The Empty Box and the Zeroth Maria
The Empty Box and the Zeroth Maria, known in Japan as Utsuro no Hako to Zero no Maria and also known as Hakomari, is a Japanese light novel series written by Eiji Mikage, with illustrations by Tetsuo.
Plot / Main storyThe story revolves around a carefree boy named Kazuki Hoshino, who is intensely attached to his normal daily life, and Aya Otonashi, who suddenly transfers into his class for the 13,118th time and declares her goal to "break" him forthwith. This starts an avalanche of events, involving a supernatural device known as the Boxes and a supernatural being, which pits the two characters against each other causing their friends to be caught under their crossfire.
Reader Reviewsby abh037
Utsuro no Hako to Zero no Maria, is, at its core, a thrilling tale of the darkest parts of the nature of the human psyche, which is why it kept me on the edge of my seat. Hints about characters' decisions later on are dropped all throughout the series, and foreshadowing is already there in the beginning of the first book, much of it coming true in a manner I'm not sure any of us could have expected.
I can only remember two scenes that could even remotely be considered "ecchi" and for once, they actually drove the plot of the story onwards, something this series wastes no ounce of witty, well-thought-out dialogue or nail-biting moments of suspense doing.
As for edginess, I don't think that term holds any meaning in this day and age, and heaven forbid someone in any of the given situations in the series be slightly depressed, much less all of them consecutively, interwoven with distress, betrayal, and the always-underestimated power of heartbreak.
I, personally, think Utsuro no Hako to Zero no Maria is one of the best stories ever told, and if there is any MAL rating I will agree with, it's this one.
There's only been positives for it in this thread so I'll drop my own two cents.
I, quite frankly, found it very boring. The prose was oddly structured meaning it was harder to read than a normal LN but without the flow of a proper novel, the characters unrelatable/uninteresting and the plot unimpressive. I believe I dropped it at around volume 3 or so (the one with the focus on Daiya).
It was not quite predictable, but I'd prefer an interesting yet slightly predictable story. In HakoMari's case, it danced around explaining concepts so much that I was thoroughly disappointed.
Well, this is this novel's superiority in my opinion.
- The Romance isn't something that grow in single night. This LN's romance is growing up as the story line forward. From adoring to loving, it give you a step of loving someone. And he will sacrifice many things to protect his love. A thorny path of romance that require sacrifice to get. I LOVE IT.
- Character Development Character Development of Hakomari isn't just for MC and Heroine. It give a chance for other characters to grow in depth. It make this LN isn't bland and instead, give the color for this LN. Not only MC, but another characters too. I could even confidently said it, This LN isn't got just one MC, but instead, almost everyone of this novel is MC in their own right.
- Decisive Execution Well, this LN has a very decisive conclusion. Every single loose end is tied by author. Love this kind of novel that give you a decisive conclusion about characters.
- Not-All-Happy-Story Type. OK, this is a bit of rant for me. How the hell a MC get ALL things that he want to easily? Why he didn't get some problem that sheke him enough to despair? How the hell MC can do anything he want and anyone obey him? I.T'.S.U.N.R.EA.S.O.N.A.B.L.E!!!!!
Ehem, Well, i'm a sucker for Weak-to-strong MC, but not kind that trained and get strong or use nakama power to overcame everything. What i mean is His Mentality. His mentality is becoming stronger everytime problem come. And It doesn't mean he is becoming more stronger without sacrifice. He will be despairing over it.
- Written by Eiji Mikage (ja)
- Illustrated by Tetsuo (415)
- Genre Action Drama Mystery Psychological Romance School Life Seinen Supernatural
- Published by ASCII Media Works
- English publisher NA Yen Press
- Original run January 10, 2009 – June 10, 2015
- Volumes 7 (Completed)
- Translations by Baka-tsuki
LinksIn this folder you will find :
- Utsuro no Hako to Zeroth no Maria Volume 1 PDF
- Utsuro no Hako to Zeroth no Maria Volume 2 PDF
- Utsuro no Hako to Zeroth no Maria Volume 3 PDF
- Utsuro no Hako to Zeroth no Maria Volume 4 PDF
- Utsuro no Hako to Zeroth no Maria Volume 5 PDF
- Utsuro no Hako to Zeroth no Maria Volume 6 PDF
- Utsuro no Hako to Zeroth no Maria Volume 7 PDF