Hellping

Novel Review – When Hikaru was on Earth……

Series: Hikaru ga Chikyuu ni Itakoro……

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Series review by 恋愛_ing

Genre: Romance, Comedy, faux-harem, adapted work, humiliation play, tear jerker, psychological, supernatural

(Extended) Background rambling

Well, given that I already had a translator afterword, I would have suggested to anyone to read that.

However, since that one is to be read after the entire series is read, I thought I should go about doing a spoiler-free version, a review, if you may.

This series came soon after the Bungaku Shoujo series ended at 15 volumes (Officially), and there was a little hype over the author because of that (however, that is somewhat mitigated by the increased media presence of Dengeki, MF Bunko J, and Fujimi Fantasia, now the Big 3 of the Japanese LN industry (and under Kadokawa).

I did mention it in my afterword, but this series was my ‘rebirth’.

Back then, I was jaded after having to do the translations, and also handle (pretty much everything) the admin work of Baka-Tsuki. Riajuu life caught up to me as I began school back then, and I was worn out by all the harem and OP characters that would become my nemesis over the following years.

It was Christmas Eve, 2012. Aoi-chan was lying in the bookshelf, and I had a little peek (back then, the books weren’t wrapped, and even if you do unwrap it, the staff typically don’t mind. Just make sure you do it ‘accidentally’).

2 hours later, I found myself buying the first three volumes.

2 days later, on Boxing Day, I formally announced my return…and things happened.

When I initially did this project as a preview, the first part was…the gravure photo magazine scene. That was the moment when I realized that Hikaru would beat out Biblia to be my flagship project for the next 3 years.

In case anyone is wondering how it looked, here’s a link (click on this sentence, you dummy)

I would say that without the Hikaru series, I would have stopped translating a long time back.

Nowadays, I prefer to pick works that are a little ‘niche’, because everyone else is willing, and eager to do the mainstream stuff. (It’s not my fault my series aren’t popular)

And I guess I have to thank Hikaru for that. It’s no longer about what readers want me to translate, but what I want readers to read.

That’s the main reason why for polls, if I see something that’s winning, I’ll consciously make a choice not to pick it.

Well, enough talk, time to get started.

 

Synopsis

The story starts with the death of Hikaru Mikado.

That guy was a natural charmer, a “harem king”, but had no real male friends.

After he died, he became a ghost, a soul, but Koremitsu Akagi can see him.

Koremitsu though, isn’t really like Hikaru. His red hair and his evil-looking eyes make him look like a delinquent, even though he is very kind inside.

Hikaru asks him a favour: he wants him to fulfill a promise, which he can’t fulfill anymore. The promise was to give his girlfriend and fiancée, Aoi Saotome, 7 gifts for her seventeenth birthday.

Koremitsu accepts, and has to work hard to help fulfill Hikaru’s promise with Aoi.

However, Hikaru’s request of Koremitsu’s help doesn’t end there!? Actually, there are more girls he made promises with, as expected of a harem king. And thus, Koremitsu continues to be haunted by Hikaru……

Characters

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Mikado Hikaru (Hikaru Mikado)

 

Remember me saying that mantra for the Bokushinu part?

It’s because of this guy.

Personality based on Hikaru Genji, but character based on the Little Prince. This is evident given the prince theme that was associated with him.

(Though I had a swing and a miss before when trying to guess his actual character)

Looking at his exploits with the girls, you would think that he would fit right into a typical romcom story.

But just as Genji Monogatari was a story of a tragic hero, so was Hikaru a deconstruction of the romcom, harem genre.

And this story looks into his motives, his deeds, and his consequences (though he died)

To be honest, I had his character profile first because the story has his name.

But I would peg him as a deuteragonist instead.

Akagi Koremitsu (Koremitsu Akagi)

A boy with low self-esteem because he looks like a delinquent.

Okay, I copied this from the Bokushinu review (any more delinquent stuff, and I’ll end up finishing the last few parts of ToraDora!…)

At the start of the volume, he would be the perfect candidate to be an FFF Inquisition member.

A few volumes in, and he’ll be high up on the wanted list.

Koremitsu in Genji Monogatari was merely an assistant to Genji, the one who did the background work, most prominent in the story of Yugao.

Here, he swaps roles with Genji to be the protagonist.

If a harem protagonist has to go through the rites of passage to be humiliated at any given moment.

I say this guy passed with flying colors.

Go get your reward.

 

Personal Thoughts

 

Funny how I mentioned the two main boys, and not the other girls…

Well, if I did that, there’s no end to this.

3 months passed since I last finished the Hikaru series, and even at times, I do remember the story in my mind.

I do memorize the original text just in case I want to translate at any given moment, and naturally, events stand out more than anything.

It was a long journey for them, but this story is called ‘When Hikaru was on the Earth……’ for a reason.

I’ll say that Takeoka is my second favorite light novel illustrator, the first being H2SO4. The watercolor art really is a thing of beauty. Unfortunately, such art is almost impossible to adapt into anime form, so I don’t expect there to be one. (Even the manga art was drastically changed).

The story feels like a Christmas Log Cake for me. So rich and sweet on the inside, but once everything was over, I just felt so melancholic, events passing like snow. A healing story it is, drama may be forced in many instances, but man does it give a healing vibe.

And with that, I present to you, what Koremitsu could have sung to the winning girl of this series. It’s a touching feeling, especially at the end:

If you get there before I do, don’t give up on me.

I’ll meet you when my chores are through, I don’t know how long I’ll be.

But I’m not gonna let you down, got to wait and see.

And between now and then, until I see you again,

I’ll be loving you,

Love, me.

                               000-D000-C

6 comments

  1. It’s not about your review but… do you think you could restore some files larethian deleted from B-T? IS, BakaTest, Alderamin, and some others have a lot of missing links. Like images and chapters.

    1. Unfortunately, the two pictures are actually two sides of a spread. Only way to piece them together is to photoshop them.

  2. Wait, does this mean I shouldn’t have vote for the project that I wanted you to translate @A@? Now I regret choosing kamemo….

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