Genshiken Book 9

The otaku/manga/anime fan series comes to an end with this volume and school graduation.

The club president’s American friends have returned. Sue, the bad-tempered yaoi fan, now has a dream: to attend university in Japan as an exchange student. Since she only talks in anime quotes, there’s some confusion over just how much Japanese she understands or can speak.

Genshiken Book 9 cover
Genshiken Book 9
Buy this book

For that reason, her friends think it’s a bad idea, but Ogiue (who winds up hosting Sue as a kind of test) admires her lack of insecurity about being such a fan. The others have a kind of self-disdain over their hobbies, perhaps because they’ve internalized the cultural attitudes that look down on such geeks. As an American, Sue instead has an unafraid independence. Which is kind of ironic, since everything she says comes from somewhere else.

I especially liked the story where Ogiue wants to polish her manga art in an attempt to go pro. Her boyfriend Sasahara is going to be a manga editor, so he advises her based on his reaction to her work. The two have to negotiate working together, separating their feelings from their professional needs. It’s tough, and emotional, but I was glad to see the two help each other. And his advice is pretty good for any writer.

The second half of the book has an air of finality, with characters thinking about their last chance to tell someone how they feel and a last cosplay party. That chapter is told silently, which gave me the feeling of watching a senior slide show. Images flash by, capturing the year’s memories — happy, sad, goofy, nostalgic, bittersweet, ridiculous. I admire the artist’s skill in portraying them in such varied fashion without text.

After that, it’s graduation and passing the torch and letting go of the college days, a feeling the reader shares knowing this is the end. It’s just the right ending for an enjoyable series.

I have previously reviewed Book 8. A complimentary copy for this review was provided by the publisher.


  1. […] Johanna Draper Carlson on the ninth and concluding volume of Kio Shimoku’s otaku soap opera, […]

  2. […] Okazu, Erica Friedman flips through vol. 2 of Yuri Hime S. At Comics Worth Reading, Johanna reviews vol. 9 of Genshiken and vol. 13 of The Wallflower and updates her review pages on The Kindaichi Case Files and ES: […]

  3. […] Like Us is moving towards conclusion in its next volume (#14 due January). Otaku club valentine Genshiken also ended with its ninth book, another series I’ll […]

  4. […] each year. It takes place at Tokyo Big Sight, which otaku will recognize from Comic Party, Genshiken, and many other anime and manga […]

  5. […] Genshiken now that it’s ended? Try this series. The characters aren’t as fannish, but […]

  6. […] Unbalance was the manga (and anime) that the Genshiken characters were fans of. In that context, KU was supposed to be generic, a property that the author […]

  7. […] Official Book is Del Rey’s attempt to get one more sale from Genshiken fans now that the series has ended. The book also claims to be an introduction and guide for those who haven’t read the series […]

  8. […] see her as a full-fledged member and treat her as an equal. The Roman club is a twisted version of Genshiken for its members. It’s a safe place where they’re allowed to express and be themselves without […]

  9. […] this story took place in a different country with different expectations. I was vaguely reminded of Genshiken, but the characters aren’t as […]

  10. […] 0982, $10.99), described as both “Heathers goes to Japan” and “for readers of Genshiken and Mushishi“. (I see the former, not so much the latter, connection, but I admire how […]

  11. […] I got the appeal, but once you know the characters, it’s a lot of fun. The first series ran nine volumes (published by Del Rey), ending with graduation. To prepare for the sequel, Kodansha will also […]

  12. […] took me a couple of tries to get into the original Genshiken series, which concluded with a ninth volume in 2007. So although I wasn’t won over by the first book of this sequel series, I halfway […]

  13. […] have mentioned, writing about Book 1, that the internal volume and chapter numbering continues from Book 9 of the previous series, so it’s intended to continue onwards from where that left […]

Leave a Reply

Comments are closed.