Review: Higurashi Volume 24 – Festival Accompanying Arc 3 / Author: Ryukishi07 / Artist: Karin Suzuragi / Publisher: Yen press / Release Date: Out Now
This is it – the final story arc of Higurashi. All secrets are revealed and all the main characters get their moment in the spotlight. Everything has been building towards this final showdown.
Beginning as a twisted, grotesque variation on the classic tropes of a harem manga, over a course of years Higurashi gradually introduced readers to a cast of teenagers cursed to struggle against their fate in myriad retellings of the same bloody tale. From humble love stories and cases of mistaken identity to domestic abuse and demonic possession, the growth of Higurashi is subtle and nuanced, each new chapter answering questions and hinting at the dark forces behind the scenes in Hinamizawa.
Festival Accompanying Arc, the final act, is possibly the worst jumping on point that any new reader could ask for, but anybody that has been following the plot will be thrilled to see Akasaka's return, Oishi's dilemma and Hanyu's resolve to finally participate.
This is the third, massive volume of the final story arc, and I was absolutely convinced when I started reading it that this would be the last volume, but I was very wrong. When the book ends we still don't know Rika's ultimate fate, meaning that there's at least one volume left to go. The wait is killing me!