Isekai is everywhere nowadays, with tons of light novels, manga and anime all striving to come up with different ways to send people to another world. The result is usually a rebirth into a medieval fantasy world where they become a great warrior, a monster or even a vending machine, in one case. That's not the case with Ascendance of a Bookworm, however.
Featuring a librarian reborn in a world without books, Ascendance of a Bookworm is a franchise that's yet to end in any medium, literary or otherwise. Not only are the light novels and manga still coming out and being localized, but the anime will be getting a third season in the next year. Here's what the series is about and how to best enjoy the fan-favorite isekai no matter what medium you prefer.
The Plot of Ascendance of a Bookworm
The story follows Urano Motosu, a librarian who is ironically crushed to death by books during an earthquake. This literary equivalent to Truck-kun sends her to a world where books are actually very rare, an inversion of her last wish to find a place where she could read books forever. In this medieval world, printed knowledge is a luxury of the elites, something that Urano, now reborn as a small girl named Myne, cannot abide by.
Drawing upon all of the knowledge she retained from her old life, Myne sets out to write and print her own books so that she can finally achieve her dream of doing nothing but reading. This quest to be a librarian in a world with basically no books is further challenged by Myne's new body, which is afflicted by a disease that gives her horrible fevers whenever she's pushed too far. Myne's attempts at bookish revolution are also somewhat held back by her occasional lack street smarts and common sense.
Where to Read the Ascendance of a Bookworm Light Novels & Manga
Ascendance of a Bookworm started as a web novel series by Miya Kazuki back in 2013, which lasted until 2017 and was collected into 27 volumes. This was later adapted into a light novel series and a manga, both of which are still ongoing. The adaptations, like the original series, will have five parts, with the light novels already at this point.
Basic physical/online retailers such as Barnes & Noble, Books-a-Million, Amazon and Right Stuf Anime carry the light novels and the manga, with Comixology also having digital versions of both. Many of the volumes are not yet translated, however, so now's a good time to get caught up with the series.
Where to Watch the Ascendance of a Bookworm Anime
Aija-do Animation Works, known for works such as fellow isekai anime How Not to Summon a Demon Lord, is the studio behind the Ascendance of a Bookworm anime. The series began in 2019, and so far has two seasons and two OVA specials, amounting to a total of 26 episodes. A third season of the anime is also on the way, and it's meant to release in April of 2022.
In English, the series is distributed by Sentai Filmworks and Crunchyroll, and it can be streamed through the Crunchyroll and VRV services. Sentai Filmworks also sells the physical Blu-Ray collection on their website, as does Amazon, Play Tech Asia, Right Stuf Anime and Best Buy. Even if it isn't a book, fans who want to ascend to the franchise may find watching the anime of Ascendance of a Bookworm easier.