6 reasons why “No.6” inspired me so much

No.6 is a novel series, anime and manga that I discovered in 2011 and, as you can see here, it was one of the things that inspired me the most for creating my book “Back in the rain“.

Here 6 reasons why:

1. The setting

“No.6” is a dystopian city where people’s lives are controlled by the government. Those inside the city walls live an -apparently- normal life; they have jobs, comforts and advanced technology, even though they are taught not to ask too many questions and just do whatever they are supposed to do. Outside the walls, on the other side, it’s kill or get killed.

In a review I got on Goodreads, somebody defined the setting of “Back in the rain” as a dystopian future, too. Even though I don’t consider my book’s setting to be dystopian at all, I was somehow inspired by the idea of a city like No.6, that is like a small, independent country where the contrast between wealth/control/technology and poverty/freedom/anarchy is strongly highlighted. That is how I got my first idea for the city of Rosedeer.

2. Nezumi

What can I say? Love at first sight.

At the beginning of the story Nezumi comes to Shion’s rescue, he looks strong, his heart hardened by what No.6 has done to him and his clan. He’s the one that tells Shion to pull himself together and shows him how life on the other side of the wall is like. But he’s just so much more than that. Nezumi is good, honest and despite everything, still strangely pure.

Last but not least, his delicate appearance, white skin and the contrast between his grey eyes and dark hair make him totally my type.

3. The encounter

Nezumi and Shion met when they were just small kids, they were together just for one night, but that was enough for the bond between them to become unbreakable. Nezumi could never forget Shion’s kindness and the risk he took for him offering him shelter in his house. Shion could never forget the thrill and the danger he felt when he saw Nezumi for the first time, as well as the need for human contact Nezumi showed him. The two of them were exactly what the other needed and they just kept longing all their life for the moment they’d meet again.

4. The relationship

What is going on between Nezumi and Shion is not easy to define. They care for each other, to the point they almost seem obsessed – especially Shion. They want to protect each other, but at the same time they expect the other to always stay the same and, inevitably, their certainties break.

While Shion is able to bring out the best in Nezumi and make him less guarded and hurt, Nezumi is scared of what Shion is capable of doing for him. Shion is not the kind, pure boy Nezumi had imagined. Is Nezumi right to keep his distance, or being separated will just slowly destroy all the humanity Shion has inside?

5. The mystery

Nine books! It’s impossible to describe in one post how deep this story is.

No matter how amazing the relationship between Nezumi and Shion might be, No.6 is not a BL. It revolves around a well-developed mystery with some pretty heavy themes and sub-plots. This suffered considerably in the anime, so for a better understanding of the story I suggest reading the books and the manga.

6. The ending

I don’t want to spoil anything, but the ending of No.6 is the reason why I decided that my stories will only have happy endings.


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