10 Books/Manga Like March Comes In Like A Lion | TheReviewGeek Recommends

10 Books/Manga Like March Comes In Like A Lion

March Comes In Like A Lion is a phenomenal manga series with a well-crafted narrative and an excellent cast. It’s written and illustrated by Chico Umino and is adored for its excellent stance on mental health awareness. The story follows Rei, an elite shogi player who carries enormous pressure on his back. When three girls enter his life, Rei realizes that life might be worth living. 

If you’re in the mood for more dramatic or slice-of-life-focused books/manga that offer a similar vibe, fear not! We’ve gathered together 10 books/manga to check out when you’ve caught up with March Comes In Like A Lion. Of course, if you feel we’ve missed any of your favorites, do comment below and let us know!

Blue Period – Tsubasa Yamaguchi

Similarities – Characters, Drama, Themes

Blue Period and March Come In Like A Lion are fantastic manga series. Like March Comes In Like A Lion, Blue Period follows a young protagonist’s journey toward self-acceptance and highlights the impact of meaningful relationships. Moreover, both tales focus on their characters’ quest for self-discovery and their inner struggles. 

In Blue Period, we follow Yatora, a boy who questions his life and academic achievements. He’ll eventually find comfort through his artistic endeavors. This mirrors Rei’s journey in March Comes In Like A Lion. Rei will battle his feelings of emptiness and find purpose through his shogi passions and relationships with others. 

Moreover, both tales indicate the impact of significant relationships. Yatora’s interactions with his fellow art enthusiasts, mentors, and family will impact his growth as an artist and individual. This is similar to how Rei’s shogi peers, adoptive family, and friends help him confront his inner demons.

For those after a well-crafted narrative with compelling life lessons, check out Blue Period. 

Honey and Clover – Chica Umino

Similarities – Drama & Themes

March Comes In Like A Lion isn’t the only captivating work from Chica Umino’s catalog. Enter Honey and Clover, another tale that explores themes of self-discovery, friendship, and self-evolution. The story follows Takemoto, an art student who forges multiple connections and struggles to find his purpose in life like Rei. 

Through their experiences, Rei and Takemoto learn valuable lessons about themselves. That said, both series touch upon the importance of establishing connections with others, even if you’re not related by blood. For instance, the bonds Takemoto and his friends forge within their art school setting evoke a sense of encouragement, support, and belonging. 

You’ll adore seeing how each character inspires and challenges one another for growth purposes. This parallels Rei’s actions in March Comes In Like A Lion as he’ll form deep connections to overcome his inner struggles. This assists Rei in moving toward a more fulfilling and balanced life.

If you’re looking for another emotional tale from the same person who brought you March Comes In Like A Lion, check this out. 

A Silent Voice – Yoshitoki Ooima

Similarities – Themes

A Silent Voice offers a poignant tale about redemption, loneliness, and finding comfort through emotional connections. Both protagonists embark on journeys toward self-acceptance and their respective authors do a fine job of giving them enough hurdles to make their successes feel earned.

A Silent Voice revolves around Shoya. He’s a boy who wants to redeem himself for bullying his classmate Shouko. By interacting with Shouko, he gradually learns to forgive himself and accept his flaws. Similarly, Rei struggles with loneliness and abandonment issues but learns to open up and accept who he is thanks to the support he receives from strangers.

If you’re looking for another tale where its protagonist must confront their inner demons to secure a bright future for themselves, check out A Silent Voice. 

Ping Pong – Taiyou Matsumoto

Similarities – Coming-of-Age Stories

Ping Pong and March Comes In Like A Lion share common themes concerning personal growth, self-discovery, and the power behind meaningful relationships. Both narratives beautifully explore their protagonists’ internal journeys to the fullest, leaving audiences with unforgettable experiences they’ll cherish after they’ve finished reading. 

Interestingly, both tales use their respective sports as a metaphor for growth. In Ping Pong, one of its protagonists, Smile, discovers meaning and purpose in his life through his table tennis affairs. As he hones his talent and competes against worthy rivals, we witness him transform from a reserved person to a more confident player. This will remind folks how shogi helps Rei confront his past traumas and find his place in his universe.

Not only will their sports have a profound impact on their direction in life, but the friends Smile and Rei make along the way will steer them toward brighter paths too.

Therefore, Ping Pong is another marvelous story worth reading. 

Chihayafuru – Yuki Suetsugu

Similarities – Characters, Atmosphere, Themes

More emotional sports-themed endeavors await you with Yuki Suetsugu’s Chihayafuru manga. This story follows Chihaya, a girl who gets involved in the world of competitive Karuta play. She’ll join the Shiranami Society and hopes it’ll assist her in becoming the next Queen of Karuta.

Like Rei, Chihaya undergoes significant maturation thanks to the hurdles that stand in her path. She’ll compete in many tournaments and adopt new strategies that’ll help her attain better Karuta and life skills. Pursuing excellence, having unwavering determination, and self-discovery are marvelous themes explored in both works.

In addition to having heartwarming interactions, pleasing illustrations, and excellent protagonists, Chihayafuru is a great manga to read after March Comes In Like A Lion.  

