No.6»キラッ☆

hiriajuu


リア充?なにそれおいしいの?


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No.6 by Atsuko Asano; A Review
No.6»Shion
hiriajuu
Aaah finally got around to writing this. Does anyone still even care about discussing No.6? My care has certainly faded a bit, which is why it took me so long to get this up. You wouldn't believe how many times I rewatched this MAD to regain my enthusiasm, though I can't say that's a bad thing. This is still a suuupeeerrr loooonnnggg review though. Well, there's a lot that I want to say. Spoilers for everything if you haven't been spoiled already.


-----------------------------------ALL THE WORLD'S A STAGE-----------------------------------

No.6 brings us into your fairly standard dystopian world. Set in an alternate near future, we've got a "dream city" called No.6 complete with the most advanced technology and medical, education, and entertainment facilities you can imagine. But all that comes at a price, as our main character Shion, an elite in this city, is going to find out. The story starts off on Shion's 12th birthday, where he saves an escaped convict named Nezumi in the midst of a typhoon and shelters him for the night. Fast forward to four years later, where signs of a mysterious deadly outbreak start appearing within the city, Shion is falsely arrested, and Nezumi shows back up to save him and brings him to the "real world".

And that's the start of Atsuko Asano's 8 year, 9 volume dystopian sci-fi adventure. The novels take place in two locations simultaneously - the dream city No.6 and its dregs, West Block. I must admit that I haven't read much in the way of dystopian fiction before No.6. I've read Fahrenheit 451 and 1984, but they were both a while ago and I can't say I remember much of them anymore. So I don't know how it compares to other books of the same genre, but I think the world of No.6 is an incredibly detailed and unique one. First off, the city is still very new - not much more than a generation has passed since its creation. It's still a city in the midst of development with citizens not totally familiar with the system of rule, thus why it's still vulnerable. All it takes for it to be destroyed in the end is a short coup d'etat, and that's that. It's fascinating how something so carefully built up collapses in almost an instant. One crack and the entire thing falls apart, like a card tower. But going back a bit - Asano paints the city in a really meticulous manner. Whenever we see scenes from inside No.6, we mainly see them through the eyes of Karan, Shion's mother. That means we see the normal everyday life inside the city, from running a shop to playing with kids to relaxing in the park and so on. Frankly it gets pretty tedious at times, because nothing of importance ever happens during those segments for the most part. But they're essential for world building - the world we see isn't that much different from our own. We can very easily relate the various scenes from the novels to our own lives. And thus every time one of the city's more "dystopian" reveals pops up, it feels all the more eerie. There were no giant shocking revelations, just some small and subtle ones, like regulating the education system or tracking the places you've been and so on. They're all things you can imagine happening in the real world, and combined with the very "normal" depictions of the city, they hit home pretty hard. It's that kind of writing that really helps to bring us closer to the world of No.6.

Moving on to the other major location of the story, we have West Block. Pretty much the complete opposite of No.6, this is a dog eat dog world where Shion almost loses his life and/or chastity multiple times the first day he steps into the marketplace. In direct contrast to the familiar yet eerie feeling we get from inside the city, West Block gives us a harsh and cruel world with no sugar-coating. That's not to say it's not realistic though, Asano builds this half of the setting in as much detail as the other. It's not hard to imagine that this kind of place exists in the real world as well. This is where all the more intense bits of the story take place, such as the kidnapping and the manhunt and Shion and Nezumi arguing like they usually do. It's the more entertaining side, to put it bluntly. Although you could say that there's a 3rd major location in the story, the correctional facility. Somewhere in between West Block and No.6 and where a great bulk of the novels take place. It's where we get the some of the most major developments in Shion's and Nezumi's characters and the plot. Indeed, the correctional facility should be the third setting on the list.

