Light Novel: Maria-sama ga Miteru ~ Farewell Bouquet (マリア様がみてる フェアウェル ブーケ)

August 24th, 2012

The number one question in every fan’s mind as we read each successive Maria-sama ga Miteru novel is…is this the last one? This can’t go on forever, can it? Well, no, it can’t go on forever, as much as we might wish it could. But as for the first question, I have no answer. As with the last several of the books in the series, the ending is written so that if we never got another one, this would be a fine place to end the series. However…however… Maria-sama ga Miteru ~ Farewell Bouquet (マリア様がみてる フェアウェル ブーケ) ends at the end of July of Yumi’s third year at Lillian Jogakuen High School. I just cannot believe that Konno-sensei will just end it here. She could, definitely. But there’s the Sports Festival, and the Culture Festival and Christmas, and New Year’s…and Valentine’s Day (and the half-day date contest)…and the chance/need for the 2nd-years to find souer and the elections…and then there’s graduation.  I cannot imagine that we won’t be given the opportunity to end our time with Yumi and her friends with great wopping tears at graduation. I will not believe it.

But.

We might, and I can’t promise we won’t. Japanese fans are asking the same question, mind you, and we won’t know until we see more chapters appear in Cobalt Shueisha. (Btw, according to the Cobalt website, the upcoming November issue, will include a Marimite section on the enclosed Drama CD.)

In the meantime, Konno-sensei is being mean and teasing us unmercifully, with novel titles like Hello Goodbye and Farewell Bouquet. I mean, really.

So the book begins with a teacher meeting up with a student on the school grounds and being taken to the Rose Mansion for some herb tea and a long chat. The teacher, Katori Maki-sensei, has been around for quite a few of the novels, and we’ve come to like her quite a bit.

The stories that fill the spaces between Maki-sensei’s time at the Rose Mansion are a pile of some really odd stories. In one, a student wants a teacher to be her onee-sama, and finds that she’s her big sister for real. In another a female art teacher is abruptly asked to make cookies by a male teacher who finds himself presented with cookies that look like, well, breasts.  My favorite story includes a radically intelligent way to teach history to bored teen girls – imagine the clans and houses as a bunch of boy bands! Seriously, I thought that was genius.

But the real story, although it takes up the least space, is the story of why Maki-sensei is taking a leave of absence from school. And, ultimately, it’s Yumi that arranges for an impromptu, beautiful and topical herb bouquet from the Yamayurikai to Maki-sensei. This ribbon story includes cameos from all our principles.

I want to make sure I mention this: Maki-sensei has a whole scene in which she absolutely assures herself (and us) that she will not be quitting teaching, that she will be returning. I’m very glad that she was made to make that point. I’m really tired of anime/manga/games/novels clinging to the outdated and tired quitting work after getting married or pregnant thing. This is as 20th century in Japan as much as it is in the US.)

And last, the final chapter is a lovely interlude with Sachiko and Yumi enjoying tea together and a gentle admonishment that this moment in time is to be enjoyed for itself.

Another delightful book. If it is the last – and it could be – it was wonderful. Time to have a cup of herb tea and think about the best moments we’ve shared with the lovely ladies of Lillian. ^_^

Ratings:

Overall – 9

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20 Responses

  1. Anonymous says:

    I’m so glad to hear that Sachiko and Yumi are still close even after Sachiko has graduated. ^^ Thanks for the review!

    • Maria-Sama-Reader says:

      Well considering how clingy they are in the novels it is to be expected that they would still be close after Sachiko graduation.

      Sachiko even specifically said that she is attending Lillian University just to be closer to Yumi (Volume 22 – Blank Map of the Future – Rose Dialogue).

      I would not be surprised if Yumi attended Lillian University to be with Sachiko after she graduates from high school. If Sachiko did a 4 year degree and Yumi did a 3 year degree that would mean that they would graduate from University together :D.

  2. ragnamuffin says:

    Just a heads up that both Marimite and Oshamite are officially over with the publication of Oshaka-sama mo miteru vol.10 “Hotaru no hikaru.” Hibiki Reine made it explicit over Twitter last November.

    http://kai-you.net/article/1727

      • Anna lucy says:

        Good day. I would like to ask where can I read farewell bouquet of maria sama ga miteru. I love this novel badly:( please reply:(

        • As it states clearly on every page:

          Please do not email or comment asking for or posting links to scanlations or fansubs. Okazu readers overwhelmingly support the artists, writers and publishers of Yuri by buying anime and manga series in English and Japanese.

