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Rojica and Rakkasei

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Natively: Level 21 (but only rated by me so far)

Summary

Rojica and Rakkasei lead a cozy countryside life, exploring their world’s whimsical, fascinating creatures. Through their scholarly friend Isaac, they learn about many bizarre artifacts and the ancient civilization that once inhabited their planet. A vinyl record and a twister mat are just some of the items with mysterious purposes!

When there is nothing else to do, Rojica and Rakkasei investigate their strange neighbors, like the secretive Shi-san, the off-putting and incoherent Mrs. Grace (who terrifies Rakkasei) and Mrs. Massu, the kind old lady from next door.

Adventures are had, new friends are made, and every day they discover something new. There are a lot of things that the two still don’t know about the place that they live in…

Availability

Physical: Amazon | CD Japan
Digital: Kindle | BookWalker | Kobo

Personal Opinion

I currently have only two things that are rated 5/5 on Natively - one was part of my last proposal, and this is the other. I absolutely adore “Rojica and Rakkasei”. It’s easily the best thing I read in Japanese so far, and definitely one of my favourite mangas in any language.

On first glance, this is a surreal comedy, and sure, there are a lot absurd and funny moments, and there’s a sense of adventure and discovery. But I was completely taken by surprise by some other parts of the manga that I really didn’t expect and that give it more depth, and quite a few emotional and memorable moments that are staying with me.

More than anything, I’m suggesting this because I need to talk about these moments.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • A cute art style.
  • Has it all: lighthearted silliness, emotional moments, wholesomeness, and the occasional jab of darkness lurking beneath it all.
  • No furigana. (You can use your kanji knowledge!)
  • Has 3 volumes and is finished (so enough for an off-shoot club that doesn’t go forever).
  • Volume 1 is still complete without any cliffhangers, so no need to read the other volumes unless you want more.

Cons

  • The darker parts can get surprisingly dark. (Which is a pro for me, but might be a con for others.)
  • No furigana. (If you have no kanji knowledge like me, you have to use a tool like KanjiTomo or the vocab sheet.)

Trigger Warnings (major spoilers)

  • death

Pictures

First Three Pages of Chapter One




More chapter one pages, including one with more text at the end







Difficulty Poll

How much effort would you need to read this book?

  • 1 - No effort at all
  • 2 - Minimal effort
  • 3 - Moderate effort
  • 4 - Substantial effort
  • 5 - So much effort my head might explode :exploding_head:
  • I don’t know

0 voters

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