-----------------------------------AND ALL THE MEN AND WOMEN MERELY PLAYERS-----------------------------------

There's a whole bunch of characters in No.6, though the majority don't play much more than small roles. Starting with the side characters - In No.6, we have Safu, Shion's childhood friend. I have to admit that I didn't care much for her at first. She never had much of a role in the beginning other than being in love with Shion, and to be honest her love wasn't quite, er, well introduced. I didn't dislike her, but I couldn't bring myself to care much about her either. It was only after her short monologues here and there after her kidnapping that I started to feel a bit sorry for her and thought "ah, she's just a girl in a helpless love." And then volume 8 chapter 1 happened. And it became my favorite chapter. And Safu became my 3rd favorite character. The way her love concludes, the way her life concludes - it's like Asano knew my exact taste for tragedy. I especially love Shion's monologue during the entire thing. The way his mind breaks down and is still in pieces even after he leaves Safu, the way he still has regrets but Safu lets him go - aah, it was painful. So beautifully painful. Love it.
Next is Karan, Shion's mother. She ended up with much less of a role than I expected, but she's a very consistent character throughout. She symbolizes the "stability" of daily life, the average resident of No.6 that goes on living despite anything else that's happening. She and Safu represent the part of No.6 that Shion keeps fighting for throughout the story. I do wish Asano included the scene of her and Shion reuniting in the end. It was brought up so many times, but it ended up not being shown. Pretty disappointing (and I wanted to see Nezumi being confused after being hugged).
Safu is a tragic character, but the most tragic of them all might be Lili. Like Karan, she's more of a symbol than a character with any major role, but she's quite a major symbol. At first I thought she was just a slightly precocious kid, but then we find out that her father died right in front of her. Then we find out that Getsuyaku is her stepfather, and oh man. The number of flags raised for Getsuyaku's death were somewhere in the millions range, but I was still hoping Asano wouldn't do it. But not only did she do it, she just had to include a long monologue of how he's such a loving and caring family man who can't wait to get home to his step-daughter right beforehand. And then we have Yoming, her uncle, who turns into crazy revolutionist. I was honestly surprised that he didn't die, since I thought he had some giant karma piled up after indirectly causing the deaths of so many people. It might have been Asano's way of showing Lili a bit of pity after all the men in her life turned out death or missing, but I'm not sure if she can have a nice family dinner with her uncle after all that. Anyway, this little girl symbolizes the indirect damage No.6 causes to its people after directly killing off a bunch of them. Going back to Yoming for a bit - he makes a nice foil to Nezumi in my opinion. They both want to destroy No.6, but they go about it in very different ways and you could say one of them succeeds while the other fails. Yoming ends up being consumed by his hatred for No.6, to the point that he doesn't care what methods he uses to destroy the place and ends up becoming similar to No.6 himself. Nezumi's incredibly focused on destroying No.6, but he didn't become "consumed" by it, probably just because he has someone like Shion to hold him back. Yoming has his family and Karan, but it seems that they're not quite as effective. In any case, he plays a major role in making the city collapse in the end, though it doesn't all go as he had planned.
Lastly in No.6, there's the mayor and the man in the white lab coat. The former is nicknamed Fennec, but I wish it belonged to the latter since it's tedious typing out his "name" every time. I'll just call him Lab Coat. Lab Coat is the one who "altered" Safu and essentially the one behind all the underground experiments in No.6. He's also manipulating the mayor whenever he can, so he's pretty much the secret ruler of No.6 while the mayor is just a figurehead. I never quite got a grasp on the mayor's character - he comes off as a somewhat reluctant ruler to me, not the type of person you'd imagine at the top of No.6. He gives in quite easily at the end and commits suicide, while Lab Coat's karma catches up to him and he becomes a victim of the parasite bees. Again, these two aren't as much of characters as they are representations of No.6 itself. They're a manifestation of what Shion and Nezumi are fighting against.
Moving into West Block, we have Inukashi, a short girl(?) that runs a hotel. There's quite a few aspects to her personality. At first she comes off as someone similar to Nezumi with her sharp tongue, clever tactics, and cautiousness. But we soon find out that she's still quite immature, or at least vulnerable. She's a crybaby, as Nezumi often shows us. He also shows us that it's very easy to manipulate her through her weaknesses. In fact a lot of her weaker side is shown through Nezumi's harassment, poor girl. But she's still strong, or at least she's good at putting up a strong front. She also gets a baby. That development seemed totally random to me at first and I didn't know what to think of it, but by the end we see how much Inukashi has grown to love little Shion and it's adorable. In the earlier novels it was easy to see Inukashi's childish side, but by the end I couldn't see much of it at all. She's a character that really matured by the end.
There's also Rikiga, the old guy. Rather than a father figure I'd say he's more of the crazy uncle or grandfather figure to Shion, but yeah. I have to say I didn't really like him by the end. He has his moments and is quite useful to the plot, but the later volumes have him do little more than complain and sit around being useless. Yeah, he drives everyone into No.6 in volume 9, but the car is the useful one. If he wasn't there Shion would have just snatched it and ran off.

