At the end of volume one, the group discover a brick oven, so they spend the beginning of this one fixing it up and use the ingredients from around the farm to make pizza. Hachiken is the only one who has had pizza before, so he is in charge of making it and doing all the work necessary to secure the best ingredients. Then, it’s summer break, and Hachiken has to figure out where he will work for the summer, since he refuses to go home. He goes to work for Mikage on her family farm. One night, he decides to go walk to Towari’s farm, since he and Mikage are neighbors, but he doesn’t realize how far away it is and he gets lost in the wilderness at night. Lastly, he visits Tama-Chan’s family dairy and learns some harsh realities about what happens when milk cows don’t produce enough.
This is not a fast paced, action-packed kind of story, but I appreciate the attention to detail when it comes to farming and producing food. There is a little bit of time spent on actually making delicious dishes, but for the most part, this story focuses on what goes in to making what becomes ingredients for amazing meals. Hachiken learns every day how hard it is to care for animals that will eventually become meals, as I'm sure the reader does as well. Arakawa's unique style, especially when it comes to illustrating extreme emotions, brings some much-needed humor into a sobering topic.
Yen Press has this title rated as Teen for language. There are some swear words, but many are censored.
Sara's Rating: 9/10
Suitability level: Grades 7-12
Reviews of previous volumes in this series: vol 1
Tags: Rating: 9/10, Suitability: Middle School, Suitability: High School, Manga, Slice of Life, Farming
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