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Chihaya Furu  
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All her life, Chihaya's dream was to see her model sister become Japan's best... That is, until a quiet, unassuming transfer student named Arata tells her otherwise. A dream, he explains to her, is something she needs to work at herself.
Arata plays a competitive version of a traditional Japanese card game, known as Hyakunin Isshu, in a way Chihaya has never seen before. After taking Arata's place in a game, Chihaya discovers she has a passion for it. Now Chihaya wants to become number one in the world, the Queen of Karuta.

Note: Won the 2nd Manga Taisho Award and the 35th annual Kodansha Manga Award for Best Shoujo.
Was nominated for the 20th Tezuka Osamu Cultural Prize in 2016.


Related Series
Chihaya Furu (Novel) (Side Story)

Associated Names
Chihaya Full

Groups Scanlating
Immortal Abyss
Lazy Ass Scans
Living Dolls

Latest Release(s)
v.37 c.192 by TDX 6 days ago
v.37 c.191 by TDX 26 days ago
v.37 c.189-190 by TDX about 1 month ago
Search for all releases of this series

Status in Country of Origin
36 Volumes (Ongoing)

Completely Scanlated?

Anime Start/End Chapter
Starts at Vol 1, Chap 1 [S1]; Vol 9, Chap 50 [S2]
Ends at Vol 9, Chap 49 [S1]; Vol 17, Chap 93 [S2]

User Reviews

9 topics, 51 posts
Click here to view the forum

User Rating
Average: 8.7 / 10.0 (527 votes)
Bayesian Average: 8.57 / 10.0
 39% (203 votes)
 26% (135 votes)
 21% (111 votes)
 8% (40 votes)
 2% (12 votes)
 2% (10 votes)
 1% (4 votes)
 0% (2 votes)
 0% (2 votes)
 2% (8 votes)

Last Updated
January 16th 2018, 10:05am PST



Category Recommendations





Original Publisher

Serialized In (magazine)
Be Love (Kodansha)

Licensed (in English)

English Publisher
Kodansha Comics (8 Volumes - Ongoing; Digital)

Activity Stats (vs. other series)
Weekly Pos #126 increased(+96)
Monthly Pos #382 increased(+30)
3 Month Pos #312 increased(+77)
6 Month Pos #401 decreased(-63)

List Stats
On 2637 reading lists
On 1413 wish lists
On 118 unfinished lists
On 520 custom lists

Note: You must be logged in to update information on this page.

Forum Posts
Taichi or Arata? about 1 year ago
Yuki Suetsugu's Chihayafuru Gets Live-Action Film over 2 years ago
Chihayafuru (Arata/Taichi) over 2 years ago
General Technical question about scanlating over 4 years ago
Anime vs Manga over 4 years ago

Click to view the forum

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User Comments [ Order by time added ]

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What is Chihayafuru?   
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by kekkaishistar
April 5th, 2013, 10:55pm
Chihayafuru is a word that means balanced and strong, like a top spinning continuously while maintaining perfect balance without ever shaking. Like the meaning behind its title, the story is a beautifully crafted masterpiece that is genuinely rare to see in manga. Sometimes stories tend to loose their pace in either the plot line or in a poorly developed character, but Chihayafuru maintains both and never looses its pace or forgets where it is heading to. It contains a vast array of characters and develops them thoroughly to the frightening point that they don't appear to be on a paper or the screen. The story starts of in an engaging manner - a brief flashback to the time when the characters, as children, first meet and proceeds on to introduce their weaknesses and their strengths. From there on the reader simply gets pulled into the story. When it seems like things are calming down, the plot line twists and turns and binds its cast into the 100 Ogura poems of Karuta.

In general Chihayafuru is an amazing story. The sport, karuta, which makes up the skeletal structure of the story, is simple, but the story writing, character interaction and the way the author ties the poems in with its cast, make it a sport thats far from just memorization and reflexes. It becomes the reason to gain friendship, achieve dreams, discover passion, find faults, improve and step forward.






Composition (flow of story):


The reason why I love Chihayafuru is because of its slow romance. For once we see a love that is actually realistic. For once we see a story where the only point of the story isn't to get the main characters to fall in love. This is why I love chihayafuru.

... Last updated on September 27th, 2013, 10:36pm
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A promising manga...   
Rating: 8.5 / 10.0
by awavingflag
June 22nd, 2012, 5:46pm
...with likable and flawed characters and an interesting premise. I see that some people point out that since readers may not be familiar with the kurata game, they will miss the nuances that someone who IS familiar with it will catch. I personally haven't found this to affect my appreciation of the manga in the least; I still feel emotionally-invested in the characters' defeats and victories.