-----------------------------------SHALL I COMPARE THEE TO A SUMMER'S DAY?-----------------------------------

And finally we have Shion and Nezumi. Save the best for last. No.6 is only half about the collapse of a city. The other half is about these two - the growth and development of themselves and their relationship. You can't love No.6 if you don't love these two.

Shion, our protagonist, is a bright yet naive teenager who grew up as an elite in No.6. He may be clueless, but he's incredibly straightforward and doesn't hesitate to act. He's become one of my favorite protagonists of all time with his active personality. He's also quite the yandere, which is hinted at since the first chapter of the first volume. Nezumi, or rather the situations they get into where Nezumi is in danger, flips his yandere switch a lot. He indeed has a bad habit of strangling people. It keeps getting worse and worse until volume 7 where he finally actualy kills someone, and what a glorious scene it is. I like how Shion tends to upset the balance between good and evil in the story. He's described as an angel by one character and a demon by the other. He fights for what he believes is right, but included in that righteousness is "anyone who tries to kill Nezumi should die, of course." I can see why Nezumi is so afraid of him - he's so emotionally unstable, yet he's the type of person that's driven by his emotions. He's got a one track one, but that track can switch at random. All I know is that nearly everything he does, he does for Nezumi, but that in itself isn't exactly a good thing. He also has a habit of interrupting narration during intense scenes to comment on how pretty Nezumi's eyes are. It can get annoying, but it does show the inner workings of Shion's mind, which isn't totally normal.

Nezumi is my waifu our second main character. He's portrayed as perfect in almost all aspects. He's tall and good looking, a skilled actor and singer, is clever and strategic, has fighting abilities, and so on. Oh, and he's a complete literature nerd, so he's quite smart as well. He's just this badass fine arts enthusiast. He's also that type of character with a mysterious past and holds many secrets, but unlike most characters of that variety, Nezumi is snarky and sarcastic and really amusing all around. Asano might have gone a bit far with this guy but hey, I have no objections. He's very skeptical of Shion at first and gets into many arguments with him, but its not long before he softens up around him, whether he wants to or not. It eventually gets to the point where he cries for Shion and even takes a bullet for him. While Shion grows up mentally, Nezumi grows up emotionally. But I have to admit - after his cool and mysterious layer gets peeled off after his past is revealed, it became hard for me to take Nezumi seriously. He's the last descendant of the forest people, the songstress fated to protect the land with his beautiful singing voice and song-- yeah. Combine that with his damsel in distress type role in the later novels, and... Oh Nezumi you adorable little thing, don't worry, I'll protect yoouuu~ Yeah, I can totally feel the moe that Shion feels.

