Tag Archives: Light Novels

Reading Log: September 2019

September came and went in a flash, I’m not even sure where the time went this month! I feel like I read quite a lot of good stuff this month, so lets take a look:

Manga

  • Graduate volume 1
  • Eromanga Sensei volume 3
  • Record of Grancrest War volume 4
  • It’s Fine, Even if It’s Just a Dream volume 1
  • Demon Slayer volume 8
  • Jinjin Jingisukan
  • Haikyu!! volume 34
  • That Time I got Reincarnated as a Slime volumes 9-10
  • To The Abandoned Sacred Beasts volume 9
  • My Next Life as a Villainess: All Routes Lead to Doom volume 1
  • Motion Emotion volume 1
  • Infinite Dendrogram volume 3
  • Shortcake Cake volume 5
  • Silver Spoon volume 10
  • Snow White with the Red Hair volume 3 – review
  • Fullmetal Alchemist: Full Metal Edition volume 6
  • Magus of the Library volume 2 – review
  • Bungo Stray Dogs volume 12
  • Discommunication volume 2
  • Candy Colour Paradox volume 3
  • The Golden Sheep volume 1
  • The Secret Between Two
  • I’m Sorry, God
  • Become You volume 1
  • Mood Indigo volume 1

Light Novels

  • The Night is Short, Walk on Girl – review
  • Koyomimonogatari Part 2 – review
  • Sexiled! volume 1
  • The Reprise of the Spear Hero volume 1
  • Konosuba volume 9
  • Restaurant to Another World volume 1
  • Kokoro Connect volume 7
  • How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom volume 10
  • Outbreak Company volume 11
  • Combatants Will be Dispatched! volume 1

So 26 manga this month and 10 light novels, compared to 40 and 13. September was a relatively quiet month for new releases and so I managed to get through my pile of shame a little bit instead. Speaking of, here’s how that’s looking:

Pile of Shame:

Currently reading: Torture Princess volume 1

Reincarnated into Sword volume 1
Decapitation
Strangulation
Classroom of the Elite volume 2
Arifureta volume 1
Sword Art Online: Progressive volume 6
Tokyo Ghoul: Re volumes 8-11
Re:Zero volume 8
Log Horizon volume 4
Re:Zero EX volume 2
Strike the Blood volume 4
The Devil is a Part Timer! volume 11

Reading Log: August 2019

August has been a fairly hectic month for me. I started a new part-time job, which has eaten up a lot of my time and energy, but things are beginning to calm down now. Here’s what I read this month:

Manga:

  • The Beautiful Greeness volume 1
  • Elevator Strategy volume 1  
  • The Legend of Zelda Twilight Princess volume 5
  • Konekokawa and Koinumaru
  • An Archdemon’s Dilemma: How to Love Your Elf Bride volume 2
  • Himouto! Umaru-chan volume 6
  • F-Ken
  • Pornographer volume 1
  • The Magic in this Other World is Too Far Behind volume 3
  • Tomo-chan is a Girl! volume 4
  • Secretly, I’ve been Suffering About Being Sexless
  • Skull-face Bookseller Honda-san volume 1 – review
  • Chi’s Sweet Home volume 1*in Japanese*
  • So I’m a Spider, So What? volume 6
  • The Alchemist Who Survived Now Dreams of a Quiet City Life volume 1
  • Haikyuu!! volume 33
  • Flying Witch volume 7
  • Witch Hat Alteier volume 2
  • Our Dreams at Dusk volume 2
  • Dreamin’ Sun volume 9
  • Anonymous Noise volume 16
  • Daytime Shooting Star volumes 1-2
  • Ao Haru Ride volume 6
  • Komi Can’t Communicate volume 2
  • That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime volume 8
  • Ascendance of a Bookworm volume 2
  • Fairy Tail: 100 Years Quest volume 1 – review
  • Hitorijime My Hero volume 4
  • The Last Saiyuki (was following in Weekly Shonen Jump)
  • O Maidens in Your Savage Season volume 3 – review
  • Phony World
  • Animeta! volume 3
  • I Shall Survive Using Potions volume 2
  • What’s Under his Clothes is Outrageous!
  • Kaguya-sama Love is War volume 2
  • How to Treat a Lady Knight Right volume 1
  • Nichoume Days Lives of the One-Room Residents
  • Sleeping with the Stallion
  • Tokyo Tarareba Girls volume 8

