Embracing the Love for Karuta in “Chihayafuru”

Konnichiwa, it’s your Tokyo-based anime lover back again! Today, we’re delving into a series that’s stolen the hearts of countless fans around the world – “Chihayafuru”. What’s that? An anime about a traditional Japanese card game sounds boring? Oh, you couldn’t be more wrong, and I’m here to tell you why.

Chihayafuru Story Summary: More Than Just a Game

“Chihayafuru” is a slice of life sports anime that centers around Chihaya Ayase, a determined and passionate high school girl who dreams of becoming the best competitive karuta player in Japan. Karuta is a traditional Japanese card game that combines elements of poetry, memory, and speed, and Chihaya’s love for it was sparked by her childhood friend, Arata Wataya, a talented karuta player himself.

The story explores Chihaya’s journey as she navigates the competitive world of karuta, meeting a diverse range of opponents, deepening her skills, and building friendships along the way. But, it’s not just about karuta – the series also delves into the characters’ personal lives, relationships, and emotional growth, making it a deeply engaging watch.

Chihayafuru Characters: Vivid and Realistic

  1. Chihaya Ayase: The protagonist of the series, Chihaya is passionate, driven, and a little bit oblivious when it comes to matters outside of karuta. Her dedication to the game and her friends is truly inspiring.
  2. Taichi Mashima: Chihaya’s childhood friend who has been in love with her for years. He’s smart, kind, and a skilled karuta player, although he often struggles with feelings of insecurity and jealousy.
  3. Arata Wataya: The one who introduced Chihaya to the world of karuta. Arata is quiet and reserved, but his love for karuta is profound and contagious.

Summary of First 5 Books

The first five volumes of “Chihayafuru” set the groundwork for Chihaya’s journey. We see her transition from a young girl without a dream to a determined individual passionate about karuta. Alongside, we also witness the complex relationship dynamics between Chihaya, Taichi, and Arata, the development of Chihaya’s karuta club at school, and the emotional undertones that give depth to the story.

Chihayafuru Reading Order of Titles

“Chihayafuru” is a straightforward series, so you can follow the chronological order of the volumes. Each volume presents a new stage in Chihaya’s journey, whether it’s a karuta match, a personal development, or a relationship milestone.

My Personal Review/Reading Experience

I must confess, when I first heard of an anime centered around a traditional card game, I was skeptical. But let me tell you, “Chihayafuru” took me by surprise. The way it intertwines the intensity of karuta matches with the characters’ personal stories is nothing short of brilliant.

What I love most about “Chihayafuru” is its character development. Each character has depth and complexity that make them feel so real. And let’s not forget about the love triangle – it’s one of the most emotionally charged ones I’ve seen in anime.

“Chihayafuru” is an emotional roller coaster that tugs at your heartstrings. It’s about love, friendship, passion, and the struggles and triumphs that come with chasing your dreams. So, if you haven’t watched it yet, do give it a shot!

Chihayafuru Quotes from the Anime Series

Here are some heartfelt quotes from “Chihayafuru” that left a lasting impression:

  1. “There’s no one in this world who can take the place of another person.” – Chihaya Ayase
  2. “People who make an effort to make others happy are the best.” – Taichi Mashima
  3. “If you’ve got time to use big words like self-pity, you should put that energy into moving forward.” – Taichi Mashima
  4. “If you love karuta, there’s no time to be feeling disappointed.” – Chihaya Ayase
  5. “Someday, these feelings I have for you, they might disappear, right? Even so, I’m sure I’ll fall in love with you all over again.” – Taichi Mashima
  6. “No matter where I am, I’ll always be waiting for you.” – Arata Wataya
  7. “I want to be the strongest, so I can take anything I want.” – Chihaya Ayase

About the Author/Artist

Yuki Suetsugu, the creator of “Chihayafuru”, is a renowned manga artist known for her ability to craft stories that are emotionally engaging and beautifully illustrated. She has a knack for presenting traditional Japanese culture in a way that’s appealing to the modern audience, making her works a delight for both local and international fans.

TV or Movie Adaptations

“Chihayafuru” has been adapted into an anime series and a live-action film, both of which have been well-received. The anime, in particular, shines in its ability to capture the intensity of karuta matches and the emotional nuances of the characters.

Chihayafuru FAQ

Is “Chihayafuru” worth watching? Absolutely! If you appreciate character-driven stories with emotional depth and cultural elements, you’ll enjoy “Chihayafuru”.

Is there a romance in “Chihayafuru”? Yes, there’s a love triangle between the main characters, Chihaya, Taichi, and Arata, which adds an emotional layer to the series.

What is karuta? Karuta is a traditional Japanese card game that combines elements of poetry, memory, and speed. The game plays a central role in “Chihayafuru”.

And that’s it for my review on “Chihayafuru”. This series truly is a gem, and I can’t recommend it enough. Give it a watch, and let it surprise you like it did me. Happy watching, minna!