Sweet Admiration is the story of Katsuya, a country boy who moves to Tokyo for work. The first thing Katsuya does is plan to meet with a childhood friend, Kazuki, in hopes of finding a place to stay while he awaits his company's housing development. However, things don't work out as planned; that is, until things suddenly take a turn in his favour when his new boss places him with a roommate in the "company dorms", with someone Katsuya has had on his mind since childhood: Kazuki's older brother, Shio.
With a believably fresh start, Katsuya and Shio's new living arrangement doesn't work out that well at first. Shio remembers Katsuya, but not nearly as memorably as Katsuya remembers him. Shio is understandably annoyed with the fact he was suddenly placed with a roommate. Not enjoying the cold state between them, Katsuya kindly and ignorantly ignores Shio's requests to leave him alone and keeps giving happy hellos and fresh-cooked meals each and everyday.
I enjoyed the pacing of Sweet Admiration, which though it does have a tone that's clearly suggestive of its boys' love nature, it never felt too overeager to get to the romantic coupling. Readers follow Katsuya and Shio's steadily evolving relationship over the span of a few months, which includes short tours around the city, and an emotionally clingy stepbrother who seeks to step between them.
Being a light novel, there's obviously a lot more translation work involved for the staffers at Digital Manga Publishing (June) than with a one-shot manga book. Overall I didn't have any problems reading through this translation re-write of Sweet Admiration. The wording was simple and easy to understand and I didn't come across any glaring spelling or grammar issues. The only thing that got me was the moment near the end when a sex scene started up. The simple writing style, reading very similar to teen books, felt a little awkward when suddenly describing such intimate details.
While I didn't think much of the cover illustration, I did like the black and white interior illustrations (all by Midori Shena). They were good representations of the scenes they were portraying and gave readers nicely drawn faces to put to the names.
All in all, Sweet Admiration was a nice read. It's easy to get through, has some sweet moments, and though nothing too spectacular as a whole, manages to have its own charm. I recommend this to first time light novel readers looking for some boys' love as I think it makes for a good branch between manga and novel.