The Quiet Joy Of Sharing a Meal

My Roommate is a Cat Post Title

My Roommate is a Cat Episode 10 Review

There’s not much to say about this episode of My Roommate is a Cat. Subaru is exhausted after pulling all nighters to finish writing but Hiroto’s sister and her friend come to play. In the process they teach Subaru how to cook a meal for Haru and the remainder of the episode is Subaru first trying to buy the ingredients for the meal and then prepare it before we flip to Haru’s point of view.

My Roommate is a Cat Episode 10

If you are watching this because you enjoy Subaru’s awkward nature and the play between cat and human, this episode will be great fun. The payoff when the two eat together at the end is well worth it. However, there’s little else to this episode that would really stand out.

My Roommate is a Cat Episode 10

I do find Haru’s perspective is starting to wear a little thin with her constant worrying about Subaru not eating. Admittedly, it is a legitimate concern but it is starting to become a bit repetitive. There was very little added through seeing Haru’s perspective this week and the end of the episode felt a bit weak because of it.

My Roommate is a Cat Episode 10

Still, seeing Subaru stumped at the grocery store and Hiroto coming to his rescue was amusing enough and the final scene of cat and human, fed and happy, is certainly heart warming enough. This series remains cute enough and entertaining for those who relate to owning a cat (or being owned by a cat) but episodes like this one show the decidedly one note nature of the series.

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Karandi James
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SWORD ART ONLINE THE MOVIE – ORDINAL SCALE WALL SCROLL: ASUNA THE FLASH
	SWORD ART ONLINE THE MOVIE - ORDINAL SCALE WALL SCROLL: ASUNA THE FLASH

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Natsume’s Book of Friends Volume 11 Manga Review

Natsume's Book of Friends Volume 11 Cover

It is always great when a story remains consistently this great and volume 11 of Natsume’s Book of Friends maintains everything that has been good about the series so far. While we move away from the exorcists to focus more on Natsume’s growing group of human friends and to face Natsume’s past, this volume continues to be a compelling read and fleshes out Natsume’s character and that of his friends Taki and Tanuma.

Chatpers 42 and 43: Sealed

The first story deals with Tanuma and Natsume arriving at Taki’s home during a rain shower. After some pleasantries they end up assisting her in cleaning out a store room and in the process Natsume accidentally breaks a seal on a yokai that Taki’s grandfather accidentally imprisoned. It isn’t exactly looking for a pleasant conversation.

Natsume's Book of Friends Volume 11

This was great because it does put the three of these human characters together in a way that hasn’t really been done previously. Natsume is friends with Tanuma and friends with Taki, but previously the two of them have had little interaction. As the two characters who know the most about Natsume it is great to see them together here and trying to help Natsume as he is dealing with the yokai.

Natsume's Book of Friends Volume 11

We also learn more about Taki’s grandfather and the way the yokai responded to him. While he couldn’t see yokai as Natsume can, he was very much obsessed with them and gather quite a crowd around him during his life. These yokai ultimately decide to help out in this story and that saves the day. Taki thanking them was an adorable moment even though she also can’t see them without the aid of the circle and generally speaking they aren’t willing to step in it.

Chapters 44 – 46: Long Way Home

Any of the stories that give us more insight into Natsume’s lonely childhood are really fantastic and this story gives us a double hit. Firstly we see another family he stayed with previously and how well that went… And we also see Natsume dealing with the sale of his family home and his final goodbye to it. Throw in a yokai that tormented him as a child and you have a really great story.

What really sells this is how much readers have come to love Natsume over the previous en volumes. If this story had come in earlier, it may not have had the impact it does here. But with Natsume where he is on his character journey, this seemed like the perfect moment for some reflection and facing the past and it was handled beautifully.

Nyanko-Sensei is of course along for the ride and so we get a little more of the relationship between Nyanko and Natsume, but the focus is unmistakably on Natsume’s growth.

All and all, volume 11 did not disappoint and I am read to sink my teeth into volume 12.

