The Synopsis and Appeal of the Anime “Natsume’s Book of Friends”



Since he was a child, Takashi Natsume has been able to see spirits. He inherited the “Book of Friends” from his grandmother, a book in which she had written the names of spirits as a sign of their servitude. Since then, he has been pursued by spirits. Along with his self-proclaimed bodyguard spirit, Nyanko-sensei, Natsume decided to return the names to the spirits. In doing so, he encounters various spirits and learns about their hearts. Through these encounters and partings with spirits, and the kind thoughts of gentle people, Natsume has gradually gained many precious things…



Takashi Natsume
The protagonist of this work. He has had the ability to see spirits (Ayakashi) that ordinary people cannot see since he was born. He lost his mother shortly after he was born, and by the time he became aware of his surroundings, his father had also passed away. Since then, he has been moving around among his relatives. He had no knowledge of spirits, and because he could see things that others could not, he was regarded as an unstable child who often behaved strangely, and there was even a time when he was temporarily placed in a facility.

Originally a spirit known as Madara, who had a graceful appearance, he was trapped in a beckoning cat and eventually became accustomed to that form. He lives with Natsume as a pet cat while serving as Natsume’s bodyguard, under the promise that he will receive the Book of Friends when Natsume dies. He is a whimsical but reliable presence.

The charm of this work

The setting of the story is a nature-rich countryside town with many mountains and forests around. In fact, the model is Hitoyoshi City, Kumamoto Prefecture, the hometown of the author, Yuki Midorikawa, and many landscapes such as actual shrines and bridges appear. There are many places that have been around for a long time, and it’s not strange for spirits to come out from anywhere, but it’s not creepy at all, and the anime beautifully expresses it nostalgically along with the changing seasons.

Even though it’s a spirit anime, “Natsume’s Book of Friends” doesn’t have intense battles every time, and it feels more like watching a human drama. Rather than getting hooked after watching one episode, it’s more like you gradually get into it as you watch it casually. There is a main storyline, but basically, each episode is often self-contained, so I think it’s a work that you can enjoy from any episode. If you don’t know it yet and are interested, please take a look.

The series of “Natsume’s Book of Friends”

SeriesTitleNumber of Episodes
Season 1Natsume’s Book of Friends13 episodes in total
Season 2Continued Natsume’s Book of Friends13 episodes in total
Season 3Natsume’s Book of Friends Three13 episodes in total
Season 4Natsume’s Book of Friends Four13 episodes in total
Season 5Natsume’s Book of Friends Five11 episodes in total
Season 6Natsume’s Book of Friends Six11 episodes in total

Anime “Natsume’s Book of Friends” 15th Anniversary PV

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