Speaking on that, what I like most about Chihayafuru is that there ARE a lot of defeats. I like that it dwells on the struggles the characters face and shows them as opportunities for growth. It makes for an interesting, riveting and realistic read. I wouldn't say that there's very little going on in the plot department, though maybe it may seem that way to some readers who either don't find kurata a terribly exciting subject to begin with, or who are more used to flashier(?) mangas.

Below is mainly in response to blackmokona's review, which I found to be off the mark in its condemnation of a pretty good series.

The manga doesn't "dote" on the "flat genius romantic interest" because Arata only briefly shows up after the chapters in which Chihaya and Taichi go to Fukui. Arata is not a flat character. We see a clear change in him after
Spoiler (mouse over to view)
his grandfather's death through his rejection of what was/is his favorite game. It's not guilt, it's not "wallowing in [his own] melodrama." Is it that difficult to believe that Arata's mourning for his grandfather manifests itself in this manner? It's a very human response, people deal with grief in different ways, this isn't a huge suspension of disbelief.

I would argue that when the flashback ends you feel that the "emotional upheaval" of the flashback chapter feels "cheated" because you have extremely high expectations for ten-year-olds. The flashback's function is to show the contrast of Arata past and present, as well as to show the initial meeting of the three characters, to lay out the foundations of their motivations. The present is where the emotional growth will really begin as they struggle to the top. Frankly, it's refreshing to see that the characters' actions and reactions are realistic. My issues with Chihaya as the heroine aside, I do think you're a little too personally hung up on her outer 'beautification'..

I do agree that there are a lot of panels in which Taichi is gazing at Chihaya - but not always in the 'I like you' way, sometimes in admiration, sometimes in encouragement. What I like about Taichi and Chihaya is that they DO have a relationship beyond the 'potential romantic couple' angle - they're friends who support each other and each other's passion for the game, so it isn't as annoying and infantile as you're making it out to be. (Case in point: look at most other shoujo mangas and compare with this one.)

Yes, maybe the whole deal behind Arata purging kurata from his life is an overdone plot device; but 'painful', no. It WOULD be painful if it was dragged on and on and on... but it's resolved when Chihaya and Taichi visit him. This calls back to the bond forged between them in the earlier chapters, and it also points out that Arata obviously loves kurata. He didn't reject kurata because he blamed the game for making him miss his grandfather's death, but because it served as a reminder of the grandfather who is no longer there, who was a powerful influence on him for liking the game in the first place. Kurata became a painful association and distancing himself from that association is a realistic response, I think. An emotional response, too, which are sometimes both logical and illogical (as in logical to that person, but appears illogical to others). Arata being able to enjoy the game again is symbolic of him moving on.

If you think that that is a "completely facile approach" to grief and growth, then okay, we all have our opinions.

... Last updated on June 22nd, 2012, 5:51pm
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mY THOUGHTS about Chihayafuru...=D   
Rating: N/A
by sharelvandor
May 30th, 2015, 12:44am
Chihayafuru is really an awesome read but I like the anime most. At first, I was also hesitant to read it because of the plot. I mean I really don't have any idea on what a karuta game looks like since I'm not Japanese--but then I remembered that I actually got hooked with Hikaru no Go's a manga that depicts a Japanese board game and because I got hooked with it I actually started learning how to play Go and then I thought why not give Chihayafuru a try. It might be actually interesting too and then when I started reading it--just WOW! I got hooked with Chihayafuru a lot more than Hikaru no Go. And I still don't get the whole process of the game--but it's actually very interesting especially the poems written in the cards. I really love the poems especially when Kana-chan started giving a background history about it and the deep meaning behind each and every poem and how she connects it with every character or the circumstances in the story. I just love it! Chihayafuru is really informative. It also gives you a chance to discover more of Japanese culture. It's a culture wise manga and it's really a great find.

Another aspect that I like about Chihayafuru is because it's not the typical sappy romance manga that I usually read. Actually when I think about it there's actually not much of a romance thing going on, if I'm going to compare it in the simplistic way of defining what romance is. The romance here is just light--too light actually but at the same time I can't help but feels there's an undeniable deep bond and love between the characters that simply defies the typical meaning of what really love is and maybe that's what makes it really special for me.

It's also not only centered about romance since typically stories about highschoolers are all about romance but it's also about building relationships--it's all about friendships, making great memories together as well as discovering themselves in the process. The character development is just so great. Each character even the supporting role is highlighted with deep care. They all have their own issues in life, they all struggled with it, they all tried to face it with resolve in their own (weird) ways and whether they failed or succeeded they still to continue to grow and I just can't help but think that i want to see more of their growth. And I think that the Karuta with an added bonus of friends are the driving force behind their AWESOME growth.

