your name. is a novel that tells the story audiences are familiar with from the anime film of the same name.
Written by: Makoto Shinkai
English Publisher: Yen Press
Release Date: May 23, 2017
From reading the Afterword written by Shinkai, it appears that the novel came out before the movie did in Japan; at the time he wrote the Afterword, the film was still in production.
Since I had already seen the your name. film before reading this book, I already had a basic idea of what to expect. There were a couple of scenes in the book that were embellished on slightly compared to what was shown in the film, but for the most part, the story of the film and book are very similar. The best example of this embellishment comes in the scene where Mitsuha discovers she’s in Taki’s body for the first time.
The biggest difference between the two mediums is the fact that in the book, Shinkai has the story being told from a first person perspective. Since there are two protagonists, Taki and Mitsuha, this means that the first person perspective shifts between these two characters. Most of the time, the book makes it clear when you’re shifting from one character’s perspective to another. However, there were a couple of times that I had to re-read a section to make sure I was following which character was telling the story.
After I finished reading your name., I thought it was just as strong of a story in this version as it was in the anime film. I was quite impressed by how Shinkai was able to convey the emotions and tensions of the story in a prose format. Even though there may not be the visual or audio clues that you would get when you’re watching the movie, the reader can still sense and understand what’s going on and how important the plot points are to the story. In a lot of respects, the book captures the wonder of the characters and the urgency of the story for the reader in the same way the film does for its viewers.
The book may be close to 200 pages long, but it’s actually a fairly quick and easy read if you can find the time to sit and read for a while. All of the pages included in the book contain text. Since the book was written before the movie finished production, there are no stills from the film included to pad the page count. The only image from the your name. anime film to appear anywhere is on the front cover.
This book will obviously have an appeal to readers who are already familiar with the movie, but I think it’s an easy enough story to follow and enjoy for readers who have never seen the film.
If you consider yourself a fan of the your name. anime film, I would highly encourage you to add this novelization of the story to your personal library.