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Karandi James
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Free Delivery on all Books at the Book Depository

Dreaming of the Past and Protecting the Present

My Roommate is a Cat Post Title

My Roommate is a Cat Episode 8 Review

I’ve been really enjoying getting to know Subaru and seeing him soften a little from his original stand-offish character while still remaining essentially true to himself. He still dislikes noise in his house and people who won’t leave him alone but he’s also come to appreciate those who look out for him. It is a nice progression of his character and one that has been enjoyable to be along for. Episode 8 of My Roommate is a Cat continues this development by taking a bit of a look at how young Subaru grew into the author he is today.

My Roommate is a Cat Episode 8 Subaru and Haru

Though, I’ll point out making someone choose between saving a cat or a book from landing in water is just cruel. At the same time, I assume my cat is smart enough that if she doesn’t want to land in the water to jump to the shore so I’d probably save the book. That and my cat likes playing in water when it is really hot (which is a good five months of the year) so she probably wouldn’t mind that much. Winter would be a different story.

My Roommate is a Cat Episode 8

As usual the episode flips between Subaru’s perspective and Haru’s with Haru’s part being quite adorable this week as we see the stand-offish affection a cat holds for their human. Haru perfectly embodies this and while her mannerisms may not be identical, most cat owners should see a bit of their feline in her antics.

My Roommate is a Cat Episode 8 Haru

All and all, this one remains a pleasant viewing experience and I’m finding myself enjoying it more and more each week. I would like to see Subaru get a little bit more of a push to deal with others but I’ve honestly loved seeing him grow so far throughout this series.

My Roommate is a Cat Episode 9 Review

It is time for Subaru’s book signing and as expected when it comes to actually doing it he suddenly realises just how far out of his comfort zone he’s decided to step. On that note though, Haru, left at home, is freaking out because her human started acting strange (was dressing in a suit) and then left for a day (usually never goes out).

My Roommate is a Cat Episode 9 Haru

Unusually, the story starts from Haru’s perspective before we see Subaru at the book signing before returning home, where we flip again back to Haru’s perspective. It works well though in framing the story and Haru’s tirade and mass destruction of tissues and books is again something as a cat owner I recognise. My cat tends to take out photos and ornaments when I leave her alone too long, though she usually waits until I return, makes sure I can see her, and then deliberately knocks them flying off a shelf (okay, my cat has a mean streak when ignored).

My Roommate is a Cat Episode 9 Haru

Despite enjoying Haru’s moments which are cute and touching as we see her fretting about being left alone, Subaru facing his readers at the signing is the stronger part of the episode. From panicking over signing crooked to worrying he didn’t thank his first readers, to reaching out to them, we see him really pushing himself personally.

My Roommate is a Cat Episode 9 Subaru

I was expecting it, but Oukami’s appearance and realisation that Subaru is actually the author her brother likes is pretty adorable and yet another good character moment for Subaru as he tries to convey his feelings in words. While his shouting thank-you after her is a little over the top, the scene is otherwise really nicely conveyed.

My Roommate is a Cat Episode 9 Subaru

All and all, another fun episode with Haru and Subaru and while they aren’t together for a lot of this episode, that allows them both to grow as characters.

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Karandi James
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NENDOROID NO. 1097 LAID-BACK CAMP: AOI INUYAMA
	NENDOROID NO. 1097 LAID-BACK CAMP: AOI INUYAMA

Natsume’s Book of Friends Volume 10 Manga Review

Natsume's Book of Friends Volume 10 Cover

Natori is back and that always makes things complicated.

Volume 10 of Natsume’s Book of Friends is divided into two stories. The first covers chapters 37 and 38 and is called ‘False Friend’ and the second, covered in chapters 39 – 41 is ‘The Harvest Festival’. Both of these stories appeared in the anime and were both stories I really enjoyed so there were very few surprises to be found here, but once again the manga brings that little something extra to each of these character and made the experience of reading it feel rewarding.

Natsume's Book of Friends Chapter 39
The characters are still absolutely beautiful to look at in this volume and I love the chapter title pages.

I did struggle for a bit trying to find a theme that connected these stories. Ultimately I decided it was about misunderstandings. False Friend has Natsume’s motives being questioned by a guy who used to tease Natsume but now needs his help and The Harvest Festival really looks at how well Natsume and Natori understand each other and what they are trying to accomplish. All and all, volume ten was a worthy addition to this series.

