''"The Secret Notes of Lady Kanoko" (Warau Kanoko-Sama)'' tells the story of Kanoko Naedoko and her episodic misadventures.

Kanoko Naedoko constantly changes schools but she never makes friends and doesn't get along with people very well... which is more than okay with her... as she considers herself a perfect ''[[ForScience observer]]''.

Her hobby is observing the students in all of the different schools she is transferred to, indeed her notes are journals of the most colorful ''[[ItAmusedMe classroom drama]]''.

But what will happen when Kanoko becomes involved with [[TallDarkAndSnarky Tsubaki]] [[JerkWithAHeartOfGold Haru]], [[{{Bishoujo}} Momoka]] [[TheDitz Hanai]] and [[{{Bishounen}} Natsukusa]] [[NiceGuy Touta]], her classmates at her ''99th'' school? Will she become more than just an observer this time?

''Warau Kanoko-sama'' was serialized in the Lala DX magazine from 2007 to 2009 and later compiled into three volumes. Tokyopop licensed it in the US, but only released two of the volumes until its shutdown.

It also has a sequel named ''"Koi Dano Ai Dano"'' (lit ''Love and Like and''), which features Kanoko and her friends in high-school. Kanoko has entered Takara no Tani High School with Tsubaki. Planning to live a normal high school life as a "refreshing girl", nevertheless Kanoko got dragged into the competition between the school's cultural cubs, and she was forced to join the on-the-verge-of-disbanding Newspaper Club. This sequel was serialized in the same magazine from 2010 to 2016, and compiled into twelve volumes.

And so join our heroine in her ''brilliant'' yet ''[[ManipulativeBastard mischievous]]'' endeavors!

There is also a collection of side-stories, mainly focusing on minor characters around Kanoko and Tsubaki, titled ''Koi Nashi Ai Nashi''.

!!This manga provides examples of:

* AbhorrentAdmirer: Otabe towards Kanoko and she is ''not'' amused.
* TheAce: Tsubaki. He admitted to never having any difficulties in anything he does until he falls in love with [[ObliviousToLove Kanoko]].
* ADayInTheLimelight: ''Koi Nashi Ai Nashi'' is basically this for the various minor characters of ''"Koi Dano Ai Dano"''.
* AllLoveIsUnrequited: Tsubaki towards Kanoko, Natsukusa towards Momoka, Himeno towards Hijiri. [[spoiler: Although Hijiri finally reciprocated Himeno's feelings]].
* AlphaBitch: Marine Suitenguu, who hides under a [[NiceGuy nice girl]] facade.
** LovableAlphaBitch: What Marine and Reiko Kakitsubata end up as.
* AlwaysIdenticalTwins: The Nekota Twins.
* AlwaysSomeoneBetter: Yabuki for Tsubaki.
* AmbiguouslyGay: Esupa Raidou.
* ArtEvolution: The sequel series has notably better art than the original.
* AscendedExtra:
** Yumemi who only appeared once in the prequel becomes a schoolmate of Kanoko and Tsubaki.
** Yamada is basically a background character who have around one page of interaction with Kanoko in the first chapter of the prequel. In the sequel, he joined Kanoko's group of middle school friends and acts as the OnlySaneMan in the group.
** Kakitsubata. Like Yamada, she has one chapter of focus in the prequel, but joined Kanoko's group of friends in the sequel.
* AttractiveBentGender: Natsukusa, as expected during a cultural festival. Everyone else in his all-boys school class who tried this ... not so.
* BabiesEverAfter: [[spoiler:The ending shows that Kanoko and Tsubaki have a daughter.]]
* BeautifulAllAlong: Kanoko. She is actually decent looking, but she really doesn't think of herself as attractive. Several people, especially Momoko, have noticed that it is really holding her back.
* BerserkButton: Hijiri has a massive one in regards to Himeno. Tsubaki accidentally presses it when [[spoiler:he tries to give theme park tickets to him, not knowing that Hijiri had given them to Himeno expecting her to take Tsubaki. Hijiri is quick to become ''furious'' and assume that Tsubaki is rejecting her.]]
* BigManOnCampus: Haru Tsubaki. Be it middle-school or high-school he is [[SexyManInstantHarem instantly popular]]. Hijiri Jouran counts too.
* {{Bishounen}}: Natsukusa Touta, Tsubaki Haru, Ouji Mitsuki, Jouran Hijiri, Yabuki You, etc.
* BrilliantButLazy: Tsubaki. He never studies yet manages to get in the top test ranks, and hates doing anything bothersome.
* BrutalHonesty: Kanoko is not one to mince words. She tends to say whatever's on her mind regardless of the circumstances. However, she's not oblivious to her rudeness like many examples, she just doesn't care.
* TheCameo: Kohaku Manaka, the idol Kanoko and Tsubaki met in ''Warau Kanoko-sama'', got namedropped regularly by background characters and appear in several background posters in ''Koi Dano Ai Dano''.
* CharacterDevelopment: If you can call it that. Tsubaki deliberately antagonises Natsukusa in the first chapter of the prequel (because of the LoveTriangle between them and Hanai). Kanoko's entrance into his life seems to take Tsubaki's attention away from being a deliberate JerkAss and he tolerates Natsukusa's presence thereafter. That being said, Hanai's attention being drawn to Kanoko also contributes.
** In the sequel, Momoka invokes this about Tsubaki. She thinks that Tsubaki was "cooler" in middle school, but that she would much rather be friends with the Tsubaki now.
* ChildhoodFriends:
** Jouran Hijiri and Himeno Sayuri.
** Shinonome Kyoko and Shingoujo Yukari.
** Natsukusa Touta and Yamada Jounoushin.
* ClosetGeek: Kiriko, one of Kanoko's classmates, is a closet otaku.
* CloudCuckooLander: [[ThinksLikeARomanceNovel Yumemi]], to an amazing degree. There doesn't seem to be a single waking moment of her life where she isn't getting swept up in (usually very strange and nonsensical) romantic delusions about what's going on around her.
* CoolKidAndLoserFriendship: Kanoko is a plain-looking, glasses wearing girl who has no interest in romance, while her friends are the most popular students in the school.
* CrazyJealousGuy: Tsubaki and Naedoko have a platonic relationship. It doesn't stop Tsubaki from acting like a wild dog with a bone to people or situations who/which take Naedoko away from him, however temporary. Momoka calls him out on this as delicately as she can.
* DeadpanSnarker: Much of the humor in the series comes from Naedoko dishing out some delicious snark. Tsubaki has some pretty good lines too, usually at Naedoko's expense.
* TheDitz: Momoka and Okyou-sempai. In the latter's case, the Newspaper Club leader had printed out explicit instructions knowing that ''she'' would be the incumbent leader when he had to leave.
* DoggedNiceGuy:
** Natsukusa Touta towards Hanai Momoka.
** Ouji Mitsuki towards Himeno Sayuri.
** Okyou-senpai for the Leader of the Newspaper Club.
* DumbBlonde: Momoka. She lives taking suplementary lessons and make-up exams.
