耳をすませば 📚 | Week 8 Discussion

Chapter 4 (second half)

Start Date: 2022-10-28T15:00:00Z
Last Week: Chapter 4 (first half)

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This week, it’s through to the end!

Vocabulary List

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My last few thoughts on this story!

And there we have it, the end of the story!

The seeing the sunrise scene felt very convenient that it happened, but then that was actually acknowledged in the story. That line that was about fate. That is the way to do an unbelievable scene: make the characters acknowledge it too and that’s it. ^^

I throughly enjoyed this ride.

I feel like I didn’t quite follow what happened with Yuuko. Did she confess to Sugimura? Or did she talk about maybe doing it with Shizuku? That somehow it would be good/all right to be rejected? Hopefully someone can enlighten me.

Sugimura feels a bit like a loose end to me. Like we ended the arc of his confessing, but how did their relationship look after that? Was it okay? But neither he nor Yuuko were more than side characters with arcs that intersected our main characters. So it feels okay to be left a bit vague.

One wonders for the future though. Two sisters dating two brothers, what if/when one of the couples break up? Awkward. :joy: Although considering the age of everyone, probably both relationships will end, so should be fine in the long term.

Though to be fair, I’ve had a fine relationship with most of my exes. Perhaps after the emotions of love have receded from the one who got dumped. So perhaps they will all be fine even if one couple survives for a looooong time. ^^

Now I’m just wildly speculating. :joy: And now I get to go watch Whisper of the Heart, and maybe I’ll see about seeing the live action sequel when possible. :smiley:

Also, I’d be totally up for reading the remaining material that is part of some versions, like the extra short story and even the essay+interview+atogaki since I’ll probably try to read those myself at some point. :slight_smile:

Overall thoughts

I liked this, though I couldn’t help comparing it with the anime, which to me feels like a more fleshed-out and well-structured version of the story (unusually: often the time constraints of a film mean it has to drop stuff and I end up preferring the original source material, but here the source manga was pretty short).

My favourite part is definitely Shizuku’s facial expressions. I also like the way it’s not purely a romance story – there’s a theme about finding out what you want to do with your life too.

Re Yuuko: she says that she has decided to tell Sugimura she loves him (言ってみることにした) – she first thought that just being friends would be OK, but has decided that doesn’t work, so she’s going to tell him – even if he rejects her that will still be better than her not saying anything.


Thanks for a clarification on Yuuko! Every time I see ことに[VERB] I can’t remember which is which and sometimes I can’t be bothered to look up and just hope the rest lets me know which one it was. :sweat_smile:


The way I remember it is that ことにする is when you actively do something (i.e. make a decision), and ことになる is when stuff just turns out that way without you doing anything particularly…


I agree, I think the manga is very cute but I like that the anime spends more time fleshing out the theme about finding out what you want to do with your life and putting in the work required to get there. I felt there wasn’t really enough room in this single volume to explore that fully.

Still glad I read it, though! Some really nice moments overall and I find the characters very sympathetic.


I liked the ending and the story as a whole. Very wholesome for a change in comparison to what I normally read; I was actually surprised the story kept me hooked until the end, it just shows that it’s a great manga. I liked 雫’s facial expression very much as well!

I also felt like the dialogue got easier at the end but maybe I just got accustomed to the writing style. And, I’m really glad to have finished my second book club (and the first “beginner” one) with you guys, it was very fun! :partying_face:

I want to watch the anime now too and I’m already looking forward to the next book club haha


I must confess to being slightly irked that the LearnNatively entry for this title, despite showing the image of the version which has the short story, only tracks up to the completion of the main story. :joy:

Ah, well, not everything I read is tracked there, to begin with, so it’s not a big deal.

Overall impression

I’m definitely with @pm215, the anime feels a little more fleshed out than the manga, but I still enjoyed reading this. I definitely understand why it’s considered such a beloved classic --it’s sweet and refreshing without being heavy-handed and trite with the romance.

That said, it’s also a manga where, even if there weren’t a short story, I would be fine leaving things where they are at. Oftentimes when I finish a series, I find myself feeling like I want to spend more time with the characters, or with the setting, but this wraps up neatly enough and in a way that I would be perfectly happy to set it down and move along. This is not a criticism, by the way; it’s actually super nice to have something like that for once. :joy:

Regardless, I’ll definitely read through everything that remains in the version of the book I’ve picked up. Have you decided if you are going to post a separate thread or anything for the short story, @ChristopherFritz? It might be small enough to have it share the home thread with the main club and just add a chapter thread (maybe with the reading times split up a bit, since it might be a bit long for one week for some readers), rather than go through the hassle of setting up a whole separate home thread for it. :sweat_smile:

Spoilers for info in the interview with the author

One of the things that comes up in the author interview/conversation is that the manga was actually cut short because it wasn’t popular with readers! The manga industry can be pretty brutal about canning series that don’t get good scores in reader surveys. So part of the pacing of the manga and the way some of the sub-threads get tied off a bit abruptly is because they started off expecting to be able to write more chapters than they ended up with. The author’s take was that shoujo manga readers read the genre because they want full-on romance stories, and something like this that’s a bit romance and a bit figuring-out-how-to-live just wasn’t what they were reading Ribon for… (This was their second published manga, and the first one was a big hit that ran for ten volumes, so I wonder if this one getting canned so quickly was a bit of a shock.)

The anime has the luxury of being able to plan the whole story out from the start, so it’s much easier to get the pacing right.


Done :smiley:
Fell behind a couple of times, but luckily I managed to finish on time. I quite enjoyed this book.

Final Thoughts

Definitely a little shorter than recent book clubs, but that’s not a bad thing, this book was short but sweet. I actually enjoyed it a lot, and I agree with @pm215, the facial expressions were very amusing lol.

I quite enjoyed the ending too, had a nice warm and fuzzy feeling to it. Now that I think about it, I don’t remember ever properly watching the sun rise. Perhaps I should do that at some point. I’m sure Richmond Park has the perfect spot for that, but I don’t know if they’d let me in that early… XD

Onwards with the next book!


I’ve been a bit busy with this and that lately and this slipped being at the top of my mind, but I definitely want to put a thread for anyone who wants to read. I’ll get together a poll or two on the home thread.


うん! 私はこれで終わりです!!