Chapters 37 – 38 False Friend

This story introduces us to Shibata who used to go to school with Natsume and always believed he was a liar. In this story he has sought out Natsume because he has a weird feeling about a girl he likes and somehow he suspects she might not be all she seems. With no one else to rely on, he drags Natsume into it in order to determine if she is human or not.

Natsume's Book of Friends Volume 10

The story itself is pretty standard here with Natsume struggling to differentiate between human and yokai and when he finally does determine the truth, he is not believed by the human who asked him for help in the first place. It is a wonderful reminder that even though Natsume is very protected by the circle of friends he has made since moving in with the Fujiwaras, the world at large still won’t believe in him and there are those who will still judge him. I really liked how they showed the emotional turmoil not being believed again put Natsume through in this story.

In the end, Shibata does come to believe but he’s still a thorny reminder of what Natsume went through as a child and a character who brings more conflicted feelings with him.

Chapters 39 – 41 The Harvest Festival

Natori has been asked to deal with a god on a mountain and is told to take drastic action if necessary. Of course, given the limited time he has before the Harvest Festival is meant to take place and he fact that there is little to no chance of him actually locating the other sealed god and resolving the situation peacefully, the other exorcists are more of less pushing the job of facing a god of pestilence onto Natori. It is another one of those rare glimpses into the world of the exorcists and no matter how you look at it, they seem really shady sometimes and their motives are always a little bit questionable. No wonder Natori always comes across as a little hard to read.

Natsume's Book of Friends Volume 10 Natori

However, it wouldn’t be a Natsume story if Natsume wasn’t somehow caught up in events. Even before Natori goes to the mountain, the sealed gods underlings have recruited Natsume to pretend to be the god that has been sealed in order to allow them time to continue searching for their master and to prevent famine and all manner of catastrophe occurring.

Once again we see Natsume and Natori coming at the same problem from different perspectives with Natsume only wishing to locate and release the sealed god and Natori willing to give that up as futile if he must and take more direct action. At the same time, Natsume wants to trust and rely on Natori, and Natori for his part doesn’t really seem to want to entirely crush Natsume’s view. The way they walk on eggshells around their differences really shows how much they value the relationship they have created even if they don’t always see things eye to eye.

Anyway, it is another great story and another great bit of world and character building just making this volume of Natsume another superb read. I very much recommend giving it a go.

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If you’re interested in reading Natsume’s Book of Friends Volume 10 it is available on the Book Depository.

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Karandi James
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Natsume’s Book of Friends, Vol. 10
Natsume's Book of Friends, Vol. 10

The Sickly Sweet With A Lot Of Heart

Endro - Post Title Image

Endro Episode 6 Review

I’m wondering if Endro really did just make me like a character that I’ve really not felt much connection to previously and did it through using a tired old character got sick trope. And yeah, it really did. This episode I really enjoyed finding out more about Mao and her life as a demon lord before the hero’s botched attempt at defeating her sent her back in time. It was also nice seeing her appreciate her students and their care of her.

Endro Episode 6 Mao

There isn’t a whole lot to say about this pastel filled episode as the story is literally just Mao gets sick and in typical fashion has literally nothing in her house to eat and begins feeling sorry for herself when the hero’s party comes by and goes about cleaning up her house and preparing her a meal. It is all just sickly sweet and excessively optimistic and yet it manages to nicely round out Mao’s character. While we didn’t learn all that much new about her, this episode made it much easier to connect with her as a character and that was something I was kind of missing before.

Endro Episode 6 Mao

Though, it really is evidence that you don’t need to reinvent the wheel to make something worth watching. While there isn’t really a single original point in this episode, they manage to deliver this fairly standard plot line in a way that makes it feel worth while and entertaining.

Endro Episode 6 Mao

That said, kind of hoping for a bit more adventure in next week’s episode, but I kind of feel like this was one of the stronger mid-season episodes I’ve watched this week.

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Karandi James
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How to Draw Digital Manga and Anime
How to Draw Digital Manga and Anime

Goblin Slayer Volume 4 Light Novel Review

Goblin Slayer Volume 4 Cover Image

The party are all doing their own thing in this volume and in the end we get small vignettes of characters living in this world.