When you put these two together, you get something of a dysfunctional yet functional relationship. They're opposites that complement each other's strong and weak points, but also bring about some disorder like Shion's yandere and Nezumi's fear and confusion. In any case, it's always enjoyable to see these two interact and how they handle the situations they get into. They're both so endearing. I love how you just can't give a name to this relationship. Or rather, I love how Asano continuously avoids giving a name to it. It is love? Sure, there's some of that in there, though it's only a "pure" love. But that's far from the only thing. It's not that you can't describe their relationship in one or a few words, it's just impossible to. Their relationship is characterized by everything they go through together, from their daily life in West Block to all the life and death situations later on. They each have their own ideals, not only about the world but about each other. Shion refuses to see Nezumi's cruel side, as seen during the kidnapping and torture scene in volume 4. Nezumi also holds Shion at some higher level - every time Shion goes into one of his crazy killer modes, the first thing Nezumi does is try to stop him, try and keep him innocent. When he finally fails to stop him in volume 7, he denies reality at first in a similar fashion to Shion's. They both want to see each other as some greater human being, even though they both might not be. It's interesting to observe their role reversal later on. In the first few novels it's always Nezumi protecting Shion and guiding him around. But not long after they infiltrate the correctional facility, Shion is the one protecting Nezumi in almost all the most dangerous events. They also have somewhat of a reversal of ideals - Shion thinks of "life or death" while Nezumi contemplates that "third path". Basically, they've deeply influenced and affected each other in all aspects of their lives. Each one is always contemplating the other. Shion's trying to understand Nezumi's past and his way of thinking, while Nezumi's trying to make sense of Shion's constantly changing behavior and values. Shion is captivated, but Nezumi is frightened. By the end each of them still hasn't fully grasped the other and they part ways. But one thing's for sure - each of them is the other's most important person. Their relationship carries the weight of both of their lives, it's no light thing. But it's definitely a beautiful thing.
By the way, I can't imagine them in a sexual relationship. I just can't. I'm probably one of the 5 people left that think so, but yeah. Their love is pure. It's a beautifully platonic one, and I love it that way and would prefer nothing more.

-----------------------------------THAT WAY MADNESS LIES-----------------------------------

The story of No.6 is quite a simple and straightforward one, telling about one large event - namely, the collapse of No.6. It seems like quite the grandiose subject, and it is indeed one, but you'd be surprised by how simple and direct of a story it is in the end. There's no giant shocking plot twists. There are giant shocking events, but none of them are twists per say. The story progresses by discovering the secrets that have been there all along rather than creating any "new" developments, so to speak. The pacing is also pretty slow. The novels get thinner and thinner in content as they go along. Volume 1 was jam-packed with information, and everything up until volume 4 was quite eventful as well. Volumes 5 - 8 mainly depict either action scenes or scenes building up to No.6's collapse, which doesn't involve as much content as the previous volumes did. They were still very engaging though - I remember not being able to stop reading once the infiltration arc started and finished up to volume 8 with barely any breaks in between. But still, a 5 volume facility infiltration is quite long. The monologues definitely padded things out, but I can't complain. In fact the monologues are probably my favorite thing about the novels and the writing. Reading Shion's or Nezumi's or anyone else's thoughts really helps to add emotional depth to the story. And it's exactly that emotional depth that got me so engaged in the story and attached to the characters. Though there are also instances of padding things out that felt a bit unnecessary and dragged out, for example the whole thing about who Shion's dad is or the lengthy discussion about Suifuu. I felt like Asano was planning on doing something with them later, but they ended up being irrelevant.

There's plenty of themes scattered around the story, all of them pretty obvious. We have "good and evil", or rather the unclear distinctions between them. No.6 is obviously evil, but the people living inside it aren't. West Block may be opposing No.6, but it isn't exactly the face of good either. Nezumi fights for good, but he isn't afraid to use some cruel tactics. And Shion is some giant mess of the two, with the way he's saving someone one minute and killing someone else the next. We then have "destruction and rebirth", which applies to the entire planet that they live in, the city No.6, and Shion's soul after he met Nezumi and was introduced to the "real world". It's interesting how Asano said that she started writing No.6 around 9/11 and finished around 3/11. The start of the novels was the start of a long struggle, while the end wasn't quite a conclusion but a new beginning, the start of reconstruction. Interesting how things worked out that way. There's also "man vs nature", as seen with Elyurias and No.6. No.6 isn't exactly anti-nature, it's more like they're trying to use nature to their advantage. Elyurias is very clearly against the ones who destroyed her forest, but in the end the collapse of No.6 is caused by itself rather than Elyurias. The bees were just a catalyst, it's the revolt brought about by the citizens that made the city crumble in a surprisingly short period of time. In this case the big theme is more "mankind vs itself". Well, it's not like any of that requires deep thought. The messages in No.6 are as subtle as... well, as subtle as your standard Japanese fiction aimed at young people. In other words, as subtle as a brick hitting your face. But well, the messages got through. They're clear and not half-baked. I can really see what was in Asano's mind as she wrote this.

