Article first published as Manga Review: Chi’s Sweet Home Volume Five by Kanata Konami on Blogcritics.
Chi’s Sweet Home Volume Five is a manga by Kanata Konami, and it was published in North America by Vertical, Inc. in 2011. Chi’s Sweet Home is “flipped,” which means that it reads more like an American book than a traditional Japanese manga. Another usual aspect about this series is the fact that all of the pages are in color; typically, manga will either be all black and white, or only have a few color pages mixed in with the black and white ones. I don’t see a rating printed anywhere on this volume, but I would personally recommend Chi’s Sweet Home for all audiences.
Chi’s Sweet Home shares the adventures of a kitten named Chi; she was separated from her mother, and was found and taken in by a family. At the beginning of the series, the family lived in an apartment complex that did not allow the tenants to have pets; however, during Volume Four, the family moved into another apartment complex that allows the tenants to have pets.
During Volume Five, Chi finally learns how to use the cat door to let herself outside. With this newfound freedom, Chi begins to explore the neighborhood. As the volume progresses, Chi begins wandering farther and farther away from the apartment complex.
During one of her excursions, Chi is seen by a calico cat who recognizes Chi from the time before she was separated from her mother. The calico cat tries to arrange a reunion between mother and child, and Chi ends up having a rather unexpected reunion with an old friend.
While this manga series may have a simplistic art and story, this simplicity works because Chi the kitten is the focus of the story. Since Chi is still very young, her worldview is going to be much simpler than that of an older character. This simplicity also makes Chi’s Sweet Home accessible to younger readers who are just starting to wade into manga.
Chi’s Sweet Home Volume Five is a quick read, but it’s an enjoyable story. As a reader, I find myself riveted to Chi and wanting to know what will happen to her next. As an older reader, one thing I liked about this particular volume is the inclusion of a map at the back of the volume; this map shows where various locations in the series are, as well as locations where major events took place. This map helps the reader to truly understand just how small Chi’s world really is.
Chi’s Sweet Home is a manga series that will appeal to both younger readers and to older readers who are cat lovers.
I wrote this review after reading a copy of Chi’s Sweet Home Volume Five that I checked out through the King County Library System.