Spice and Wolf
She-Wolf and Spices is a popular Japanese light novel series written by Isuna Hasekura, with illustrations by Ju Ayakura. In 2007, the number of copies sold, according to Mainichi Shimbun, exceeded 500 thousand, and in 2008 – already 2.2 million copies. In total, 22 volumes of “light novels” were released (14 main and eight “side stories”, which are called Side Colors and Spring Log). Despite the official end of the series on Volume 17, the fall of 2016 continued the release of both the spin-off of the Spice and Wolf storyline (collections of stories from Spring Log) and the sequel to The Wolf and Parchment. As of April 2021, both series have 5 volumes. Despite the fact that Spice and Wolf is written in the fantasy genre, it stands out from other works of this genre, since the heroes mostly revolve in the world of trade and commodity-money relations, and not in the world of sword and magic.
The manga drawn by Keito Koume was published in Dengeki Maoh magazine from September 2007 to December 2017, and the anime based on the novels was shown in 2008. Later, according to the plot of the work, a video game in the genre of “dating simulator” was released for the Nintendo DS platform. Also, at the beginning of 2019, a VR game from the Spicy Tails studio was announced.
It is interesting to note some inconsistency in the title of the series. In Japanese, the work is called that is, “She-wolf and spices” (or rather, “wolf”, Japanese nouns do not have a gender category). In the English title (you can see it on the same official website), these words go in reverse order, that is, “Spices and the Wolf” (the original “light novels” have no English translation of the title, but all 17 volumes have a different subtitle in English language: “Merchant meats spicy wolf”). Existing unofficial translations of the anime contain both one and the other word order. The official Russian translation is She-Wolf and Spices.
Kraft Lawrence is a twenty-five-year-old itinerant merchant who dreams of saving money to set up his own store. For seven years now, he has traveled the cities, gaining experience in the trade. One day he meets a pagan deity, the she-wolf Holo, who is over 600 years old. She looks like a young girl with wolf ears and a tail and appears to be the patron deity of the harvest. Holo spent many years in the Pasro village, but progress does not stand still, and the locals no longer need her patronage. Therefore, the she-wolf decides to return to her native places, and Lawrence helps her in this, accompanying her to the north, to her homeland.
List of characters
Kraft Lawrence is a 25-year-old itinerant merchant who makes a living by buying and selling in various cities. When he was twelve, he became a student of his relative, a former merchant, and at eighteen began his journey and an independent life. His dream and goal is to save enough money and open his own store, and for 7 years he has been striving for it, gaining experience in trading. One day he meets Holo and agrees to take her with him, help her get to the north, her homeland. Holo helps him along the way, giving wise advice and using heightened wolfish feelings. Gradually, as they progress, both Lawrence and Holo show mutual intensifying feelings, affection and concern for each other. Although Lawrence rarely shows his feelings and feelings for Holo, he nonetheless truly cares about her. Together they not only get out of many unpleasant situations, but also increase their money capital. Holo is dear to Lawrence, but he tries not to openly show his feelings. Lawrence is very kind, calculating and sensible. He mentioned that he was attacked by wolves eight times in his life. Finally, at the end of the series, Kraft Lawrence openly confesses his love to Holo, sacrificing her dream for her at that stage, and she reciprocates.
Seiyu: Jun Fukuyama is a she-wolf, deity of the harvest, originally from the northern lands called Yois. She made a deal with the people of Pasro town and village, promising to ensure a good wheat harvest every year. But time passed, and the inhabitants of the city and the village began to believe in Holo less and less, and no longer hoped for it, as they once did. For this reason, Holo decided to leave the village, hiding in the wheat in the cart of the itinerant trader Lawrence, and return north to the place where she was born and which she considers her home. Holo travels with Lawrence from city to city, along the way helping his companion to solve various problems (although sometimes they are caused by her). Holo takes the form of a young girl with wolf ears and a long fluffy tail. She can also take on her true form – a huge she-wolf, instilling fear in people.