Monday, April 25, 2011

Fruits Basket Vol. 2 by Natsuki Takaya

Book Jacket

A family with an ancient curse...and the girl who will change their lives forever.

Ever since Tohru Honda discovered the Zodiac secret of the Sohma clan, her eyes have been opened to a world of magic and wonder.  But with such a great secret comes great responsibility.  When her best friends Hana-chan and Uo-chan come to the Sohma house for a sleepover, Tohru has her work cut out for her keeping the "Cat" in the bag and the "Dog" on a leash.


Why do manga book jackets only reveal the plot of the first chapter?  Strange, and a bit unfortunate for my blog's purposes, because much bigger and awesomer things happen in volume 2 than a mere sleepover.

The first volume was mostly light-hearted and sitcomy.  The second volume is still very much a comedy, but there are hints of darkness as Akito, the head of the family, is slowly revealed.  The curse is not just fun and games--it's an actually curse.  Hatori's story is explored in this volume, and while I found it more moving in the anime (I actually cried, and that's the episode that had me hooked), it's still a very beautiful and depressing story in the manga. 

This volume also includes one of my all-time favorite ideas of....all time.  Tohru, ever the optimist, hopes that Kyo and Yuki will see their own good qualities instead of being jealous of each other.  She likens it to rice balls that look plain on the front but have a bit of fruit in the back.  Maybe we also have good qualities stuck to our back--others can see them, but we cannot.  If we would just tell each other about those hidden qualities, maybe everyone would be a little happier and more confident. 

This volume has fun and an undercurrent of drama to come. 

Four out of five hearts of snow.

Release Date:  April 2004
Reading Level:  Grade 7+
Where In Dunlap Public Library's Collection: GRAPHIC TAK

Don't believe me?  Check out these reviews of Fruits Basket Vol. 2:

All-Consuming Books
The Koolaid Mom

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