Kakuriyo: Bed & Breakfast for Spirits Graphic Novel Volume 1 cover image
Rated “T” for “Teen”
Afterlife Inn Cooking is a Japanese light-novel series written by Midori Yūma and illustrated by Laruha. Wako Ioka has been producing a manga adaptation of the novel for the Japanese manga magazine, B's Log Comic, since 2016. VIZ Media has started publishing an English-language graphic novel edition of the manga under the series' English title, Kakuriyo: Bed & Breakfast for Spirits.
Kakuriyo: Bed & Breakfast for Spirits, Vol. 1 (Chapters 1 to 5) introduces a young woman named Aoi Tsubaki. She inherited her grandfather, Shiro's ability to see the spirits known as ayakashi (yokai). Aoi also inherited his massive debt to the ayakashi, and now, she’s been kidnapped and taken to Kakuriyo (the spirit world) to settle that debt.
Aoi's options are limited. She can marry Kijin a.k.a. “the Ōdana, who is the ogre and the owner of “Tenjin-ya,” the inn where her grandfather incurred so much debt. Or she can be eaten by demons. But Aoi is determined to settle affairs on her own terms.
THE LOWDOWN: I was interested in reading the Kakuriyo: Bed & Breakfast for Spirits manga after first learning about it via a VIZ Media press release. Luckily, my VIZ media representative sent me a copy of the first volume for review.
Kakuriyo: Bed & Breakfast for Spirits Graphic Novel Volume 1 is a delight. Before I continue this review, however, I must admit to you, dear readers, that I am a huge fan of yokai manga. Kakuriyo does not have prettiest art that I have ever seen in a yokai manga, nor are these most imaginative ayakashi characters I have ever come across (at least so far in the narrative).
What Kakuriyo does have is a fantastic lead in Aoi Tsubaki, a young woman who is stout and determined no matter what is against her. Aoi has “street smarts” in the fact that she is always on the lookout for someone or some spirit that might try to harm her or to take advantage of her. An engaging character like Aoi, who is full of curiosity, is worth following.
I READS YOU RECOMMENDS: Fans of yokai manga will want to read the shojo Beat series, Kakuriyo: Bed & Breakfast for Spirits.