The Ezo Ag Festival is finally here, but Hachiken is in the hospital recovering from exhaustion. Thankfully, the rest of his classmates are able to get the Festival off without a hitch thanks to all the preparation work he did, and even Hachiken's brother comes by to pitch in in his brother's absence. We finally also met Hachiken's parents, and it is abundantly apparent why Hachiken decided to go to school so far away from them. After he is released from the hospital, his friends try to fill him in on all the Festival details without making him sad that he missed it all. Later, Hachiken and Mikage go on their date that he promised her, but several classmates had the same idea for a location, and their date becomes less exclusive.
The first half of this volume changes tone from how the rest of the series has been. Hachiken dealing with his family is the dark rain cloud in this otherwise sunny sky of a story. I'm glad we finally got some insight as to why Hachiken moved away, other than his explanations - we actually got to SEE it, and his dad is a piece of WORK! I do feel bad for the mother who is really just trying to keep the peace, but her methods can be questionable and not helpful between the father and son. This volume still has plenty of cute farm animals, but proves that it isn't just a whimsical story about learning agriculture.
Sara's Rating: 9/10
Suitability Level: Grades 7-12
Reviews of previous volumes in this series: vol 1, vol 2, vol 3, vol 4, vol 5, vol 6
Publisher: Yen Press
Publication Date: February 19, 2019
ISBN: 9781975327620 (Paperback)
Tags: Rating: 9/10, Suitability: Middle School, Suitability: High School, Manga, Slice of Life, Farming, School Age
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