-----------------------------------PARTING IS SUCH SWEET SORROW-----------------------------------

Now onto the ending. The last volume was, to be frank, kind of underwhelming. I got to chapter 4 and was like "Eh, last chapter already? But nothing's happened yet?" That final chapter was seriously jam-packed with information, essentially revealing every single mystery of the story to date. And it was done by having all the characters sit in a circle and talk about it. Alrighty then. Well, it's not like I was expecting much else since Shion was essentially handed a plot USB. I believe this is the first time I've encountered a series that hands you the plot on a USB. But all the information revealed is indeed thorough and covers all the essential points, though it was a bit too much information to take in at once. After that the story turns into Macross as Nezumi gets up in front of the city and Listen to my song! He becomes Ranka-chan, the city is mesmerized, he convinces the Queen Bee to stop her rampage, and the world is at peace once again. ...Heh. It's not a totally bad ending, it did wrap everything up and you can't say it came out of nowhere since it fits with all the developments before. It was just ridiculous, but a very entertaining kind of ridiculous. The kind that'll never let me take Nezumi seriously again. The ending did seem kind of rushed, and you have to wonder why that's so. Asano had an entire volume to spread things out, but she still decided to cram it all into the last chapter. Perhaps that's just how it worked out, for better or worse. There are still some plot holes I'm wondering about. One, how is Elyurias going to continuing hatching her bees? She's an immortal but without an immortal body, so she needs to keep respawning. But doesn't she need one of the forest tribe's songstresses (yes I'm going to keep using this term), or else she'll have to keep laying eggs inside humans and have them die? The only songstress left obviously isn't there anymore, so how's that going to work? And two, how did the researchers get that many bees for experiments anyway? Were they all Elyurias bees? How did they get them? Or were they artificially made? Oh well, it seems that the science in this series is above our comprehension.

The ending of No.6 leaves us with the reconstruction of a former dystopia. The city has been left in Shion's hands, but who knows how it's going to develop in the future? As pointed out in the novels itself, it's highly possible that another dystopia will be made. Who knows if Shion's ideals will carry through or not? But that's not the story at hand. The story at hand gives us Nezumi leaving Shion, which perplexed a great number of readers. I suppose it was quite the abrupt departure, there was barely any build up to it. I would have preferred a bit more time between the city's collapse and Nezumi's leaving, or at least have depicted the two going back to Karan. The scene shift was way too sudden. But frankly it was predictable and made perfect sense to me. Why did Nezumi leave? Because he finally could leave. He's been shackled to No.6 for 12 years of his life, and now that it's finally collapsed, he can finally go somewhere else. He's not leaving because he has somewhere he needs to go, he's leaving just for the sake of leaving. On the other hand, Shion has his job to do in No.6 and needs to stay. Besides that, I honestly can't see them continuing to live together after all that happened during the infiltration. Nezumi is scared of Shion, and it only gets worse as the novels went on. He can't act normally around him after he feels the burden of letting Shion kill someone. Shion himself still desperately wants to live with Nezumi. It's indeed sad how his wishes of "meeting summer" with Nezumi and going back to their underground house were never fulfilled. They could have visited that place one last time before Nezumi left, but not going back represents how they can't return to the life they once led. Continuing to stay with Nezumi would only serve to maintain Shion's emotional instability, since he would never be able to face the "real world." He needs to learn how to live a life that doesn't revolve around Nezumi, while Nezumi needs some time to sort out his thoughts and feelings about Shion. They just need some time apart. Their relationship didn't work out the first time around, but they'll meet again one day. And when they do, they can start over again or pick up where they left off. They can try to understand each other again. Maybe they'll start a new journey together. But they'll meet again for sure, because they're each other's most important person.