Light Novels:

  • My Hero Academia: School Briefs volume 2 – review
  • I Saved Too Many Girls and Caused the Apocalypse volume 15
  • Do You Love Your Mom and Her Two-Hit Multi-Target Attacks? volume 3
  • An Archdemon’s Dilemma: How to Love Your Elf Bride volume 7 – review
  • Der Werwolf: The Annuals of Veight volume 5
  • 86 volume 2 – review
  • Fullmetal Panic! volume 3
  • Bottom-Tier Character Tomozaki volume 1 – review
  • Ascendance of a Bookworm volume 3
  • Last Round Arthurs volume 1
  • Cooking with Wild Game volume 1
  • Bungo Stray Dogs volume 1 – review
  • The Combat Baker and Automation Waitress volume 1

So this month I only managed 13 light novels, but a lot of my J-Novel titles have been on hold – which is what usually bulks out the numbers. However I did manage 40 manga, so I’m doing pretty well there… Finally, here’s what I’m currently reading and what’s in the pile of shame (which has grown because I got a job):

Currently reading: The Night is Short, Walk on Girl

Pile of Shame:

Record of Grancrest War volume 4
Haikyu!! volume 34
That Time I got Reincarnated into a Slime volumes 9-10
Decapitation
Strangulation
Classroom of the Elite volume 2
Classmates volume 2
Eromanga-Sensei volume 3
Snow White with the Red Hair volume 3
Torture Princess volume 1
Arifureta volume 1
Sword Art Online: Progressive volume 6
Restaurant in Another World volume 1
Tokyo Ghoul: Re volumes 8-11
The Reprise of the Spear Hero volume 1
Re:Zero volume 8
Log Horizon volume 4
Re:Zero EX volume 2
Strike the Blood volume 4
The Devil is a Part Timer! volume 11

At this rate I should probably make a separate pile of shame for manga.

Reading Log: June 2019

Now we’re officially halfway through the year and I can say that my ability to keep up with manga and light novels has been going well this year. Here’s what I got through in June and if you’re a first time visitor you can read the rules I set for myself here.

Manga:

  • Fullmetal Alchemist Fullmetal Edition volume 5
  • One Room of Happiness volume 5
  • Queen’s Quality volume 7
  • A Very Fairy Apartment volume 2
  • I’ve Been Standing on a Million Lives volume 1 (reread) – Review
  • Noragami volume 20
  • Ao Haru Ride volume 5
  • Maiden Railway
  • I Shall Survive Using Potions volume 1
  • Ascendance of a Bookworm volume 1
  • The Magic in this Other World is Too Far Behind! volume 2
  • Sweet Reincarnation volume 1
  • Red Sprite
  • Marginal Operation volume 1
  • Our Dreams at Dusk volume 1
  • O Maidens in Your Savage Season volume 2 – review
  • Food Wars! (was following in WSJ)
  • Discommunication volume 1
  • Love Rush
  • The Unwanted Undead Adventurer volume 1
  • Animeta! volume 1 (reread) – review
  • Bungo Stray Dogs volume 11
  • Konosuba: An Explosion on this Wonderful World volume 1- review
  • Little Miss P
  • Blank Canvas: My So Called Artist’s Journey volume 1
  • Tokyo Tarareba Girls volume 7
  • Silver Spoon volume 9
  • Hi-Fi Cluster

Light Novels:

  • I’ve Been Killing Slimes for 300 Years and Maxed Out my Level volume 4
  • Wolf Children: Ame and Yukireview
  • Classroom of the Elite volume 1
  • An Archdemon’s Dilemma: How to Love Your Elf Bride volume 6 – review
  • Cooking with Wild Game volume 3
  • Side by Side Dreamers
  • Kokoro Connect volume 6 – review
  • Full Metal Panic volume 2
  • Log Horizon volume 3
  • Welcome to Japan, Ms Elf volume 2
  • Strike the Blood volume 3
  • Ascendance of a Bookworm volume 2
  • Seriously Seeking Sister! Ultimate Vampire Princess just wants Little Sister volume 1
  • Record of Wortenia War volume 1
  • The Hero is Overpowered but Overly Cautious volume 1 – review
  • My Next Life as a Villainess All Routes Lead to Doom! volume 4
  • If It’s For My Daughter, I’d Even Defeat a Demon Lord volume 8
  • Katanagatari volume 2 – review
  • How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom volume 9

