Follow TV Tropes
This review is mostly for the book, though it can apply to both the manga and the anime movie.
Not gonna lie, I really didn't like this one. At all. I checked it out mostly because I wanted to see what all the hubbub around it was. It pretty much met my low expectations and then some. It's yet another typical "bland boy meets sick but cheery girl who's about to die and learns about the beauty of life from her before she dies beautifully" story, similar to Love Story and The Fault in Our Stars. It makes no effort to do anything new with the premise, every single character is completely bland and one-note, Sakura is portrayed as this saintly being who finds profundity in her terminal illness to the point of reducing her to little more than inspiration porn, and anyone actually dealing with a terminal illness can tell you that this whole thing rings completely false. The male lead is especially bad in that he's about as three-dimensional as a slab of wood, with no personality nor character, and somehow in the end he magically becomes a person and shows emotion just because he met this one girl? Uh, no. That doesn't happen IRL.
Honestly, I think the book would have been so much better had it actually delved more into Sakura's illness and showed in detail her having to deal with it, like with treatment or how it effects her life as a whole. But instead, we're only given cursory glances of it and what little insecurities she has about her disease are merely glossed over. Also, the twist ending. My God, that twist ending is absolutely the worst thing about this book, namely because not only does it render everything about Sakura's ordeal completely pointless, I feel like the author did it just so they can avoid having to portray Sakura's disease in a nuanced, non-stereotypical way, and doing so rendered her disease to be little more than window dressing, and that's just piss-poor writing! It just completely ruined everything, rendering the whole book pointless, and it further reduces Sakura to little more than a saintly piece of inspiration porn.
Overall, it's a poorly written, condescending, patronizing after school special that has zero substance. Find something better that actually handles childhood cancer much better.
Community Showcase More