-----------------------------------MY WORDS FLY UP, MY THOUGHTS REMAIN BELOW-----------------------------------

As a dystopian fiction, No.6 doesn't bring anything new to the table, but it doesn't do anything wrong either. It's a very solid piece of work, with its strengths lying in the two very engaging lead characters and the emotional monologues. The plot has its flaws and thus I can't say it's perfect, but it will forever be a masterpiece in my heart. I love it, I love it so very much. NO.6に出逢えてよかった、そして━━

「再会を必ず」

(Well, that's my dream at least. Can we get an epilogue-epilogue, please Asano? A sequel? A volume 10? An extra of any sort? Please?)


This is the first and only work by Atsuko Asano I've read. No.6 has definitely gotten me interested in her other books, but I don't know, there's not much in the way of translations even in Chinese. Battery is her other famous series, but my interest in baseball is somewhere in the negatives... So I doubt I'll read anything else by her anytime soon, unless any of you have any recommendations. This is also the first Japanese YA novel I've read. I've read my fair share of light novels, but YA novels are a different matter. I can't say the level of difficulty was that much higher, though No.6 is a book for middle schoolers (I'll never be able to get over this). But the subject matter is certainly much more deep than your typical LN.
I have a list of LNs I've read here. It's not much and No.6 is the longest series on there (though that'll change when I get around to finishing Index), but yeah. My list will continue to grow after this. \o/

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I'd love and epilogue of an epilogue. And I completely agree on your thoughts about Nezumi having to leave. Also, I truly believe that they will definitely meet again some day. And when they do, they will have a much better understanding of each other and maybe develop their relationship into something further.

Thanks for your review. <3

Yes, even though I love their pure and platonic relationship, I can see it developing into something further when they meet again. <3

Thank you for reading!

You put a lot of effort into this series and review, so thanks and props to you. I loved the novels, I can't remember the last time I've grown so attached to characters and the story. And I was actually satisfied with the ending(the last scene of volume 9 was great) so that's a plus, in my book. I plan on reading Battery and she also wrote Telepathy Girl Ran, right? Hopefully the drama CDs will fill the gap in my heart that the anime left(but I doubt it lol). Anyway, thanks Asano for No.6!

Thank you for reading my rambles! "Attached" definitely describes how I feel, yep. She did write Ran, though it seems like a totally different type of story.

Butting in to say YES YOU SHOULD TOTALLY READ/WATCH RAN, because that thing was my childhood, and 50% of my incentive for watching/reading No. 6. because it is good and has great girl characters, which, like, mostly makes up for what happened to Safu in these novels. (It is very different, tho. But sweet and fun.)

...okay butting out now. (^u^;;)

No.6 is very difficult to understand, but I very much enjoyed it. You're absolutely right about everything, especially Nezumi and Shion. They need time to understand each other and see what the future has in store for them. I would love it if that was concluded in one final volume...maybe two. ^_^ Thanks for posting the summaries. They will be a definite reference for my fanfic based on the novels. You're awesome!

Thanks for the kind words and for reading! I thought the only difficult thing to understand was the whole Elyurias deal, though that was most of the plot so yeah. I'll always be hoping for a bit more from Asano~

Waiting for the epilogue of an epilogue too >_<. I'm absolutely agree with everything you say, and laughing hard because of "Oh Nezumi you adorable little thing, don't worry, I'll protect yoouuu~" that you write.
No.6 is also my first time YA novel I read and make me really captive. Asano-sensei please give us volume ten. Thank you for the review and novel summary before.

I will wait forever. ;;
Ahah, Nezumi is the major cause of my sillier thoughts about the series. Thanks for reading my long rambling!

