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Familiar Diversions

I'm a librarian who loves anime, manga, and reading a wide variety of genres.

Currently reading

How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom, Vol. 1
Dojyomaru, Fuyuyuki, Sean McCann
Progress: 103/374 pages
Darkly Dreaming Dexter
Jeff Lindsay
Progress: 424/470 minutes
Wait Till Helen Comes: A Ghost Story
Mary Downing Hahn
Progress: 184/184 pages
Parental Guidance
Avery Flynn
Progress: 40 %
An Offer From a Gentleman
Julia Quinn
Progress: 102/358 pages
The Twisted Ones
T. Kingfisher
Progress: 385/385 pages
Educated
Tara Westover
Progress: 315/730 minutes
My Next Life as a Villainess: All Routes Lead to Doom!, Vol. 2
Satoru Yamaguchi, Nami Hidaka
Progress: 24/171 pages
Graphic Medicine Manifesto
MK Czerwiec, Kimberly R. Myers, Scott T. Smith, Michael J. Green, Susan Merrill Squier, Ian Williams
Progress: 26/172 pages
Ao Oni: Mutation
Kenji Kuroda, Karin Suzuragi, Alexander Keller-Nelson
Progress: 30/152 pages

Natsume's Book of Friends (vol. 1) by Yuki Midorikawa, translated by Lillian Olsen

Natsume's Book of Friends, Vol. 1 - Yuki Midorikawa, Lillian Olsen

This series is, for the most part, pretty episodic, so I'll try to briefly mention which stories are covered in each volume. In this volume, Natsume learns about the Book of Friends and gains Nyanko-sensei as a bodyguard. Many years ago, Natsume's grandmother traveled from place to place, dominating yokai (spirits and supernatural beings) and forcing them to write their names in her Book of Friends. As the owner of the Book of Friends, Natsume could opt to control those yokai, but instead he decides to give as many names back as he can. In the second chapter, he helps a Dew God get his name back and sees that there can be good/bittersweet relationships between yokai and humans. In the third chapter, he learns that someone has been exorcising yokai in a particular area, and he discovers that one of his classmates can probably see yokai too. In the fourth chapter, Natsume helps a swallow yokai see the human who befriended her one last time before she fades away.

Even though I've seen the anime multiple times, and nothing in this volume was a surprise to me, it still made me cry. Natsume says he doesn't care for yokai and maybe sees giving them their names back as a way of cutting them out of his life. However, in reality, his efforts seem to increase his empathy for them. Natsume's a kind kid, and I think Nyanko-sensei senses that too.

The artwork is nice, but has a very wispy feel to it, different enough from the anime that it took me some time to get used to it.

 

(Original review posted on A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions.)