The Fandom Post

Anime, Movies, Comics, Entertainment & More

Strike the Blood Vol. #03 Novel Review

4 min read

Strike the Blood Novel 3 CoverCastaway from a well developed plot

Creative Staff
Story: Gakuto Mikumo
Illustrations: Manyako
Translation: Jeremiah Bourque

What They Say
Kojou and Yukina join forces with Natsuki Minamiya to protect Itogami City from a new threat from the skies — but even Kojou’s Beast Vassal can’t take this new foe on, and who should rescue them from their predicament but Kojou’s sister’s friend, a silver-haired girl named Kanon Kanase! But when Kanon disappears, Kojou and Yukina may find that there are some problems not even the world’s mightiest vampire can solve!

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
We get a rather strong prologue this time around, showing some demons attacking an imperial airship, bringing it down with some sort of strange, twisted angel. And with that action out of the way, things slow down a ton. To summarize, Asagi and Kojou do plenty of back and forth flirting stuff, and our hero thinks a guy confesses his love to Nagisa, leading to him being awkwardly overprotective. The net point is that all this leads to Kojou meeting the new character for the volume, Kanon. And we actually don’t get much time to know her, as we pretty much just learn that she’s pretty and tries to take care of stray kittens, and that’s about it.

The action kicks up when we learn of battles between mysterious “Masked” girls, who are the artificial angels shown from the start. And thanks to Natsuki, Kojou and Yukina get dragged into battle while trying to stop two of them clashing. The resulting battle is appropriately intense and is easily a high point of the volume, with it mainly pushing the point that none of the attacks of our characters having any effect! But yeah, one of them takes down the other and literally tears out and eat her organs, and unsurprisingly, it’s revealed that she’s Kanon. But yeah, her duty done, she pulls back and mercifully leaves our heroes alive.

And following up on this, Yukina and Kojou go off to investigate Kanon, and find that she’s tied to a certain corporation. And thus they fall for a rather dumb trap, getting flown to a deserted island and getting off the plane, and apparently just sort of standing there as it took off. You’d think they would manage to do something about that, but apparently not. And then we get a section of the two being stranded there that somehow manages to both take up too many pages and also not even exploit the scenario. Like, nothing really happens with the whole set-up at all, which is weird.

Finally, we’re introduced to the princess known as La Folia from the downed airship at the start of the volume who is related to Kanon, and the finale gets rolling. Kanon evolves into a true Faux Angel or whatever and the villains come to gloat, Yukina gets her token fight, Kamijou needs to suck blood to get control of a new Beast Vassal that seems to be exclusively made for this battle, and we even get some bonus little faux angels brought into the battle to do nothing (just like with the things from last volume)! It’s all a bit formulaic, and it’s a shame that it doesn’t feel like they even bothered to change things up a little. Oh, and there’s a really awkward attempt of trying to halfheartedly justify the villain’s action, but all we know of him is the sickening thing he did, and an incredibly underdeveloped “but he did it out of love!” that falls impossibly flat. Like, the book just kind of throws that at you and rolls with it, not even trying to back it up, and it doesn’t work in the slightest.

In Summary
With this book, we’re treated once more to something that shows potential but fails to live up to it. At least on paper the villains seem like they’d be interesting, and there’s setup here that looks to further expand the world of the story. But instead, we just get a whole lot of half-baked ideas in a worn framework. Probably the biggest issue here is the new characters, who get almost no development whatsoever, though the book likes to act like they do. We get the barest minimum explanations, and then in turn the writing acts as though we’re supposed to understand and be interested in these characters, but there’s so little about them that it just doesn’t work. We also get some halfhearted romance at the start which, once more, goes absolutely nowhere and feels like a waste of time. And then you can add to that a setup which the book straight up doesn’t do anything with, apparently due to those scenes being cut, at least according to the afterword. So essentially a good chunk of time is spent effectively just setting up the place for the final battle, I guess. And then to top it off, the finale feels incredibly by the books, and effectively works out to a slightly less interesting version of what happened in the last volume. It functions as a book and it does do the bare minimum, but it really does feel lacking in a ton of ways. So though it may not be terrible, it also feels like a real waste of potential, and something that’s hard to give a firm recommendation. Maybe one day the series will really come into its own, but sadly that certainly doesn’t happen here.

Content Grade: B-
Art Grade: N/A
Packaging Grade: B+
Text/Translation Grade: B+

Age Rating: 13+
Released By: Yen Press
Release Date: May 24th, 2016
MSRP: $14.00

Liked it? Take a second to support the site on Patreon!