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your name. Another Side:Earthbound (light novel) Hardcover – November 21, 2017
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The first section is the only one told from Taki's perspective inside Mitsuha's body. It starts off with Taki thinking about Mitsuha's "endlessly soft and unreliable" physique. "The instability shocked him." "He grabbed his left arm…it was weird that something this soft managed to function as a proper arm." It's ridiculous. And this isn't even Taki's first experience as Mitsuha. From there we get a series of incidents in which Taki acts like a guy in a girl's body, usually to great success. There are a few complimentary observations about what Mitsuha must be like, but overall the story left me thinking about Mitsuha's comment in the movie that Taki shouldn't be so full of himself.
The second section is told from Tessie's perspective, and isn't bad. Tessie worrying about being corrupted by the small-town system feels right. However, the construction of the "Itomori Cafe" out of logs that in the movie is strongly implied to be an idea of Taki/Mitsuha is here shown as solely Tessie's idea. It doesn't match the movie and it seems out of character for him.
The third section is told by Mitsuha's younger sister Yotsuha. Again, not bad, though it felt repetitive until an ending sequence that is charming, but contrary to the movie. If Yotsuha had experienced the sort of thing shown here, her behavior in the movie would've been far different. And, once again, Mitsuha herself comes off as lacking compared to Taki.
The fourth section is the weakest, for three reasons. It's told from the perspective of Mitsuha's father (maybe that's a fourth reason). While showing the courtship that led to him marrying Mitsuha's mother, nowhere in it do you get any hint of why Futaba would have had the slightest interest in such a cold fish. Futaba apparently just knew she was supposed to marry him so she pursued him until he did. The second problem is the old "I did a lot of research and you're going to suffer for it" thing, with lots of discussion about fine points of folklore (because Mitsuha's father is shown as a professor of such things before marrying Futaba). And, finally (and worst I think), the final confrontation in which Mitsuha convinces her father to order the evacuation is depicted to be not a result of Mitsuha's own determination and arguments, but rather as an inevitability that her father had been primed for. All she had to do was repeat the warning Taki had already tried to convey and her father would give the order. This story tries to seriously undermine Mitsuha's achievement in convincing her father to do the right thing.
Overall, this light novel felt to me like it tried to diminish Mitsuha and was inconsistent in other areas. It didn't work for me.