In the Clear Moonlit Dusk Volume 4 Review

When we last saw Yoi and Ichimaru, their relationship trial was approaching the end, and Yoi was beginning to realise she had feelings for Ichimaru. However, when Ichimaru became jealous of a handsome new part-timer Takuto working alongside Yoi, a rift opened up between the two. Will they be able to put it behind them? Let’s find out with Volume 4! 

As we reunite with our cast, we find them just days away from the Summer Festival, which Yoi had been eager to invite Ichimaru to before his jealous outburst in front of Takuto. Now she’s missed her chance and worse still, Ichimaru is avoiding her. The closer they get, the more difficult it’s becoming to communicate clearly and Yoi can’t help but wonder if they’re a good fit for one another. 

Even when Yoi asks Ichimaru to walk home with her after school, they’re interrupted when Takuto calls her about work and Ichimaru once again gets jealous. The two fight and Yoi once again misses her chance to invite Ichimaru out. The way things are going, this could be the end of their whole relationship! 

Unable to communicate with each other properly, our duo end up talking to their friends about the situation. For Yoi, she turns to her older sister who tells her that Yoi shouldn’t just wait around for things to fix themselves or she could lose out on Ichimaru entirely – particularly when they’re in a ‘trial’ period which could end at any time. 

Meanwhile, Ichimaru thinks that if this is the end of their time together, that’s simply the way it was destined to go. After all, he sees himself as a fickle person who always moves on from relationships in quick succession. However, Ichimaru’s friends see things differently and point out that the way he’s acted with Yoi is different to all his previous girlfriends and to them, it looked as if he really liked her for once. With those friends supporting them, could the pair make amends in time for the festival? 

So far In the Clear Moonlit Dusk has done a good job of developing Yoi and Ichimaru equally; at this point they’re fleshed out with plenty of depth. But all the same, I appreciate that author Mika Yamamori chose to sideline Yoi for large portions of this volume and instead focuses on Ichimaru.

It’s easy to understand why Ichimaru has struggled with relationships so far, he’s often asked out by girls who are interested in him for his family’s wealth or his princely looks. Ultimately that’s why he’s so indifferent to getting close to others, but also why his relationship with Yoi is so special. They’ve both been through similar hardships so they understand one another on a level that Ichimaru’s other girlfriends haven’t been able to. I also appreciate that Yamamori treats Ichimaru’s jealousy with delicacy, not using it to drive a wedge between the duo unfairly but instead building on the insecurities we’ve known these characters harbour from the beginning. 

Not far into Volume 4, Yoi yells at Ichimaru for saying he’s jealous as she’s not used to being told that and doesn’t know how to respond to it, but Ichimaru refutes that he’s also not used to feeling like this. It’s a very genuine exchange and yes the two are riled up, but it’s easy to sympathise with their feelings and understand how we got to this point. And that’s ultimately what makes In the Clear Moonlit Dusk such a heartfelt shojo series because it doesn’t rely on tropes or manufactured drama, it just follows these two characters as their relationship naturally progresses. And it’s not dragged out either, rest assured that one way or another a resolution to this situation has been reached by the end of this volume. 

In the Clear Moonlit Dusk Volume 4 comes to the West thanks to Kodansha and this volume sees translation switch hands from Jessica Latherow to Sawa Matsueda Savage while lettering continues to be handled by Lys Blakeslee. There are no problems with the translation and it’s in keeping with the previous volumes while continuing to include translation notes at the back of the book. 

Volume 5 of the series is available now in English with Volume 6 currently scheduled for release in December. Releases are slowing down considerably now we’re catching up to Japan who are also only at Volume 6 at the time of writing. 

Overall, Volume 4 of In the Clear Moonlit Dusk dives into the insecurities of our two main characters as their budding relationship hits its first major bump in the road. As we’ve come to expect, author Mika Yamamori has crafted a storyline that’s sure to keep you turning the pages while you root for the two main characters. 

Our review copy from Kodansha was supplied by Diamond Book Distributors UK. 

9 / 10


When she's not watching anime, reading manga or reviewing, Demelza can generally be found exploring some kind of fantasy world and chasing her dreams of being a hero.

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