Houseki no Kuni
Title ID:
10749
Alt name(s):
  • Country of Jewels
  • Il Regno delle Gemme
  • L'Ère des Cristaux
  • Land of the Lustrous
  • Mücevher Ülkesi
  • Negara Permata
  • Reino de Gemas
  • Страна самоцветов
  • 宝石の国
  • 보석의 나라
Author:
Artist:
Demographic:
Rating:
  • 9.22
  • 9.28
  • 1,367
Pub. status:
Ongoing
Stats:
  • 720,363
  • 15,267
  • 457
Description:
In the distant future, a new life form called Houseki (gems) are born. The 28 Houseki must fight against the moon dwellers who want to attack them and turn them into decorations, thus each gem is assigned a role such as a fighter or a medic. Though they hope to fight the moon dwellers, Phos is a gem who is given no assignment until the gems' master Adamantine asks them to write an encyclopedia.

  • Nominated for the 8th Manga Taisho Awards in 2014.
  • Official:
    Reading progress:
    • Volume 0/?
    • Chapter 0/?

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    everything phos did was playing into that ugly moon man's plan.

    i want to suck him into a vacuum cleaner and block the house and other exits so he can't get out
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    >it's fucking nothing
    >ichikawa is going to delay another 5 years
    i would like to die
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    I feel like this is a second-to-last arc, where everything is going to hit the absolute low before it can get any better.
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    Watching these character act out these unspoken frustrations one has is easily one of the most gratifying reading experiences I've had.

    The amount of characterization the gems get is so satisfying.
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    @soc11 I was at work
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    @anoman read latest chapter for answers virgin
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    Lord Vader has arrived
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    Why is Alex so comically useless? How is it possible that Phos is simultaneously totally incompetent yet somehow the most competent of all gems?
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    @jaw20 No, what I meant to convey was what I think as the reason Adamant is BROKEN, which in his own words manifests in his actual inability, not just unwillingness, to restart the prayer cycle. The original reason he stopped his prayers was because of his desire to be with the Gems, like you said. However, up until that point in time the prayer system was still functioning the way it was meant to do. It was meant to send ONLY the Lunarians into oblivion, and that was what it was doing until Adamant broke the cycle. If he had restarted the prayer back then, perhaps things would have turned out okay for the Lunarians and the Gems. However, ADAMANT would also have perished at the completion of his duties, so it was ultimately his selfish desire to be with the Gems that caused all the problems. Adamant stopping the original prayer cycle was what had caused the energy to build up so that a prayer now would wipe out all three races. Aechmea knows this explicitly and still wants to go ahead anyway. Adamant is subconsciously aware of it, which is why he is now broken. Instead of not wanting to continue the prayer because he got distracted by the Gems, now he simply can't because there's a mental block built up from his need to protect the Gems. Basically, this was all his own fault for falling into his own desire and inadvertently turning himself into a weapon of total extinction.

    As for the Gems' impact on the Lunarians, it's much deeper than you seem to think. The people of the flesh are mortal, so they just live according to what nature gives them. The Lunarians and the Gems are both immortal but represent two opposing approaches to immortality. To the Lunarians, their desire for oblivion comes from their eternal boredom and pain from being perfect immortal souls yet living exactly like the flawed original humans did, constantly looping around repeating their ancient follies. The Gems are different in that, while being equally immortal, they could start anew unburdened by the sins of humanity. They love life and continue to strive to make the best of it, staying eternally positive and beautiful. They can accept the pain and continue to make space for each other in their lives. The Gems were born immortal and knew how to live fulfilling immortal lives. Even the stupid civil war the Gems are having now is predicated on the idea that if Phos' side won by breaking to pieces all the Gems on Earth, ALL the Gems would be restored at the end by the victors, and except for Phos all the Gems from the moon would also be restored by their Earthen brethren if they lost. This is the attitude of immortal beings for whom death is alien and life is the ultimate goal; even war is just a tool for settling differences without cost. Phos just doesn't realize yet (because Aechmea is being a dick) that the Gems would also be wiped out by Adamant's prayer.

    When the Gems were transplanted to the moon, they brought with them their eternal optimism and beauty and reinvigorated Lunarian society in ways only they could. They taught the Lunarians how to live as immortals the way they themselves have always lived, and Lunarian society changed dramatically. This is even visible in the aesthetics of their city. The current city looks like the Gems' city on Earth instead of the idealized Buddhist paradise the Lunarians originally had. The surfaces are built in stark angles or curving minimalist arches, representing Lunarian society's adoption of Gem culture. The problem is that the Lunarians themselves haven't figured this out. The idea of seeking oblivion have been so deeply ingrained over the millennia that they just automatically embrace it without asking themselves whether they actually wanted to. That's why there was a sigh of relief when Aechmea marked the false alarm and everyone went straight back to what they were doing before.
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    @Xh30 Ah, is it out? And is it reasonably caught up? I was under the incorrect impression it wasn't, but maybe I will.
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    @Fari
    If that bothers you, just read the official translation.
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    Loved the anime, want to love the manga, but the fact at least the earlier translations can't respect the gender the author set for the characters, and I hear the later chapters don't either, really ruins it.

    The gems are not he, the gems are not she, the author has explicitly stated this. Why's it so hard? I get why some other languages have problems but the English translations should be a bit more competent than that because they can be.
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    @sssr
    The reason why Adamant can't pray is much more simple than you think. He has developed an ego, with his own desires, which directly contradicts the role he has to play. He can easily end the suffering of everyone by praying and removing them from existence to eternal nothingness, but he can't because he can't let go of his desire to be with the gems. The lunarians most definitely still desire nothingness, it's just the gems being on the moon made their own suffering a little more bearable, but in the end they are still suffering.
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    Okay, so here's a thought.

    Adamant is broken not because there's something wrong with the prayer system but because he subconsciously knows that something's wrong with the prayer system. That is, Adamant subconsciously knows that the prayer system is bound to overload and his prayer would wipe out all life, so he stops the prayer from starting every time without really knowing why. This means Aechmea is the real asshole because he's pushing for extinction despite the fact that moon civilization already CHANGED with the arrival of the Gems. The whole reason for the death wish of the Lunarians was their eternal boredom and continued failure to avoid repeating past mistakes. However, the Gems already fixed that. All the Gems have had a deep influence on Lunarian way of life, from giving them a princess and an idol, to providing a purpose for their scientific research, to something as simple as reinventing skater culture. There is no longer any need for the prayer. Only Aechmea really desires it at this point, knowing full well why Adamant subconsciously rejects it.
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    I agree that it's got more boring as it went on. It's transparently a Buddhist allegory about how attachment to desires brings suffering. It might be a little unfair to say that a slavish devotion to that allegory has warped the story, because obviously it was the initial premise. But as the allegory became more transparent the story felt more and more artificial, it really ruined the suspension of disbelief for me.
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    this is so hype
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    @HenrykDodwel I think it just keeps getting more and more interesting, personally.
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    @HenrykDodwel like which part that it got worse ?
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    I'm glad that stopped anime at the first season. To be fair, the story now is way worse and i feel disappointed about how it went.
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    Yes Phos. Put them to dust. Make em dust. Put them in their OWN dust