A fairly bumper month for reading with 28 manga down and 19 light novels, up from May at least! Here’s the pile of shame:

Currently reading: Woof Woof Story volume 2

DanMachi Sword Oratoria volume 9
The Reprise of the Spear Hero volume 1
Re:Zero volume 8
Log Horizon volume 4
Re:Zero EX volume 2
Strike the Blood volume 4
The Devil is a Part Timer! volume 11

Down a bit from last month, thankfully, although it has also seen some newcomers arrive…

Reading Log: May 2019

We’re now five months into the year! Time is going by too fast for my liking and I feel like I’ve read a lot less than usual, but let’s take a look. As always the rules I set for myself can be found here. Bold shows a completed series while italics means dropped. Now let’s see how I’ve done this month.

Manga:

  • Dead Dead Demon’s Dededede Destruction volume 5
  • Animeta! volume 2
  • JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Part 1 – Phantom Blood
  • Silver Spoon volume 8
  • Fullmetal Alchemist: The Complete Four-Panel Comics – reviews
  • JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Part 2 – Battle Tendency 
  • JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Part 3 – Stardust Crusaders
  • Black Torch volume 4
  • Shortcake Cake volume 4
  • Anonymous Noise volume 14
  • Demon Slayer volume 6
  • Hell Warden Higuma (Weekly Shonen Jump)
  • Haikyu!! volume 32
  • Dive!! volume 2 – review
  • Emanon volume 1 – review
  • Love in Focus volume 2 – review
  • Yozakura Quartet volume 2
  • Kino’s Journey: The Beautiful World volume 2
  • Natsume’s Book of Friends volume 2
  • Hitorijime My Hero volume 3
  • Blood Blockade Battlefront volumes 9-1

Light novels:

  • Sherlock Holmes: A Scandal in Japan – review
  • My Hero Academia: School Briefs volume 1 – review
  • Der Werwolf: The Annals of Veight volume 4
  • Konosuba volume 8
  • Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash volume 14
  • Tsukimonogatari – review
  • Seoreo Gensokui Spirit Chronicles volume 5
  • Penguin Highway – review
  • Outbreak Company volume 9
  • A Sister’s All You Need volume 4
  • Infinite Dendrogram volume 9
  • I Saved Too Many Girls and Caused the Apocalypse volume 14
  • In Another World with my Smartphone volume 15

This brings me to 22 manga and 13 light novels for the month, so around the same as May (which was 23/16). I buzzed through a lot of JoJo this month, so I guess that’s where a lot of my reading time went…

And here’s the pile of shame for the month:

Currently reading: I’ve Been Killing Slimes for 300 Years and Maxed Out my Level volume 4

Snow White with the Red Hair volume 1
I’m Standing on a Million Lives volume 1
Fullmetal Alchemist Fullmetal Edition volume 5
Wolf Children
Classroom of the Elite volume 1
Log Horizon volume 3
Strike the Blood volume 3
Re:Zero volume 8
Log Horizon volume 4
Re:Zero EX volume 2
Strike the Blood volume 4
The Devil is a Part Timer! volume 11

The pile of shame has, shamefully, grown this month! Everything from Wolf Children down is a LN. I’ve been stalling Wolf Children, I’m Standing on (…) and Snow White for awhile because I’m behind on reviews for AUKN and didn’t want to read them and then forget things before I could review them. So I should be able to knock those off pretty fast once I get through my current backlog. FMA also only arrived yesterday, so just haven’t had a chance to touch it yet.

Reading Log: April 2019

Another month, another reading log. I’ve managed to keep these going for four months now so I’m feeling pretty proud of myself. As always the rules I set for myself can be found here.  Bold shows a completed series while italics means dropped. Now let’s see how I’ve done this month.

