My Big Sister Lives in a Fantasy World: The Strongest Little Brother’s Commonplace Encounters with the Bizarre?!

By Tsuyoshi Fujitaka and An2A. Released in Japan as “Neechan wa Chuunibyou” by Hobby Japan. Released in North America digitally by J-Novel Club. Translated by Elizabeth Ellis.

Well, we’ve reached the 5th volume, which is usually around when a lot of light novel series decide to give us a series of interconnected short stories, and that’s the case here, as our heroes’ club advisor (who is the villain from the prior book, returned to be a counselor for Yuichi for reasons I won’t bother to get into as they’re stupid) explains that the other villains will probably have a rest period before they try to attack again and restart the main plot. Of course, Yuichi is who he is, so this doesn’t mean that his life becomes a normal romantic school comedy. Every week brings a fresh new series of supernatural things for him to punch, rivals to take down, and girls to rescue. Why? Well, because he is who he is, trained by his older sister.

As I’ve discovered with a lot of these short story books, the rule of thumb is that the longer the story, the better it is. This means the book gets better as it goes along, as the final two stories are definitely the longest and best. But it also means you start by wading through a lot of drek. The first story (and connected prologue) attempts to show us that Kanako and her writing career is still relevant to the plot, but I’m fairly sure that’s not the case – mostly it’s there to make fun of light novels. We then get a story of a yokai who tries to seduce men, but looks like a little girl, which at least keeps the lolicon jokes down to a mere 2-3 per page, but is otherwise meh. The third story introduces a friend/lackey of Mutsuko, who has new powers she wants to test on Yuichi. The main thrust of the story is that the girl is very fat, which Yuichi seeks to remind us of constantly. I was more amused by her constantly slipping into different types of over the top speech patterns – it reminded me of the otaku from Oregairu, and distracted me from the endless fat comments. The other yokai stories are so dull I’ve already forgotten them.

The last two stories, though, are decent, and help to make the book at least get a low passing grade. The story with Yoriko attracting the attention of a delinquent, and then a yakuza with a thousand men at his command, is merely an excuse to see how ridiculous things can get, which honestly is why I read this series in the first place, so I was quite pleased – they got very ridiculous. Also, their mother is Kasumi Tendo – I was very disappointed she didn’t say “Ara, ara”. The final story deals with spirits, and whether Yuichi can punch them with his manly fists of justice (answer: of course he can). It’s more of a hodgepodge than the previous story, seeming content to throw plot ingredients into a nabe pot and see what comes out, but it was also fun, even if the ending was slightly predictable (I say slightly only because I guessed the wrong ghost).

The cliffhanger may be the most interesting part of the book (which doesn’t speak well of it), seeming to introduce Yuichi’s next major foe, a protagonist from a different world who honestly reminds me of the hero from Little Apocalypse. (Boy, wouldn’t that be a crossover?) Also, don’t think I didn’t notice Natsuki simply vanishing midway through the book. We’ve only got two more to go in this series, so keep reading if you’re a fan. Otherwise, skip it.

Did you enjoy this article? Consider supporting us.

Speak Your Mind