May 27, 2013
If you are here, it means either you are a big fan of Nishio Ishin, or saw the anime Bakemonogatari and fall in love with it. Monogatari series, as expected from Nishio Ishin, is full of Japanese word plays and definition intonation; what I mean is it is hard to understand from just reading it once. From here and now will be a review of the book, not the anime.

Before getting into review and "a bit" of spoilers, here is the timeline of the story

Kizumonogatari -> Nekomonogatari Kuro -> Bakemonogatari -> Nisemonogatari

Now let's start this.

Consist of different girls possessed by different Kai'i(Oddity or strangeness). Senjogahara Hitagi possessed by a Crab, Kanbaru Suruga possessed by a Monkey, Hachikuji Mayoi possessed by a Snail, Sengoku Nadeko possessed by a Snake, and Hanekawa Tsubasa (re)possessed by a Cat. Each had a reason to why and how they where possessed to these oddities and you can find that out by reading the novel or already know from the anime. Araragi Koyomi basically helps these young ladies to remove these oddities from them, and the point is he only "helps", not actually "saves" them. Bakemonogatari, as it's name is a collection of stories(monogatari) of monsters, or oddities(Bakemono).

Koyomi Vamp. Yes, why wouldn't have our dear main male character not be possessed by a oddity? Araragi Koyomi, one day, meets a Vampire, Kiss-Shot Acerola-Orion Heart-Under-Blade, on the way back to his home. Kiss-Shot was heavily injured, and Koyomi gives up all his blood to her to save her, and from this, Kiss-Shot turns Koyomi into a Vampire. Kizumonogatari is the "Beginning" of the all the monogatari series. The point to pay attention to this story is not only thrilling battle scenes or the beauty of Kiss-Shot, but more of our dear almighty class-representative, Hanekawa Tsubasa. Kizumonogatari is a story where one and others hurt each other creating scars (Kizu) to each other.

There is a real and there is a fake imposter of that real. Now, which one has the more value?

Nisemonogatari features the story of Araragi Koyomi's cute little sisters, Araragi Karen and Tsukihi, the Fire Sisters. "Fire" is one feature to keep in mind for Nisemonogatari and Nekomongatari Shiro, but for Nisemonogatari, fire comes from the name of Karen and Tsukihi (Ren = fire, hi = fire). Karen is self-proclaimed "Moreu Onna" (Burning women), which she meant to explain her extraordinary passion towards everything. Tsukihi, is not passionate, but has a personality of that of a fire, hysteric. Main point of the story to pay a close attention is the Kaiki Deishu's logic towards fake and false. We can even say that Kaiki is the main character of the story, rather than Karen and Tsukihi. Nisemonogatari is a story where what can be called fake/imposter (Nise) and the true value of the world.

Nekomonogatari Kuro:
The talk of there being no such thing as right, is right.

Nekomonogatari Kuro is, yes a story of a cat(neko), but it's not that cute at all, or rather, a bit gruesome; Nekomonogatari Kuro and even go par with the Suruga Monkey from Bakemonogatari. The story takes place in between the Kizu and Bake, and is about Hanekawa Tsubasa and her meeting with a Cat, and more about the family of Hanekawa. Beginning starts with Koyomi's confession to Tsukihi that he can't stop thinking about Hanekawa's breasts, comedy, and then rapidly turns into serious story. Nekomonogatari Kuro, in another way to say it, Tsubasa Family, is about Hanekawa Tsubasa and her life in her family. The reason why Kuro (black) is added to it, you can find it out by yourself. Main point to pay attention to this story is the family issue, and the Oshino Meme's logic and Araragi Koyomi's logic towards people, or more about Hanekawa Tsubasa.

Nishio Ishin thank you for publishing books in out of time line for sakes. But still, I loved it, especially Nisemono and Nekomono Kuro. For people who are not a great fan of reading too much words, or not interested in beauty of Kanji and their true meanings, I really do not recommend any of Nishio Ishin's novel, but for the rest, Monogatari series is the best to know Nishio Ishin's writing style.

ps. All of them are available as anime so if you are confused or auditory learner, then go watch it after/before. It will make more sense.
Reviewer’s Rating: 10
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