Fruits Basket – Natsuki Takaya

Similarities – Themes & Drama

Fruits Basket is a fantastic tale of healing and one that acknowledges the power of relationships. In Fruits Basket, the protagonist, Tohru, wrestles with grief and feelings of inadequacy. However, through her interactions with the Sohma family, she begins to heal from her past wounds and finds her place within her respective universe. 

This mirrors Rei’s predicament in March Comes In Like A Lion greatly. He’ll have his own share of demons he’ll need to conquer. Through his experiences with friends and his adoptive family, Rei attains the strength necessary to move forward with his life. Both tales also emphasize the healing power of empathy and understanding. 

The Sohma family are cursed individuals, unlike Tohru. However, they’re willing to set their own issues aside to provide Tohru with enough support and love to guide her down a joyful path. This is similar to how Rei has his share of issues but learns to understand and empathize with his friend’s and adoptive family’s issues.

If you’re after another tale of family and hardship, Fruits Basket is worth adding to your reading list. 

Hikaru No Go – Yumi Hotta

Similarities – Life Lessons & Themes

For a more lighthearted read that’s mainly targeted toward children, we’d like to recommend Hikaru No Go. Despite its difference in tone, this tale offers valuable lessons about pursuing your passions, establishing strong connections, and personal growth.

In Hikaru No Go, Hikaru stumbles upon a supernatural connection with a ghost named Fujiwara. This aids him in developing a passion for the game of Go. As he delves deeper into the game, he’ll discover his true talents and learn more about his inner self. Hikaru’s journey of self-discovery mirrors Rei’s shogi journey thematically. As he plays, he’ll uncover his own strengths and weaknesses. Additionally, he’ll see value in forging personal relationships, allowing him to become more self-aware. 

On top of both works underlining the importance of hard work and perseverance, Hikaru No Go is a compelling read and one that should keep March Comes In Like A Lion fans satisfied. 

Goodnight Punpun – Inio Asano

Similarities – Mental Health Awareness & Drama

Goodnight Punpun can be a difficult series to recommend to newcomers. It’s mainly due to the story being a bottomless pit of sadness with no brightness in sight. However, like March Comes In Like A Lion, it’s a tale everyone needs to read at least once, to understand why many believe it’s a masterful piece of fiction.

As far as similarities go, both feature leads who embark on quests of self-discovery. In Goodnight Punpun, Punpun struggles with feelings of emptiness and searches for meaning and purpose in his life. As the tale unfolds, we witness his inner turmoil and his attempts to find solace in living. Punpun’s inner struggles will remind folks of Rei’s issues with grappling with his past traumas and experiences despite being a profound shogi player. 

Both mangas examine the profound impact of mental health’s effects on their protagonists’ lives. Punpun struggles with severe anxiety, depression, and a distorted sense of reality. This leads him to perform various stunts that’ll rub audiences the wrong way. As for Rei, he’ll battle his own set of psychological and emotional challenges that’ll help him grow. 

Your Lie In April – Naoshi Arakawa

Similarities – Characters, Drama, Themes

If you’re okay with a story with similar ideas but lean heavily into the music side of things, Your Lie In April should appeal to you. It tackles loss and shows how much of a toll it has on people who’ve experienced it.

Our tale follows the dispassionate pianist Kousei, who can’t seem to regain his love for playing the instrument because of his mother’s death. Fortunately, Kaori, a talented violinist, enters Kousei’s life and helps him regain the strength and courage necessary to give his piano another go.

Like March Comes In Like A Lion, this tale is filled with glorious drama, beautiful illustrations, and excellent character-driven segments that’ll make you smile and cry. It provides readers with an excellent depiction of depression and showcases the transformative impact friendship can have on a person’s livelihood.

Give it a read if you need another emotional tear-jerker to binge after March Comes In Like A Lion. 

Silver Spoon – Hiromu Arakawa

Similarities – Characters & Themes

From the creator of Fullmetal Alchemist, comes their more laid-back yet insightful work, Silver Spoon. It may appear different from March Comes In Like A Lion at first glance, but it shares many common story elements and themes with it. For instance, both tales wonderfully showcase their leads’ strive for growth and excellence. 

In Silver Spoon, Yuugo, a city boy who enrolls in an Agricultural High School, initially struggles to adjust to its rural environment. However, as he immerses himself in farming, he discovers new skills, makes strong connections, and learns more about himself. This echoes how Rei slowly uncovers his own identity and learns to rely on others for help despite having great shogi skills. 

Yuugo and Rei are passionate individuals in their tales too. While Yuugo becomes more dedicated to mastering farmer etiquette, Rei makes significant sacrifices in hopes of achieving mastery of his craft.

With their shared focus on establishing healthy human connections and passion, Silver Spoon and March Comes In Like A Lion are phenomenal manga series you shouldn’t overlook. 

So there we have it, our 10 books/manga to read after you’re caught up with March Comes In Like A Lion. 

What do you think of our picks? Do you agree? Are there any notable omissions? Let us know in the comments below!

Click Here To Check Out More Book & Manga Content!

Leave a comment