* EasilyForgiven: Kakitsubata's (successful) attempt to force Momoka into the beauty contest and (unsuccessful) attempt to rig the contest and beat her are never publicly exposed, and she is [[KarmaHoudini never shown receiving her comeuppance for it.]] She even becomes part of Momoka's group of friends, attending her birthday party.
* EurekaMoment: Naedoko has one when she realises why she is getting so much unwanted attention from 'troublesome' individuals. The reason: [[spoiler:as a transfer student in middle school she never stayed in one place long enough for the 'troublesome' people to notice her.]]
* EvenTheGuysWantHim: Tsubaki. Yamada sure got in a good mood after seeing Tsubaki naked in the hot springs. According to him, everyone wanted to see him naked as well during the middle school trip.
* TheFakeCutie: What most ''[[{{kawaiiko}} cute girls]]'' are.
* FirstNameBasis: Hanai and [[spoiler:Himeno]] are the only non-family members who call Naedoko by her first name -- Kanoko -- and with a 'chan' honorific. Although, Hanai often uses the shortened form 'Kano-chan'. [[spoiler:Hijiri]] gets in on the act as well eventually.
* ForScience [=/=] ItAmusedMe: Kanoko's justification as to ''why'' she likes observing people.
* FriendlessBackground:
** Kanoko, who preferred being alone and observing people rather than socializing.
** Momoka, despite being popular with the boys, is actually a victim of bullying from the girls.
** [[spoiler:Tsubaki realises in Chapter 31 of the sequel that, despite his popularity, he never had someone he could consider his closest friend until Kanoko.]]
* [[GirlOfTheWeek Girl/Guy of The Week]]: Often in the ''prequel'', as Kanoko changed schools every new chapter. Sometimes mixed with VictimOfTheWeek and WoobieOfTheWeek
* GenkiGirl: What Kanoko ''wants'' to be. Fails hilariously because she can't be anything except a DeadpanSnarker.
* GoodIsNotNice: Kanoko and Tsubaki are not above manipulating and blackmailing people for their plans.
* HeroWorshipper: The Nekota twins simply ''adore'' Jouran!
* HeroicBSOD: Yumemi manages to have a comedic version when she is finally convinced that Naedoko and Tsubaki are not a couple. It doesn't last long, though -- neither the HeroicBSOD nor the convincing.
* HeroicSelfDeprecation: Downplayed in Naedoko's case. She is fully confident in herself as a person but she does acknowledge that she looks like she doesn't belong within the company she keeps.
* HugeSchoolgirl: Sayuri -- but only during elementary school.
* IDontWantToRuinOurFriendship: [[spoiler:Part of Naedoko's explanation for rejecting Tsubaki's confession in chapter 37. He sees through it.]]
* ILetYouWin: In the latest round of tests, Tsubaki deliberately lets his grades slip so Kanoko has a better chance of staying in the top 30 (if her grades go below the top 30, her mother won't let her live alone anymore). Kanoko is furious, since she was looking forward to competing against Tsubaki's scores and feels patronized.
* InLoveWithLove: Yumemi, big time.
* InSeriesNickname:
** Momoka calls her ''Kano-chan'' and Kanoko returns the favor with calling her ''Momo-chan''.
** "Nina" for Ninagawa Mayumi.
** "Prince" for Ouji Mitsuki.
** Hitoyoshi-senpai, the president of the Newspaper Club is always called ''Leader''.
** Shinonome Kyouko really wants to be called ''Okyou-senpai''
** Otabe and his ''Kano-tan''... ''She is clearly not happy about that one''.
* IntelligenceEqualsIsolation: While never outright stated, you can see that part of Kanoko's friendless background comes from this. In this case, she preferred it that way until the events of the prequel.
* ItsAllAboutMe: Ninagawa Mayumi, Aida Mitsue and Suo Naruichi.
* IWantMyBelovedToBeHappy:
** Why Tsubaki made Kanoko join the student council. Despite being a CrazyJealousGuy, he realized Kanoko likes being with many friends, and wants her to interact with a lot of people. This is also what he wants to maintain with Kanoko, whether they are in a platonic relationship or romantic one.
** Hijiri wants Sayuri to be with a respectable man. This is while he is ObliviousToLove [[spoiler:and unknowingly has requited feelings for her.]] In fact, a lot of things he does (as established in flashbacks) are with the intention of fulfiling her desires. This places his MagnificentBastard acts in a more magnanimous light.
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold: Kanoko and Tsubaki.
* {{Kawaiiko}}: Mayumi a.k.a Nina, Nami and Mitsue.
* TheKlutz: Kyoko, a.k.a ''Okyou-senpai''.
* LadyKillerInLove: [[TallDarkAndHandsome Tsubaki]] for Kanoko, [[NiceGuy Natsukusa]] for Momoka and [[PrincelyYoungMan Ouji]] for Sayuri.
* LapPillow: There is one instance where Kanoko is this for Tsubaki. There are no romantic undertones in this case -- Tsubaki overexerted himself after an unintentional race with Hijiri and Kanoko, as usual, doesn't get any further ideas than that he's tired.
