Natsume’s Book of Friends follows the adventures of Takashi Natsume who, like his grandmother Reiko, has the ability to see spirits. After Reiko dies Takashi inherits her “Book of Friends” which catalogues each of the spirits which Reiko had come into contact with and pressed into servitude. However, Takashi is a little more kind-hearted than his grandmother and decides to work on freeing each of the creatures she had previously made contracts with and caring for the spirits which come to him for help. Throughout his quest, Takashi is aided by his “bodyguard” and advisor Madara - also nicknamed Nyanko-sensei because he takes on a form resembling a classic maneki-neko.
Natsume’s Book of Friends started out as a hit manga series written and illustrated by Yuki Midorikawa published by Hakusensha and serialised firstly in the shoujo manga magazine LaLa DX before switching to LaLa in 2008. The series was also adapted into a popular TV anime by Brain’s Base broadcast on TV Tokyo from 2008 to 2012.