And that's why I'm really head over heels with Chihayafuru. I can't get enough of it. SUGOI!....=D
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Unexpectedly good   
Rating: N/A
by ache
October 23rd, 2012, 10:36am
I'd given this manga a wide berth simply because, honestly, a manga about flicking cards?

But man, is it GOOD. Even if you're not Japanese and this game is completely alien to you, this manga forces you to care. It's pretty typical, I suppose, of those shonen-type zero-to-hero bildungsromans, except with beautiful art and a much more josei slant and - I'm being honest here - really hawt boys.

At least Chihaya lacks the immaturity and wishiwashiness of shojo heroines, which I ADORE, mostly because her word revolves around karuta (rather than experiencing the *~spring of youth~* or the perfect high school romance!!!1one). Maybe making her beautiful was a little overkill, but meh, who can blame an author for wanting an attractive lead? Makes for pretty for us, too!

I love too that there ARE defeats, and they are many, and they are painful. Chihaya, though not immature in the typical way, IS child-like, and she must grow. And the growth is organic precisely because of the many pitfalls she experiences along the way, where each defeat becomes a moment of revelation and refinement for Chihaya, both as a character and a karuta player. Which is AWESOME. Because you're really there with her, every step of the way.

I actually prefer the anime to the manga art-wise - some deformities here and there, but meh, the PRETTY - but in terms of storytelling, manga can't be beat! ...Until season 2 of the anime comes out, of course. Hee!
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AMAZING & BORING at the same time...   
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by saxenas1
March 21st, 2012, 12:08pm
The art is amazing. LoTSA potential there for the artist. Simply loveable and vibrant. The Story is ALSO amazing. I mean its a boring card game, yet the author was able to play around with the character roles so well that it can be summer up in only one phrase....."AMAZING & BORING"
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I really like it but...   
Rating: N/A
by geniLove
June 30th, 2014, 9:28am
I stopped reading because I am waiting for some of the middle chapters to be scanned, translated and such. I'm holding out hope and I don't want to spoil the story for myself. Please, someone, post from chapter 49!
Scanlation teams, FIGHTING!
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it is a romance   
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by namu76
November 22nd, 2012, 9:01pm
like in a man's

Well, it is true that one of this manga's unmistakably appeal is its romance. Speaking of which, I love the scene where Chihaya and Arata's eyes met early in first actually made my heart racing. This story is a drama. And a very realistic one, there is no trick, no gimmick (lol). Really. No magic, no fate nor destiny, just natural occurrences. The competitive part feels kind of similar to Hikaru no Go, but oh well....IT is a whole different story.

I love it so much that I got conflicted when I found out there are two groups releasing the chapters. Since skipping chapters of the series I really like is out of question. Please, will anyone release the missing chapters alreadyconfused It's been more than 2 months since chapter 41....
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Rating: N/A
by phanzanu
January 2nd, 2012, 8:55am
The anime adaptation is awesome. Madhouse brought a beautiful animation to a beautiful manga. Here are just some deviations of the anime from the manga (unless I'm mistaken) for the detail-lovers:

- Nishida's story was expounded in the anime
- Chihaya visits Ooe's store in the anime

Just some little fillers that I don't think anyone will mind, because it actually gives their stories more color.
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Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by inerdi
July 23rd, 2010, 5:52pm
This manga is very aesthetically pleasing as well as being well thought out. It's various structural features makes it very interesting to read, and it irks me that the scans don't come out faster. But it's a very lovely manga and probably one of the best I've read. So I'd recommend it to anyone for a good read.

... Last updated on August 12th, 2010, 5:21am
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expectedly good! RECOMMENDED!!   
Rating: 10.0 / 10.0
by angelfire_aja
March 27th, 2012, 9:39am
I was just skimming through some animes to watch. When i found the plot soooo interestong and the art too, i decided to go directly to reading the manga, instead. Now i think, "HOW COME I NEVER FOUND THIS BEFORE??" Like i have been hunting my way to get through my depression and found only so-so manga to pass time, i just found it NOW?? This deserved to be RECOMMENDED!! you cant afford to miss this.

P.S. I really need not point it out but---*whispers* I really like model-like protagonists and they happen to be all girls. Chihaya is just so COOL! Has her own way of showing it in an non-cliched manner. Now i wanna get better in a card/board game. . . Hmmmm, chess is a bit intimidating, let's say I take the game of the generals, then? Haha

... Last updated on March 28th, 2012, 1:57am
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