* LastNameBasis:
** They are ''Tsubaki'' and ''Naedoko''.
** Natsukusa's first name "Touta", is easily forgotten if you don't pay attention
* LegalJailBait: What Otabe is into, though he is accused of being a Lolicon anyway.
* ManipulativeBastard: Quite a lot. In fact, most conflicts are driven by these characters trying to out-manipulate each other.
** Kanoko, though subverted that it's not usually malicious. However, she does love getting nasty letters from jealous girls in her shoebox because she considers them good blackmail material.
** Hijiri Jouran. He has stated several times that Kanoko's plans are what exactly he would have done if he were in the same position.
** Mizukami, the student council vice president.
** Tsubaki and Himeno Sayuri can be quite manipulative, too, although to a lesser extent.
* {{Meganekko}}: Kanoko, Sachiko (pre-make over) and Yukari.
* MeaningfulName: the author [[HurricaneOfPuns loves them]]!
--> [[CornerOfWoe Kinokodani]] Sachiko (kinoko=mushroom) who is a gloomy girl.\\
[[{{Kawaiiko}} Kawai]] Nami, a cute(kawaii) girl.\\
[[TheAce Subeyoshi]] Takeo, who is ''"good at everything as his name sujests"''.\\
[[ImagineSpot Yumemi]] Hitomi, a girl who loves to fantasize/dream. (''Yumemi''=dream seer + ''Hitomi''=eyes).\\
The [[RichPeople Kaneari family]], ''Kane''=Money.\\
[[ISeeDeadPeople Esupa]] Raidou, who claims he can see spirits(''Esper''), and [[PunnyName Oka Ruto]] who loves the ''Occult'', ghost stories, U.F.Os and such.\\
[[PrincelyYoungMan Ouji]] Mitsuki is called "Prince" by his fangirls.\\
[[EverythingIsBetterWithPrincesses Himeno]] Sayuri is a beautiful girl, "the school's ''princess''".
* NewTransferStudent: Naedoko's main shtick in the prequel because of her father's job. Eventually she begins to wish to stay at the same middle school as Tsubaki, Hanai and Natsukuksa and gets it granted in the final chapter. In the sequel she lives alone to deny this trope again although she gets threatened with fulfilling it if she falls below a certain school ranking.
* NiceGuy: Natsukusa and Momoka are Kanoko's "nice friends".
** Yamada, one of Kanoko and Tsubaki's middle school classmates, fits this trope too.
** The Newspaper Club leader is also a NiceGuy. Kanoko manages to use this to her advantage to make him ''appear'' menacing to the Broadcasting club.
* [[NoSocialSkills No Friendship Skills]]: Kanoko worries a lot about this. What is normal and what is not in her friendship with Tsubaki, Momoka and Natsukusa.
* NotSoDifferent:
** Jouran Hijiri ''thinks'' he has this kind of dynamic with Tsubaki, but that's only because he attributes Naedoko's actions to him. According to Hijiri's ChildhoodFriend Sayuri, they're actually complete opposites. In fact Sayuri and Tsubaki fit this trope better.
** An example from the side-story collection: Shingyouji thinks she has nothing in common with the Computer Club leader, Otabe-san. Unbeknownst to her, and revealed to the readers at the end of her ADayInTheLimelight chapter, she has the same greed for money.
* ObliviousToLove: Kanoko. She can't even process the posibility of ''Tsubaki'' having feelings for her. For much of the sequel it's PlayedForLaughs but after [[spoiler:Tsubaki's confession]] it's played more seriously.
** She even mistakes Otabe's obvious obsession with her (she fulfills his [[LegalJailBait fetishes]] to a "T") as him figuring out her real role in the Newspaper Club and trying to freak her out to put her off-balance.
** Momoka isn't aware of the fact that ''[[EveryoneCanSeeIt Natsukusa]] likes her''.
** Hijiri ''fails'' to realise that Sayuri ''likes'' him romantically... In fact he starts to think that maybe she is interested in Tsubaki. [[spoiler: He gets better eventually.]]
* ObfuscatingStupidity: Kanoko in the sequel, pretends to be a ''normal'' member of the News Paper Club instead of the ''[[ManipulativeBastard strategist]]'' she indeed is.
** [[spoiler: The wrong people still discover her scheming ways eventually anyway.]]
* OhCrap:
** In the first chapter of the prequel, Kanoko uses the P.A. system to threaten her class-mates who are bullying Hanai. She yells that she knows all their secrets before she is cut off by a teacher. The students don't take her at all seriously, but their expressions change upon hearing:
---> ''Yamada'': "Why does she know I created a copy of the studio's key?"
* OneHundredAndEight: The number of middle schools Kanoko has been to. The significance is even referenced in the sequel.
* OperationJealousy: [[spoiler:Himeno]] resorts to this in order to gain the right attention from [[spoiler:Hijiri]].
** Notably, Tsubaki rejects the idea of trying this on Kanoko, stating that it's a rather cruel way to treat the person you love, and she probably wouldn't get it anyways.
* OutOfFocus: The Newspaper Club gets pushed aside once Kanoko and Tsubaki join the Student Council.
