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Natsume Yujincho NA Title: Natsume Book of Friends Creator: Yuki MIDORIKAWA Genre: Slice-of-life, Folklore I've been a follower of this title since the manga first came out in 2005. It tells of a teenage boy, Takashi Natsume, who grew up being passed around distant relatives after having lost both his parents by the time he was 4 or 5. Having the ability to see things others can't like his deceased grandmother, Reiko, he was shunned by all those who were tasked to protect him and was without friends due to his "mental and emotional instability" and "propensity for lying". When unpacking his belongings after his latest move, he found among them an old book full off strange etchings that spell out strange names and came to realize that it was a book full off yokai names that his grandmother had put together. As holding on to these names equates to holding the lives of these yokai in his hands, he goes about returning them with the (reluctant?) help of Madara a.k.a. Nyanko-sensei. The manga art is roughish but beautiful and the anime has an absolutely amazing soundtrack with fantastic opening and ending themes, all with wonderful lyrics to match. This here is the first ED theme, my favorite out of all the incredible themes. The story is poignant and meandering and full of meaningul ponderings without being the slightest bit preachy. It's got me straight in the heart too many times to count now and I always look forward to a new chapter of the manga and a new episode of the anime (when it's running). The title has since spanned into a sizeable franchise in Japan while remaining on the banks of mainstream. The manga is still ongoing (20++ volumes, all of which I proudly own) and the anime currently spans six seasons (at 11-13 episodes per season), with the latest season still ongoing. It also has a couple of OVAs to its name. If you've never heard of this title, or even if you're not usually into manga and anime, please do give it a try because this transcends those borders. You won't regret it, I promise. I'm recommending it here cos this looks like a good place to do it for a title like this as it seems to me that it may run towards the taste of those drawn towards this lil' planet. (That and I just want to put another one of my favorite things into one place xD.) Other titles I absolutely adore: Mushishi; Mononoke