Manga:

    • Clockwork Planet volumes 1-5
    • Nano Hazard volumes 1-3
    • Candy Colour Paradox volume 1
    • As Miss Beelzebub Likes volume 5
    • Hitorijime My Hero volume 2
    • Eromanga Sensei volume 2
    • Fire Force volume 2
    • Tokyo Ghoul:re volume 7
    • O Maidens in your Savage Season volume 1 – review
    • Lofty Flower, Fall for Me volume 7
    • If It’s for My Daughter, I’d Even Defeat a Demon Lord volume 3
    • Himouto! Umaru-chan volume 5
    • Yozakura Quartet volume 1
    • Ne0;Lation
    • Tokyo Tarareba Girls volume 6
    • Ao Haru Ride volume 4
    • Pumpkin Scissors volume 1
    • The Master of Ragnarok volume 1

Light Novels:

  • An Archdemon’s Dilemma: How to Love Your Elf Bride Volume 5 – review soon
  • The Unwanted Undead Adventurer volume 4
  • Durarara!! volume 12
  • Campfire Cooking in Another World With My Absurd Skill volume 1
  • Kokoro Connect volume 5 – review soon
  • 86 volume 1 – review
  • Full Metal Panic! volume 1
  • My Next life as a Villainess: All Routes Lead to Doom! volume 3
  • Re:Zero volume 7
  • In Another World with My Smartphone volume 14
  • I Shall Survive Using Potions volume 2
  • The Devil is a Part Timer! volume 10
  • Ascendance of a Bookworm volume 1
  • Vampire Knight: Fleeting Dreams
  • The Greatest Magicmaster’s Retirement Plan volume 1
  • Re:Zero EX volume 1

So my counts for this month are 23 manga and 16 light novels, which is down for manga from last month but also up in light novels. Light novel reading raises and falls a lot depending on when J-Novel Club finish books, so I’m not as interested in how that number raises and falls as my manga reading does.

Also worth noting that my count for manga is off by one because I don’t count Ne0;Lation as a volume, I was reading it simulpub’d but I didn’t want to give it its own header for finishing. It’s always a shame to see a WSJ series come to an end, but no real surprise with this one either.

To finish off, here is what’s sitting in the pile of shame:

Log Horizon volume 3
Strike the Blood volume 3
Re:Zero volume 8
Log Horizon volume 4
Re:Zero EX volume 2
Strike the Blood volume 4
The Devil is a Part Timer! volume 11

It’s not growing at least!

Reading Log: March 2019

The third times the charm or something like that! We’re now into April and I’m still sat here writing this log, so things are going well. As always the rules I set for myself can be found here. Now let’s see how I’ve done this month.

Manga:

    • Mushishi volumes 7-10
    • We Never Learn volume 2 – review
    • Record of Grancrest War volume 2 – review
    • Lofty Flower, Fall for Me!! volume 5 – 6
    • Black Torch volume 3
    • Demon Slayer volume 5
    • After Hours volumes 1-3
    • Love in Focus volume 1 – review
    • Anonymous Noise volume 13
    • Haikyu!! volume 31
    • To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts volume 7
    • The Ancient Magus’ Bride volume 10
    • Dead Dead Demon’s Dededede Destruction volume 4
    • Voice of a Distant Star
    • Flying Witch volume 5
    • A Very Fairy Apartment volume 1
    • The Magic in This Other World is Too Far Behind volume 1
    • Bloom Into You volume 3
    • Silver Spoon 7
    • Bungo Stray Dogs volume 10
    • So I’m a Spider, So What? volume 5
    • That Time I got Reincarnated into a Slime volume 5 – 6
    • How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom volume 1
    • Tomo-chan is a Girl volume 3
    • Spirit Chronicles volume 1
    • Hiro Mashima’s Playground

Light Novels:

  • The Devil is a Part Timer! volume 9
  • Death Note Another Note: The Los Angeles BB Murder Cases – article
  • 5 Centimeters Per Second – One More Side – review
  • Seirei Gensouki Spirit Chronicles volume 4
  • Cooking with Wild Game volume 2
  • Outbreak Company volume 8
  • Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon?: Sword Oratoria volume 8
  • Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon? volume 13 – article
  • I Saved Too Many Girls and Caused the Apocalypse volume 13
  • Do You Love Your Mom and Her Two-Hit Multi-Target Attacks volume 2

