Shintarou Kisaragi's life as a shut-in would have been perfect if not for the cyber girl Ene, who lives in his computer. Upbeat and cheerful, she enjoys playing pranks, in complete contrast to his own apathy. It is due to Ene's daily antics that his keyboard breaks. The dread of not having the use of his computer is too much to bear, and he sets out to replace his keyboard.
And so, in the dead heat of summer, Shintarou leaves his room for the first time in two years. However, this simple shopping trip takes a turn for the worse when the department store is threatened by a group of terrorists, and he is taken hostage along with the other shoppers. Tied up in this crisis, he meets the "Mekakushi-dan," an enigmatic group of teenagers with red eyes and strange powers. Seemingly brought together by chance, Shintarou must save the department store with their help. But the fates of these teenagers are more intertwined than they seem, and they are left to wonder whether their meeting was more than mere coincidence.
[UPDATED] At the time of this review, I've read the all 8 volumes of Kagerou Daze.
The story of Kagerou Daze is a strange and weird one. It is told in a nonlinear way, switching from the past to present frequently. The main story takes place on August 14th and 15th, though goes past this as the story progresses, and is about strange eye powers that reside in the main characters, the Kagerou Daze, and different timelines.
Kagerou Daze is a route of Jin (Shizen no Teki-P)'s Kagerou Project, and is technically a sequel to the songs and manga according to him. Despite this,
it still stands on its own for the most part, but I felt it needed a more finite conclusion and expanded more on some of the "Route XX" parts of the songs. In my opinion, it's overall the best version of the Kagerou Project story, but still recommend checking out the songs at least if you want an improved experience.
Sidu (formerly known as Shidu) is an incredible artist and one of my personal favorites. Sidu's style is very distinct and noticeably improved greatly each volume, which is a plus because the novels start with good art from volume 1. Kagerou Daze also has some of my favorite character designs, which were done by Sidu and Wannyanpu, but Sidu perfected Wannyanpu's designs which created incredibly appealing designs.
The characters in Kagerou Daze are well done and interesting. Each main member gets a focus throughout the story.
The only particularly weak character of note is the main antagonist, who I felt should've been better fleshed out more, but is still a decent antagonist that doesn't drag the story down.
I LOVE the Kagerou Project franchise (songs, novel, manga, anthologies, anime) and this is my favorite light novel. The novel is well written and I can feel how hard Jin had worked on these novels and I truly appreciate it.
I highly recommend this light novel, I love it deeply and if you like nonlinear storytelling, this would be to your interest. If you enjoyed the songs or Mekakucity Actors I severely recommend reading this.
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