You can count me as one of the other five people who just can't see them in a sexual relationship, as things stand in the novels. I thought the ending (with Nezumi leaving) was actually pretty much right - a "happy" ending in which they stayed together would have seemed silly to me. They definitely needed time to grow up and see some sort of normal life, to get a better hold on their feelings when they aren't in extraordinary circumstances. But after the epilogue, when I thought about it, it's still kind of a downer. With Safu dead and Nezumi gone, Shion is now stuck back in the city he claimed he didn't want to return to, alone. (Well, with his mother and in contact with Inukashi. But without his two most important non-relatives. After Safu, he's sort of the loser in all this.) So I also hope there's eventually more to the story.

(And at the end of the anime, Shion destroys the data, symbolically crushing the plot and reminding us that they just didn't care.)

Reading No. 6 reminded me that I liked the anime adaptation of Telepathy Shoujo Ran, so I'm planning to read that. I barely remember it, though, and am fairly certain it has virtually nothing in common with No. 6 beyond being written by Asano Atsuko. It seems to be more of a series of events than a straight-line story like No. 6, and aimed at a little younger of an audience.

I thought the ending was happy enough in itself, hell I was bracing myself for Nezumi to die since pretty early on. Asano was nice to us. But yeah, I can imagine Shion being a total wreck for quite a while after that, not being with 2 of the 3 most important people in his life. The epilogue was a nice way of showing us that he's managed to mature and move on a bit.

Aah, Ran is something I tend to forget the existence of. Asano's novels are almost all categorized as children's literature and unlike No.6 this one actually is one. I'm not too interested, but it is indeed the next most accessible Asano work.

"But they'll meet again for sure, because they're each other's most important person."
You made me cry. Thank you for this.
I need more. Please Asano, we need volume ten. I'm begging you.
I love Nezumi and Shion's relationship. I love that we can't describe it in one word. I love their pure relationship so much but I want it to develop into something further too. I think Nezumi and Shion will be my OTP forever. They gave me so many beautiful feelings.

Thank you so much for everything ♥

Ahah, admittedly I borrowed that thought from somewhere else, but there's no better way to phrase it. ;w;
Thanks for reading this long thing!

Your review~ ♥ Thank you for all your effort, too!

I, for some reason... don't really need that epi-epilogue. Sure it would be nice, but I'm one of those convinced that, while it's sad Shion has to spend at least two/three years waiting alone, you're right, they need this break. And he'll come back anyway so it's all good. I just can't imagine Nezumi walking out on Shion forever, not after all they've been through. (And hey everyone and their mother is making their own version of the reunion so we can read those too, lol.)

About the characters: as much as I love Shion and Nezumi (OTP FOR THE AGES Y'ALL) Safu and Inukashi just might have stolen my heart.

There's so little of Safu in the books, but what we do see is incredibly endearing to me: strong will, some social awkwardness, quirky personality, bluntness and honesty, quick smarts, courage, a deep and abiding love. ♥ I adore how Shion describes her in the novels, "as strong and beautiful as a flying bird." She had me eating out of her hand from her first appearance in the anime when she decked the dumb boys who made fun of her presentation.

Inukashi is just the boss of everything ever. Even in her moments of vulnerability. Even her namelessness is freaking awesome.

Back to our boys--Nezumi's backstory will ALWAYS be hilarious. It's guilt-inducing when a massacre can't be taken seriously, but then ~♪ let me sing for you the song of my people ♪~ pfffft</i>. Same for Shion, after his umpteenth spiel about Nezumi's beautiful gorgeous brilliant dawn-like ocean-like grey eyes... BRB cannot stop the LOLS. If we make a No. 6 drinking game with this we'd all die of liver failure halfway through.

I am a horrible person. ;___; HONEST I STILL LOVE THEM DESPITE THAT. As I love this series, flaws and all.

