Hanasakeru Seishōnen (花咲ける青少年?) is a manga series written and illustrated by Natsumi Itsuki. Set in the modern era, the story follows the path to romance of fourteen-year-old Kajika Burnsworth, daughter of powerful industrialist Harry Burnsworth, owner of the Burnsworth international conglomerate giant. Kajika agrees to participate in a "marriage game" with her father, in which she must select her future husband out of three men that her father has supposedly preselected for her.
Despite its shoujo-romance undertones, the story itself evolves as a power political mystery involving a small, middle eastern country called Raginei. Raginei as a country is only 1,000 years old, but became extremely wealthy within the last 50 years or so due to a change in ideals implemented by past King Machaty that allowed the international export of oil. While Kajika searches for her suitors and puzzles over the concept of love, the country is thrown into political turmoil and Kajika's friendship with Prince Rumaty Ivan, as well as the Burnsworth relationship with Raginei, lands her right in the middle of it all.
Fourteen-year-old Kajika Burnsworth, daughter of powerful industrialist Harry Burnsworth, has spent the first part of her life living on an island in the Caribbean with a Snow Leaopard named Mustafa. She is finally sent off to school in Japan, but is called away to her father's home in New York very soon after.
While there, Kajika gets talked into the "marriage game" by her father. In this game, she has to meet and choose a possible future husband out of three males that her father has supposedly handpicked. He does not, however, tell her details regarding their identities and leaves it to Kajika to discover the bachelors on her own. According to the rules, if she picks one of the three men, Harry will tell Kajika her true destiny. Her childhood friend, Lee-Leng Fang, is charged with helping her on her mission while protecting her as her guardian. As leader of the powerful Fang family, Lee-Leng is most qualified for the task, though whether Lee-Leng is comfortable with helping Kajika find a husband remains to be seen.
She first meets Eugene Alexandr De Volkan, a beautiful man whom she calls Mustafa because of his uncanny resemblance to the now dead Snow Leaopard she once loved. Second is Prince Rumaty Ivan of Raginei, though Kajika takes a while to decide whether Rumaty is, in fact, one of the men her father selected for her. The third bachelor Kajika meets is Carl Rosenthal of the Rosenthal family and corporation, a Burnsworth competitor. Carl's father hates Harry Burnsworth, to the point where he becomes obsessed with discrediting him. Carl, on the other hand, finds room to be more forgiving, especially with the developing friendship between himself and the gentle, understanding Kajika Burnsworth. All three men are unique in their own ways and Kajika ends up liking each of them very much. As such, she does her best to make all of them a part of her life.
Meanwhile, nearly a year after meeting Prince Rumaty, his country plummets into political turmoil and the King dies. Prince Rumaty is blamed for the King's death, despite his presence in another country during the event and he is banned from returning Raginei under the threat of death. Harry Burnsworth shelters Rumaty, leaving him in the care of Lee-Leng, who becomes somewhat of a tutor of diplomacy to him. The Prince grows up during his two years at the Burnsworth estate and eventually makes his move to re-enter the country and bring things back under control.
Kajika, Lee-Leng, Eugene, and Carl Rosenthal get caught up in the country's troubles and all four of them are trapped within its borders when chaos breaks out. Lee-Leng is injured during a coup d'tat battle at the airport and he and Kajika are both sheltered by a Rumaty-supporting faction lead by Isaac Noei, once a high-ranking officer in the Royal guard. No one is safe from danger. Officials are murdered, elite families are arrested, priests are framed, and even Noei's hideout is raided.
Two pivotal events occur in Raginei that bring the story to climax. It is during the events in Raginei that Kajika realizes which man she loves most. Also, by the time Prince Rumaty reaches Raginei, Kajika's destiny is revealed to her and the "marriage game" is thus over.
- Kajika Louisa Kugami Burnsworth (花鹿・ルイーサ・陸深・バーンズワース) - Central character, only daughter of Harry Burnsworth and heiress to the family estate.
- Li-Leng Fang/Huang (Li-Ren, 倣立人) - Kajika's guardian and life-long friend. He is also the leader of the Fang family, a worldwide network of powerful people (legal and illegal alike).
- Eugene Alexandr De Volkan - Bachelor #1, whom Kajika calls Mustafa because of his physical resemblance to her childhood friend, a Snow Leopard.
- Prince Rumaty Ivan of Raginei - Bachelor #2. King-to-be of the country Raginei. Much of the story becomes central to Prince Rumaty and his country as the story unfolds.
- Carl Rosenthal - Bachelor #3. Heir to the Rosenthal estate. He is also claustrophobic.
- Mahaty Sheik Di Raginei - Grandfather of Prince Rumaty
- Issac Noei - Raginei imperial soldier
- Harry Burnsworth - Father of Kajika
- Somand - Prince Rumaty's elder brother and Crown Prince
- Sezun - Chamberlain to Prince Rumaty, younger brother of Quinza
- Najayra - Prince Rumaty's insane cousin aka Raginei Oracle/Priestess
- Quinza - Chamberlain to Prince Rumaty, older brother of Sezun
- Eddy Roberts - Raginei news reporter
Hanasakeru Seishōnen is written and illustrated by Natsumi Itsuki. The manga was serialized in Hakusensha's shōjo magazine (aimed at teenage girls), LaLa from February 24, 1987 to March 24, 1987 and again from August 24, 1989 and August 24, 1994.
- "ぴえろ～花咲ける青少年～サイト" [Hanasakeru Official Anime Website] (in Japanese). Retrieved 2009-08-03.
- "花咲ける青少年,01" [Hanasakeru Seishōnen 01] (in Japanese). comich.net. Retrieved 2009-08-04.
- "Hanasakeru Seishōnen Shōjo Manga to Get 1-Shot Sequel". Anime News Network. 2009-04-02. Retrieved 2009-08-04.
- "Hana-sakeru Seishōnen Manga to Get TV Anime". Anime News Network. 2008-12-01. Retrieved 2009-08-04.
- Hanasakeru Seishōnen (manga) at Anime News Network's Encyclopedia
- Hanasakeru Seishōnen (anime) at Anime News Network's Encyclopedia
- Official Studio Pierrot Anime Website (Japanese)
- Official NHK Anime Website (Japanese)
- Official Hakusensha manga Site (Japanese)
- Shelf Life review
- ANN anime review