* PerpetualFrowner: Yabuki.
* PerpetualSmiler: Mizukami.
* RedOniBlueOni: Tsubaki is the blue to Natsukusa's red, but he's the red to Yakubi's blue.
* RelationshipUpgrade: [[spoiler: Hijiri and Himeno in chapter 27.]]
* RomanticTwoGirlFriendship: Momoka and Kanoko eventually. Since both of them never had REAL friends before, their friendship is quite cute and amusing.
** It's occasionally ventured into the HoYay territory. Even Tsubaki gets insecure over their friendship, and thinks to himself,"Good thing Hanai isn't a guy...I'm saved." THIS after Momo's very suggestive line about, well, wanting to become a guy. One can't help but draw conclusions as to why after reading her next exchange.
--->'''Kanoko:''' ''(referring to Tsubaki's affection)'' If you want something, you have to fight for it, get it?!
--->'''Momoka:''' ...If...I were a guy, I'd surely fight...\\
'''Kanoko''': Eh?\\
'''Momoka:''' ''(smiles in exasperation and then takes Kanoko's hands)'' There's someone I like better than Tsubaki-kun, this one is true!
* ShipperOnDeck: Yumemi is a proper Kanoko x Tsubaki fangirl!!
** Yamada ships Natsukusa and Momoka.
** [[spoiler: Mizukami supports Yabuki and Kanoko]]
* TheStoic: Yabuki You, the president of the Student Council. [[spoiler:Which is why his confession to Kanoko completely blindsides her]].
* StrongFamilyResemblance:
** Momo's little brother, ''Ume'', is like a [[{{Bishounen}} male version]] of her.
** Natsukusa's siblings look a lot like him too.
** The Yabuki siblings, they could easily be mistaken for [[HalfIdenticalTwins twins]], according to You. Otabe heavily disagrees.
* TallDarkAndHandsome: Haru Tsubaki.
* TeacherStudentRomance: While Marine was honestly in love with him, the teacher [[GoldDigger not so much]].
** Kisen gains a crush for the female teacher. In an omake, he gets jealous when Subeyoshi goes to her for advice.
* TooCleverByHalf: Kanoko falls into this sometimes. She's brilliant at playing the MagnificentBastard, but can't seem to turn it off sometimes, so she ends up overanalyzing behavior or trying to find ulterior motives when there are none. For example, Kanoko stays in the Newspaper Club because she's trying to find out what possible motive Tsubaki could have for sticking around there as well, when he's simply there because he wants to be around her.
* TransferStudentUniforms: Kanoko transfers to a new middle school every chapter but always wears the same uniform.
* {{Tsundere}}: A platonic variant, Kakitsubata Reiko, toward her friends.
* UglyGuyHotWife: Kakitsubata's parents. Her father looks incredibly unremarkable compared to her mother. Which also means ...
** TheUglyGuysHotDaughter
* UnluckyChildhoodFriend:
** [[{{Bishoujo}} Sayuri]] for [[ObliviousToLove Hijiri]]. [[spoiler:[[VictoriousChildhoodFriend Until that changes in chapter 27.]]]]
** [[AmbiguouslyGay Esupa]] for Oka.
* VictoriousChildhoodFriend:
** In a way, [[spoiler:Sayuri and Hijiri are this for each other]].
* VitriolicBestBuds:
** This can be the view of the friendship between Tsubaki and Natsukusa, albeit mostly from Tsubaki's perspective.
** On the other hand, this can be said of the quote unquote friendship between Tsubaki and [[spoiler:Sayuri once they join the student council.]] Especially from the perspective of the latter.
* WhamEpisode:
** In chapter 33, [[spoiler:Tsubaki confesses to Naedoko in the closing pages and asks if he can be her boyfriend.]]
** In chapter 37, [[spoiler:Naedoko rejects the confession on the first few pages. At the end of the chapter, after Tsubaki realises why, he repeats it and she accepts.]]
* WhatHappenedToTheMouse:
** Kanoko developed a little crush on Natsukusa in the first chapter of ''Warau Kanoko-sama'', which led to her first interaction with Tsubaki, and consequently with Momoka. The chapter ends with all four becoming friends, but Kanoko's crush is never brought up again afterwards.
** Uchiki Nako. Near the end of ''Warau Kanoko-sama'', he, with fellow minor characters Yamada and Kakitsubata, are shown to celebrate Momoka's birthday together with Kanoko, Tsubaki and Natsukusa. While Yamada and Kakitsubata [[AscendedExtra got to regularly appear in the sequel]], Nako is nowhere to be found.
** Mibu Naoya, Yumemi's LoveInterest in the prequel. Justified since he's one year younger and thus still in middle school when ''Koi Dano Ai Dano'' started. Still a bit jarring that Yumemi never mentioned him even once, considering [[GenkiGirl her]] [[InLoveWithLove personality]].[[note]]Possibly explained in the side stories. She somehow didn't think they were actually dating and so never thought to bring him up.[[/note]]
* YamatoNadeshiko: Kanoko really wishes and thinks she could be this during her high school years so she can become better suited as Hanai's best friend. Tsubaki is quick to tell her it's impossible.