Story: Yuu Miyazaki
Translation: Melissa Tanaka
What They Say
After the Gryps, it’s time for the Lindvolus tournament! Ayato has been training for the competition in hopes of saving Haruka, who has been taken as a hostage…but what about his promise with Julis?
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
In a pleasant surprise, after I felt the last volume underdid the look into the past, we actually jump back there for a little bit more story right at the start this time around. And this time, what we dig deeper into is the past of Ayato’s mom, Akari. I’ve got to say, this time around things feel a touch more contained and complete thanks to that added focus, which is appreciated. Regardless I would still hope for the tale of Madiath Mesa and Akari Yachigusa to continue at least a bit further in the future, as it feels like there’s more story to tell there. But for now, I’ll take this little bit extra we’re granted this time around.
From there on, we launch into the Lindvolus proper, and honestly… it starts off with a pretty good foot forward. You see, Ayato goes first, and his opponent actually pulls out the stops revealing he was hiding not only a secret skill, but also a crazy secret weapon known as a Lost Lux! While it’s still a bad habit of this series that this new weapon type and the secret organization behind the contestant pop up out of nowhere with their history having to be abruptly and awkwardly jammed in, it’s an actual decent fight for once, so I can forgive it.
From there we get a good variety of other fights, and I’d again call them largely shockingly competent, introducing threats in a much more dynamic and interesting manner than what we got last time. I still wouldn’t exactly say we get anything too amazing here, but it really is a pleasant shock that pretty much every battle had me going, “Huh, that… actually wasn’t terrible.” Honestly, it seems to drive home the fact that the series has focused way too much on team battles up till now, as the author is just clearly incompetent in that arena, while keeping things one on one actually produces acceptable results.
Anyway, with things heating up with the Golden Bough Alliance just as the tournament really picks up, just how will our heroes handle all the great many threats awaiting them?
Honestly, I have to give credit where credit is due: While this isn’t an amazing book by any means, it really is shockingly competent all around. By focusing the fights down to one on one matches, the battles actually seem decently executed this time around. Which is certainly good, as there are plenty of them all throughout the book. On top of that, the questionable fanservice and humor take a backseat, while the intrigue and mysteries continue to unfold. And heck, we even get a nice little aside right at the start, too. While it isn’t perfect, it really is a remarkable improvement for the series, so hopefully, it can keep this up continuing on into the arc.
Content Grade: B+
Art Grade: N/A
Packaging Grade: A-
Text/Translation Grade: B-
Age Rating: 13+
Released By: Yen Press
Release Date: May 26th, 2020