food without batting an eye.
In She Loves to Cook and She Loves to Eat Volume 2, the two make plans to spend the holidays together. But in that planning, they both begin to question what they really are. Are they just neighbors, budding friends, or perhaps something more? Is the other also feeling that way, or are they alone? The questions bubble up like the joy they get just being in each other’s presence and it’s fantastic to watch them grow.
She Loves to Cook and She Loves to Eat Volume 2 continues to artfully navigate the way sexism impacts women’s relationships with food both when it comes to eating and cooking. It highlights the patriarchal elements of who gets eat first, who gets to eat the best parts of the meal, and how all of that actually manages to make a lasting impact on our lives. But more importantly, the navigation of how food is gendered affects Nomoto and Kasuga differently isn’t just held internally like the first volume. Nomoto and Kasuga share their burdens with each other and give each other a caring and safe space to be themselves.
While Nomoto is tired of being told she would make a good wife, Kasuga is tired of being told to eat less. Together, they help feed others’ souls as much as fill their bellies. Volume 1 was focused on the two getting to know each other from strangers to friends and She Loves to Cook and She Loves to Eat Volume 2 is focused on what comes next. As the two spend more time together, Nomoto realizes that she is starting to love Kasuga romantically. For the latter half of the volume, readers get to explore Nomoto’s life and how she came to understand her sexuality and being attracted to women. The volume features a content warning because it goes into the bigotry that Nomoto experiences and sees as she begins to identify as a lesbian.
My first worry with She Loves to Cook and She Loves to Eat was the lack of romance in the first volume. With so few yuri stories readily available, at least in comparison to BL stories which have their own imprints, I wanted more romance from the series. That said, that slow pacing has allowed the story to explore each character and make them whole in their own right before pushing them together romantically, which makes the element of romance at the end of Volume 2 have such a substantial pay-off.
She Loves to Cook and She Loves to Eat Volume 2 is a fantastic next step in the narrative, but also for Nomoto and Kasuga individually. The two women are dynamic and have their own drives and experiences that color how they interact with one another. The foundation of any romance isn’t just the chemistry between love interests, but rather what each character brings to the relationship independently.
She Loves to Cook and She Loves to Eat Volume 2 is available now wherever books are sold.
She Loves to Cook and She Loves to Eat Volume 2 is a fantastic next step in the narrative, but also for Nomoto and Kasuga individually. The two women are dynamic and have their own drives and experiences that color how they interact with one another.
Kate Sánchez is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of But Why Tho? A Geek Community. There, she coordinates film, television, anime, and manga coverage. Kate is also a freelance journalist writing features on video games, anime, and film. Her focus as a critic is championing animation and international films and television series for inclusion in awards cycles.