Samatarou Kamiyama is the son of a god and must live in the human world with his family to learn about them, in order to become a better god when the time comes to succeed his father. His closest friend is Tenko, Samatarou's guardian angel since birth. One day he falls for Kumiko Komori, a girl who just transferred to their school, and decides to win her heart without relying on any of his relatives' godly powers, oblivious to the fact that Tenko herself has a crush on him.
Kamisama Kazoku is a fantasy novel. From the title you can already get a glimpse of what the story is gonna be about: "God Family." The main protagonist, Kamiyama Samatorou is a son of god. His Father, Osamu (commonly called as 'Papa') is of course, a god; Mother Venus(Mama) is a goddess, older sister Misa and younger sister Meme are both goddess candidates. And plus, Tenko whose mission is to protect (more like, uh, stay together) Samatarou until he grows into a real god. And these 6 people are living in an ordinary house in Setagaya, Japan, just like a typical family would
Kamisama Kazoku (shortly KK from now on) is a story depicting this family's ordniary (O RLY?) lives, human-yet-god Samatarou's "boring" highschool days, and many other friends around him.
You could say almost all light novels feature crazy settings and characters and it's quite difficult to compare and rate stuff, but I'm pretty sure that you'll agree that KK's characters are unique. Everyone in the family has his/her own special background/personality. Which makes the story more fun to read. :)
Style of Writing
KK is the 3rd light novel series I've ever read, following "Toradora!" and "Watashitachi no Tamura-kun". The two series were both by the same author/illustrator (and translator;;) and so the overall style was quite similar.
So when I started reading KK, I felt right away that this was indeed different. (duh) But seriously, I thought "wow, I never knew you could write a novel like this." The "light novel" genre itself means it's written "light", and there isn't much of a limit to the format of writing. Typical light novels feature dialogues between characters, reminding me of Anime or Manga. (No wonder these three are closely related huh. :P) Adding to this, what I found interesting was how the "viewpoint" was freely manipulated.
Of course, there were parts in Toradora also where the viewpoint was naturally changed to 1st person when trying to describe the character's inner thoughts. But in KK, there are instances where the author himself seems to be talking to the readers; for example: "I'll leave to your imagination about what comes next." ^o^~
The author sure has some sense of humor. As I was reading the book, I could really see that he was trying hard to think of creative ways of saying stuff. Like, he didn't just stick to a plain way of describing "a big boob," but instead chose to write "a boob that'd be faster to count from Z than from A." I could also notice his little-bitty humorous intentions here and there, such as starting each chapter with the sentence "Kamiyama Samatarou is a son of god," or titling each book volumes with 4-letter kanji word (spin-off stories unnecessary for the main story progression dont follow this rule). Reading his postscripts at the end of the book was quite fun, too.
But yea, seriously, this author guy is a capable one. According to his author-intro or website, he seems to have written a book, song, game scenario, and even does illustrations. Wow.
The illusts in this book was done by Yasuda Suzuhito, who's also known for his "Yozakura Quartet." I quite liked his drawing style and character designs. Plus his pastel-toned colors and half-toneish textured pictures looked nice.
But I wish that there were more illusts included, especially in the middle parts of the series (vol.4-6?) it felt like there wasn't enough illusts at all. And some of the illusts that were there was kind of 'abstact'. I don't know if it was intentional, but in some points it just felt like he wasn't putting in enought effort. Oh well.
Now that I have written it, it looks like I've only put out praises for the book. But it's true that I quite liked the story, and was really into it while reading. It's not just another typical harem-school-fantasy-supernatural-love-comedy, but something different. KK is a "bildungsroman" novel, and as the plot progresses, Samatarou encounters various events (tests?) that trains him of becoming a real god, and learns to understand the many hardships humans have to break through in their everyday lives. I think there is a profound meaning that the author was trying to communicate behind all the fun story.
The value of life.
The weakness of man.
And how we should be thankful for every little thing we currently have.
And so here ends the review. Sorry for being such a baad writer, but oh well, it just turned out to be like this cause I was trying to write without any spoilers to the story itself. (believe or not.. :P)
(review taken from my blog: http://www.xenosium.com/161)