Ascendance of a Bookworm is a Japanese fantasy light novel series written by Miya Kazuki and illustrated by Yū Shiina. It was serialized online between September 2013 and March 2017 on the user-generated novel publishing website Shōsetsuka ni Narō. It was later acquired by TO Books, who has published 25 volumes since January 2015.
A manga adaptation of the first part with art by Suzuka was serialized online via Niconico Seiga website between October 2015 and July 2018. It was collected in seven tankōbon volumes by TO Books. Both the light novel and manga are published in English by J-Novel Club. An anime television series adaptation by Ajia-do Animation Works premiered the first part from October 3 to December 26, 2019, with the second part airing from April 5 to June 21, 2020. A two-part OVA episode released on March 10, 2020. A third season has been announced.
The story follows Motosu Urano, a book-loving post-secondary student and soon-to-be librarian who ends up crushed to death beneath a pile of books during an earthquake. With her dying breath, she wishes to be reincarnated in a world where she can read books forever. Urano awakens in the body of a weak, five-year-old girl named Myne in a world where books are scarce and only available to elites. Myne, retaining her memories from her previous life, decides to create and print her own books so that she can read again.
It was originally published by Miya Kazuki as a free-to-read web novel on Shōsetsuka ni Narō in 2013 until it was acquired by TO Books which published the first volume in print in their TO Bunko imprint with illustrations by Yū Shiina in January 2015. As of June 2020, the series will have accumulated over 23 volumes, divided into five parts.
A manga adaptation was published by TO Books and follows similar format as the novels. Part 1, subtitled If there aren’t any books, I’ll just have to make some!, was illustrated by Suzuka, serialized in Comic Corona from October 2015 to July 2018, and was compiled into a total of seven volumes. Suzuka continued to illustrate Part 2 subtitled Become a Shrine Maiden for Books! which began serialization in Comic Corona on September 24, 2018 and currently has a total of three volumes. Part 3 subtitled Spread the Book on your Territory! is illustrated by Ryo Namino and began serialization in Comic Corona despite Part 1 still being ongoing at the time. Part 3 currently has three volumes.
Five fan books were published by TO Books and released on March 10, 2017; December 9, 2017; November 10, 2018; January 10, 2020; and November 10, 2020. TO Books has also published four Drama CDs that were released on September 9, 2017; June 9, 2018; June 10, 2019; and December 10, 2019.
The light novel series has over 1 million copies in print. The series ranked fifth in 2017 and first in 2018 and 2019 in Takarajimasha’s annual light novel guide book Kono Light Novel ga Sugoi!, in the tankōbon category.