I suppose I just want to see a "happily ever after" scene from the author herself, even if it'll be cheesy as hell. But yeah, for now I'll just endlessly indulge in the fan comics. ;;

Nice to see someone paying attention to the girls so much! I like that all the girls in this series are strong in some way or another, even though Safu didn't get to show much of it.

AHAH I had the exact same thoughts about the drinking game with Shion's mind wandering off into Nezumi's dazzling eyes. I was already sick of it with the parts I translated, which is probably 1/500th of the total. I'd die of liver failure much sooner.

It's thanks to places like pixiv that I can make fun of this series. But that just means I love it all the more. <3

I really wish I could understand Japanese, the better to find all those lulzy fanarts on pixiv. Like Shion going SEIZON SENRYAKUUUUUUU and stuff. ;____;

I've loved your review almost like I've loved No.6 <3
And I completely agree with your explanation of the "end".
And I want an epilogue-epilogue too! Please sensei!!!
Thank you~

Thank you~ <3
Hopefully Asano will give in to fan demands someday... hopefully. ;;

You're not the only one who think's Shion and Nezumi's relationship should be stay as a platonic, undescribable one. And yes, they need time away from eachother in the end. To sort out their feelings and priorities. I feel both of them should wait till they're more mature (emotionally) before they see eachother again.

I'm probably one of the 5 people left that think so, but yeah.
5 person? Whose that 5 person? XD Well one of them is definitely you, me and could add another friend of mine who thinks the same too haha.

And yes it gets really annoying when Shion suddenly jumps to Nezumi's eyes narration instead out of nowhere. I can't remember how many times I said "AGAIN?! OMGSTOPITYOU DX" =w=

It's been a fun ride indeed. You should try reading Baccano, it's incredible I assure you. I don't think any/much writers can write crazy stories like Ryohgo Narita.

No long-arse comment this time because everything is so agreeable lol/and I'm back to uni life sobs.

Well, at the risk of sounding like a bitter novel era advocate - before the anime started there ware absolutely no porn, shipping tags, or fumuke tags on pixiv. I just wonder how many of those artists are still left ahah.

Seriouslyyyy. Don't strain yourself, Shion.

Aah, Baccano is one of my favorite anime. The only reason I haven't read the novels is because B-T is slow with their translations, and I prefer reading in order so I'm still waiting for them to finish vol 2 and 3, so eehh.

Thanks for reading my hella long rambles!

Not much definitely haha

I think you can read "Children of the Bottle" because it feels kind of stand-alone :)
And Drugs and Domino's because it involves similar plot to the anime anyway.

Excellent review. You really understand Nezumi and Sion's personality. You understand their relationship. And you have this incredible gift to put your thoughts into words. You actually managed to explain a relationship that cant be explained. I applaud you for that.

My No.6 obsession still remains intact even after the bad taste the anime left behind. I've simply never read anything like No.6 before. Nothing like their relationship. And I'm a true book freak so that's SOMETHING. I spend my everyday in a haze with my thoughts revolving around and about Nezumi and Sion.

Thank you for the review. And as I have said before, for everything you did here with your summaries and translations. You have even helped me get over my Writer's Block.

I'll love you forever ^_^
Have a nice day <3

brb with a coherent comment. I'm lost for words..

I hope you don't mind me dropping by again...

Wow...just wow - I really loved your analysis of Shion and Nezumi's relationship (that's where I was leaning too, but I still want to read the novels before thinking about it much more. You also really captured all the ambivalent feelings I had about the anime in your earlier review, but I figure it's really a bit too late to comment on that post...), especially the parts about how they're each other's most important person and how they need some time apart to sort themselves out (though I'm simplifying it a bit too much...orz...alright, back to essays...).

Thank you for sharing all your thoughts after all those long summaries too!

Sorry! really late comment but the suspicion is killing me

When will the new chapter 22 of the manga get released ? I'm dying for it to continue I really can't see it end up like that! I've been waiting since years ..
Really thanks!
And it's my favourite manga to be honest it brought many tears to my eyes! I want it to continue so badly.

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