          You can purchase the book by clicking the link in the article or clicking on the picture.

  3. Tom Hofheinz says:

    Hello, Yuricon.

    I am a 58 year old straight male who is addicted to this series. If it weren’t for occasional translations in light novel “gray” sites, I wouldn’t know anything about developments and I might go nuts.

    In a former life I was a literature scholar specializing in modern narrative. This series attracted me at first because of the brilliance of its writing. Jane Austen would have loved these novels. I think that as a storyteller, this novelist is a major artist.

    I have only read up to “Little Horrors” (something like that). Now, I don’t know what happened to Yumi and co. afterward.

    Among my questions, someone please tell me: Did Yumi ever realize that Sachiko’s bisexual cousin was in love with her?

    Thanks, y’all, and rock on.

    Tom Hofheinz

    • Hi Tom –

      We don’t actually ever know if Kashiwagi is bisexual and he’s not actually in love with Yumi at all. He’s more interested in Yumi’s brother Yuuki. Check out my reviews of the Oshaku-sama mo Miteru series for Yuuki and Kashiwagi’s relationship.

  4. victor says:

    hey there erica

    so, even though there is soo much going on in mariasama, i just wanna know one little thing, which for me is the ultimate thing really

    yumi and sachiko have already said they love each other, they spend soo much time together, understand each other they do and all, but there is still one thing that eludes me, that to me, it simply has to happen, otherwise, being totally subjective here obviously, this whole thing is a fail

    are they dating? do they have a romantic relationship?

    like i said, this is subjective, i know the whole story goes so much deeper in soo many levels and spheres, but to me, even though i appreciate it all, i just need yumi and sachiko to be together, not just as extremely close friends, confidantes.

    they share such a deep bond, filled with both love and emotion, and support, that, for me, they need to be together already, as a couple, and stay that way forever

    and i just wish kashiwagi would just disappear….

    anyhow, so, yumi and sachiko, together as one, as a couple? or i should just forget about it?

    • You need to forget it. Yumi and Sachiko are dear to each other, close as sisters, but not lovers. It’s a story about this relationship – close as sisters – that is the point of almost every relationship in the series. That is why they are “soeur”.

      • victor says:

        well, that’s it for me with marimite then, i simply cannot bare having them as not lovers, my own little bias, i’ve so totally dropped this

        i’ve been following it in the hopes that one day, some day they’d take the plunge, as a matter of speaking, but anyhow, i guess that’s that for that

        i do fully and deeply understand and respect their relationships and other aspects of the story, but i still wanted at least those two as one, but it’s cool, i’ll simmer down

        thanks for the reply Erica, i really appreciate it

  5. Thay says:

    So, this really was the last novel?

  6. Thay says:

    You can tell me if after Sachiko graduation she and Yumi were still near or moved away? And Sachiko appeared very in the novels after your graduation? I live in Brazil so it’s hard to buy or read something related to Maria-sama ga Miteru because the manga and the novels no have been translated here (my English is also horrible)

    • Both of them go to Lillian’s College. So at least for the next few years they will be in the same area. We don’t know anything after that.

      • Thay says:

        Thanks for the answer, this is the last year of Yumi in Lillian? I’m glad to know that the last chapter of the last novel ended with Sachiko and Yumi that is the relationship of sister / friendship that I more loved, I am also happy to know that even after of Sachiko graduation they are still close,so thanks again

  7. Fate says:

    I love marimite so much but i cant read the light novel i dont know japanes and i didnt foun in english to bought so anyone know what happend with sachiko and yumi they end together or they just distance cause now yumi had touko.

    I really ship sachikoxyumi but i know that its impossible but i mean is obvious that she loves so much yumi cause i mean she stayed there just for her.

    And what happend to rei

  8. Lara says:

    Sachiko ended the engagement with Kashiwagi? I remember it was mentioned that they would marry when she graduated in Lilian but it seems that the engagement was interrupted,this is true?

    • Sachiko dissolves the arrangement. It was never a requirement, her parents merely assumed they would get married as Sachiko hung on Kashiwagi when they were young. When she tells her parents, they react like “Oh! Okay.” But it as still hard for her to do it.

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