Chi’s Sweet Home Volume 12
Chi’s Sweet Home volume 12 concludes the cute cat manga series with a lengthy exploration of what “home” means. From the beginning, Chi has been troubled by memories of her time with her mother. The kitten doesn’t always understand her wants, but she feels something’s missing, although she enjoys her life with little boy Yohei and his parents.
As this volume opens, Chi and her mother come face to face. Yohei immediately sweeps up his pet/friend and runs away with Chi, not wanting to lose her. Chi doesn’t realize that it’s one or the other, her mother or her new family, but Yohei does.
Since the family is about to move to France, and since they’re also aware others are looking for Chi (thanks to a “lost cat” neighborhood poster), there’s a conflict. The parents don’t want to disappoint their son, but they also want to do the right thing.
The individual chapters show Chi wondering about the moving process and all the boxes, Chi trying to get help for an injured cat, and Chi playing with her mother and siblings. There are a few nail-biting moments of action, both from a potential car encounter and with a time-restrained chase to reunite characters (with some truly massive coincidences), but overall, this volume is in keeping with the others in the series — Chi has cutesy internal narration, Chi eats and sleeps and plays.
Taken as a whole, though, the events in this book are more cohesive than in some others in the series. It reads as one big story to wrap things up with substance. With the overall theme of choosing one’s family — or perhaps it’s better phrased as a child growing up — it’s a fitting conclusion to the lengthy run. The bright pastel watercolors of the art are both calming and involving, as the reader wants to find out the final conclusion. Will Chi reunite with her mother and the other kittens, or will the family take her to another country with them?
As extras, this book also has an interview with author Konami Kanata on the series conclusion and what inspired it at the beginning; promotion of the series ebooks and social media accounts; and a fake passport for Chi.