Story: Magica Quartet
Translation: William Flanagan
What They Say
Tart presses onward in her quest to reach the Dauphin, the disinherited heir of France, and help restore him to the throne and thus her country to a state of peace. Her reputation as a fearless warrior and bringer of light has drawn loyal supporters who would stand and fight against England and the Duke of Burgundy. Tart’s power grows, both as a beacon of hope and as a magical girl, but a country girl cannot hope to wield such power without facing opposition and consequences…
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
The volume actually launches itself off to a strong start by showing the three villainous magical girl sisters absolutely obliterating the troops of Orleans. It’s a nice show of power, though the key characters of the commander Jean de Dunois and the mercenary La Hire manage to slip away from the field of battle. Unfortunately, though, that ends the excitement for quite a while, and we instead get a ton of history and slooooow progression as Tart heads to meet the Dauphin. At the very least we do get a little bit of a witch fight inserted, but the book definitely does drag at this point.
When she does reach the Dauphin, Charles, he tries to play a trick on her by trading places with another in order to fool her. And it admittedly is kind of neat to see Cube’s whispering to her revealing the plot, and in turn convincing everyone that she is indeed a messenger of God with an angel at her side. We also get a character introduction in the form of Melissa, La Hire’s daughter and a servant who’s assigned to Tart, and also someone Cube says has magical girl potential.
As the volume continues on, Melissa becomes more of a part of the group, Tart gets a special sword to better use her powers, and some little silly bits also occur. And admittedly, when one of the sisters, Corbeau, joins the battle, we do actually get a decent little fight (though it unfortunately is only at the absolute tail end of the book). Will the addition of a powered up Melissa be enough to take down this powerful foe, our are our heroines doomed?
While the first volume had a good bit to play with, with this second entry it feels like we’ve hit a sort of dull middle point of the series. Certainly some things do happen, but there really isn’t much of note here, and a lot of the volume is spent on dull history lessons, travel, and minor skirmishes. In fact, it’s only really the absolute beginning and end of the book that have much of note. The volume does start with a nice bit of brutality to show off the villains, and the ending has a legitimately interesting fight. Unfortunately, though, the middle just kind of dips completely, and is content trotting out historical figures and explaining factoids, making it largely quite dull. Still, there’s plenty of potential left in the future of the series, so with any luck this will just be a lull before things pick up once more. For now, though, readers are left with an unfortunately dull book, and one that’s hard to recommend for anyone who isn’t really interested in the subject matter at hand.
Content Grade: B-
Art Grade: A-
Packaging Grade: A-
Text/Translation Grade: A-
Age Rating: Older Teen
Released By: Yen Press
Release Date: November 17th, 2015