As the God of Death Dictates Manga Review

Sixteen year old Ayumi has one month left to live.
Knowing it she finally has the courage to confess her love to long-time crush, Musashi. Now she´s in love but the grim reaper sent to take her away has other plans. He´s obsessed with this unusual girl and no human boy is going to stand in the way. Can Ayumi´s love last or will her heart be stolen away by Shiro? Will thirty days be her last chance at happiness? 

My Review (Part 1)
Grim-reaper tells Ayumi the bad news
Six months ago a good family friend was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Medically most pancreatic patients pass away in less than six months; rarely do they live a year. The horrifying idea of counting down your final thirty days is terrifying. Ayumi´s own accidental discovery of knowing you are living on limited time struck home. 

I thought this manga would merely be a girl living life
to the fullest in thirty short days. As the God of Death Dictates completely surprised me. Her story was proof no life is ever so simple. You need to have more than courage to keep an open heart and still be yourself. Ayumi is proof a person´s self can be powerful enough to change fate.

The Characters
Ayumi Maki is a love-struck sixteen year old. She is naturally open-hearted, compassionate, and feels for others. When a grim reaper tells her about the thirty days she has left, Ayumi makes a change becoming more outspoken in her affections. 

Musashi Hiroe is a classic teenage boy. He doesn´t give off the clearest of signals and struggles to understand Ayumi. Musashi is often jealous to the point of being hurtful. Genuinely caring for Ayumi he tries to ´solve´ the grim reaper problem. When his first method fails he continues to promise he will protect her from harm.

Grim Reaper (Shiro) claims to be emotionless over his job. Yet he cries over taking the soul of a cat. He becomes dangerously obsessed over Ayumi who brings out the curiousity in him for human feelings. Shiro can be extremely childish. He wants his way. When Ayumi stands up to him, Shiro is forced to consider what it means to feel for another.

The Art
Ayumi´s looks in the first chapters reminded me of a
Ayumi is awkward here
drag queen just beginning. The overly large lashes made the eyes comical and odd. Her face was awkward and her body boxy. The ´pretty´ men around her made her looks stand out for all the wrong reasons. Then something changes a bit. Ayumi gets a bit toned down. She becomes far more beautiful with far less.  

I love the light beams. The soft shading makes me happy.
The manga´s overall feel is one of a romance. I love the shading of the background. There is a softness to it. Light is such a central part of this story it seems only natural it be that way. I do wish the artist had taken a bit more time on Shiro´s clothes. He is such a pretty face but I get distracted by Near type pajamas.

My Review Part 2
I enjoyed this manga so much because it had a
Jealous Shiro threatens to kill Musashi if Ayumi doesn´t comply
storyline more than a girl living life to the fullest in thirty days. You had three very different character types locked together over one girl who first seemed so average. I liked the romance. I loved that Ayumi didn´t get locked into a freaky love triangle. She got distracted but stood strong even when her man acted like a d-bag.

My wish for this manga would be it had expanded a
Who are you grim reaper pajama boy? We want more!
bit. The was the author´s first two part manga which made me very proud to see. You really got a storyline in those two volumes which some mangas fail to do in thirty volumes. I just wished it could have given us a bit more on Shiro. He is so central and gets rushed towards the end. You find yourself wondering more about how his journey happened.

To the Reader
Romance lovers open your heart to As the God of Death Dictates. This is a manga which has love at its heart. There is a definite romance and even a love triangle at times. The manga is relatively short but what you get is a full love story. I do not know if Ayumi´s love will last a lifetime. She is only sixteen but what is happening at that moment is worth risking a read.

Where do we go when we die?
Ayumi may find out
Supernatural lovers might be surprised to find I recommend this to them as well. I have a fascination in the way mangas view death. This author´s idea is one which takes a turn from the usual view of death I see in manga.

Final Score: 7.9

Name(s): Kamisama no Iu Toori; As the God of Death Dictates; Как велит Бог Смерти; 神様の言うとおり; 神的预言好准
Author(s): Mimori Ao
Artist(s): Mimori Ao
Year: 2002
Genre: Romance, Drama, Supernatural, School Life
Chapters: 8
Status: Complete
Anime: No