While the first three Goblin Slayer books have jumped around a little bit between adventures and quests and some slice of life stuff, the fourth volume really does feel more like a collection of short stories loosely connected via the setting and the cast. Expect no epic goblin slaying antics in this one, as we follow Rookie Warrior and Apprentice Priestess into the sewers (a story that appeared in the anime much earlier on in the timeline), Goblin Slayer doing his solo goblin slaying thing, some shopping, drinking and other mundane tasks, and the defeat of a necromancer.

Goblin Slayer - Rookie Warrior and Apprentice Priestess

If that all seems horribly unfocused (and it didn’t even cover everything) then you have a fair idea of the reading experience. I found this volume worked best when I read a chapter (or story) and then stopped for the day, picking it up later to read another story. There was no real flow or connection between sections but each story on its own was kind of interesting enough.

While Goblin Slayer features in a number of the stories, there are plenty of moments for other characters, both major ones like Priestess and High Elf Archer, and more background characters like Heavy Knight, get some time to be developed as characters. It all adds to the sense that this is a world, real and whole and these characters don’t just cease to exist when their adventures end. Their lives continue off-screen or off-page so to speak and this volume very much feels like a glimpse at some of that down time (and not so down time when you see what Goblin Slayer is still getting up to).

Goblin Slayer - Yep, he's slaying goblins
Is this down time?

Now, when you get the end and read the afterward, the scattered feeling of the book really makes sense as the author explains that this collection of stories take place largely between volumes 1 and 2 or volumes 2 and 3. So at least that disconnected feel was deliberate.

This one I’d recommend if you are really into the setting of Goblin Slayer and would love more of the support cast. However, if you are wanting the grand adventure, I would simply skip this one and head to volume 5 (review coming soon) because honestly it is a much stronger narrative and one that is really exciting to read (can’t wait to review it). I had fun with this because I do really enjoy the world of Goblin Slayer but again, this wasn’t the greatest of reads as a whole.

Goblin Slayer - High Elf Archer and Guild Girl

That said, I’d love to know your thoughts if you’ve read this one, and there are definitely some fun stories in here, so if you enjoy sharp, short stories featuring these characters this one will probably entertain.

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Karandi James
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Goblin Slayer Vol. 4 (light novel)
Goblin Slayer Vol. 4 (light novel)

The Awkward Cat Belongs With An Awkward Human

My Roommate is a Cat Post Title

My Roommate is a Cat Episode 6 Review

There’s been no doubt that Subaru is a fairly socially awkward human being (or rather he has never tried to engage socially so hasn’t the faintest idea of how to do so). And they do say that owners and their pets resemble each other. I found it hilarious this week in My Roommate is a Cat where Subaru is sitting facing Nana’s brother in awkward silence and Haru, is in the shot staring awkwardly at Nana’s cats. While we later see what was going on from Haru’s perspective, the parallel between Subaru and Haru has never been clearer.

My Roommate is a Cat Episode 6

That said, I found this episode a little less engaging than normal, and part of that is because at only eight minutes in we go to Haru’s perspective. And while Haru’s thoughts on what is happening in the apartment are kind of sweet, we get an extended flash back of Haru and her siblings learning to live on the streets. The thing is, that we’d already pieced most of this together from existing flashbacks so this kind of felt like filler and it dominate most of the second half of the episode.

My Roommate is a Cat Episode 6 Haru's siblings

It doesn’t stop Haru from being utterly adorable. She’s now giving Fuzzy from The Morose Mononokean a good run for being cutest character of the season and I have a long standing love of Fuzzy. Apparently adorable is enough because while very little else of note occurs in the second half, I didn’t really dislike it.

My Roommate is a Cat Episode 6
Not sure you can recommend a novel by saying, “This one has a cat in it.”

One human development is that we learn Nana and her brother are both reading Subaru’s story as it is published in a magazine and it is perhaps his first time meeting people who read his work. Unable to figure out how to respond he ends up fleeing, but there is definitely a slow change occurring in his personality and I’m looking forward to seeing if that goes anywhere.

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Karandi James
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NENDOROID NO. 1088 HETALIA WORLD STARS: USA
NENDOROID NO. 1088 HETALIA WORLD STARS: USA