Natsume's Book of Friends: A delightful journey | AniMaiden'd

I have just finished watching a very charming anime series called Natsume's Book of Friends (Natsume Yujin-cho).

. This show has a very warm feeling to it and a very likable cast of characters.

It starts out with a young boy named Takashi Natsume who has a disconnected past from his immediate family. He inherits a strange book that was owned by his grandmother, Reiko Natsume. In this book, she had collected the names of all the youkai (spirits) she had met in her life. Reiko had forced them to give her their names so she could bind them in servitude to her.

Takashi is not comfortable with this and begins to give these names back to their owners. While doing this, he comes upon Madara, one of the youkai that was bound to his grandmother. Madara becomes a mentor and protector to Takashi. Madara does not not hide the fact that he is really interested in getting the Book of Friends for his own use. He is only protecting Takashi from other youkai that might kill Takashi before Madara can.

Madara, who is called Nyanko Sensei by Takashi, provides a humorous side kick in his disguise as a very chubby lucky cat. He is constantly eating and loves to drink too much sake.
He seems to be a very aloof cat only interested in his own comfort and entertainment – but when real trouble arises, he changes form into a much more formidable spirit and saves Takashi many times.

Each episode covers another adventure for Takashi and Nyanko Sensei as they meet more youkai and learn their stories. As the series progresses, we are shown small pieces of Takashi's past life and how he has moved from home to home without a real family.  We also learn more about his grandmother.  Both Takashi and his grandmother can see youkai.  This makes them different from everyone else and they have both  been outcasts as young children. 

This show moves forward with the lives of Takashi and his new youkai friends at a pace that allows us to see, in a very natural way, how Takashi grows and learns about friendship and family. We follow his discoveries about his own family and how he is not as alone now as he has believed he is.

Natsume's Book of Friends tells a very touching tale and does it gracefully and beautifully. You can watch is streaming at or get the DVDs from  

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