So this month I’ve read 33 volumes of manga and 10 light novels. Down a bit in terms of manga from Feb, but I did have my birthday this month so I’m still reading a lot more manga than I usually would. Anyways here’s what’s in the pile of shame:

Re:Zero volume 7 (currently reading)
Durarara!! volume 12
Tokyo Ghoul:re volume 7
The Devil is a Part-Timer! volume 10
Vampire Knight: Fleeting Dreams
Re:Zero EX volume 1
Log Horizon volume 3
Strike the Blood volume 3
Re:Zero volume 8
Log Horizon volume 4
Re:Zero EX volume 2
Strike the Blood volume 4
The Devil is a Part Timer! volume 11

The pile has been slightly rearranged due to new purchases and wanting to break it up to prevent me reading the same series in a row. Tokyo Ghoul is the only manga in the pile, the rest are light novels…

Infinite Dendrogram’s Ray Starling is a Hero Among Heroes

For the people who are know me it will come as no surprise that I’m writing a piece on a VRMMO light novel. A fan of the fantasy genre and the Isekai and VRMMO stories that fill it (especially here in the west), I spend a lot of time reading stories about heroes and other worlds.

One of the series I’m fond of is Infinite Dendrogram, a light novel series being published in English by J-Novel Club. They’ve just started releasing the 9th volume (the latest in Japan) and the opening battle got me thinking about how great main character Ray Starling is.

If you’ve not read the series before then I highly encourage you to and you can find out more at J-Novel Club’s page here. I’m not reviewing the series so I don’t really want to stray from the meat of the article by getting into what the story is about right now.

Now over the course of nine books we’ve seen Ray tackle a number of awful and testing situations. He’s defeated powerful bosses and brought down plots to do harm to the kingdom he belongs to, but he’s never felt like a true hero in the way he does in this volume. Always the main character but never quite breaking out of that mould, I’ve been fond of Ray but now he’s won my respect. As an orphanage is about to be burnt to the ground, by an enemy who I won’t name, Ray bursts onto the scene dressed like a demon but with a heroic shine in his eyes. When they say looks can be deceiving they certainly had Ray in mind, that’s for sure…

The thing is, generally speaking characters do good things because they’re in the right place at the right time. Either that or they’re just OP enough where there is no real risk to their lives and thus are always willing to take up a challenge. In Ray’s case none of these are true – well, except that his life isn’t really at risk because Infinite Dendrogram is not a death game. Anyway, Ray races onto the scene with no real guarantee that he’ll make it through the fight alive. If he dies he’ll be given a death penalty and unable to log back in for a set amount of time, at which point there is no one to save the orphans. Knowing this he runs into danger to put everything on the line to accomplish his goal. It’s life or death but Ray will do his best and put up a fantastic fight for his beliefs. This all comes with a heroic speech about how standing still is the worst thing you can do, naturally.

Honestly reading this back makes Ray sound kind of insufferable, but he’s actually not. In fact I’d go so far as to say he’s one of the protagonists I like best in this particular genre and certainly from among the books J-Novel Club publish from it. He’s down to earth and modest while also being a little dense. Honestly author Sakon Kaido has done a great job crafting him into a really likeable hero, someone who isn’t OP or too unrealistic. Credit is also due to translator Andrew Hodgson, who does a great job at giving Ray a distinct and fitting ‘voice’. That goes double for this volume, which is shaping up to be one of the best yet.

In a genre filled to the brim with unlikable and or likeable but cookie-cutter protagonist, it’s just nice to have someone a bit different. Ray certainly shares similar traits to these other protagonists, but he’s also better than them. A hero to send shivers down your spine and truly make you believe in the concept. I never thought that I’d be this excited about a volume of Infinite Dendrogram, but there is something special about the way its written and how things are progressing. I’m not sure Ray is going to be overcome all the tests ahead of him, and frankly the series isn’t shy about meddling with some dark concepts so it wouldn’t surprise me if it’s made to suffer – but that’s again. A true hero will raise again and so Ray will too.

Ultimately I just wanted to gush about how much I’m enjoying this book already, but I’ve never really talked about Infinite Dendrogram before either, so this seemed like a good opportunity, I really hope that the forthcoming anime adaption of Infinite Dendrogram does the series justice so you can all join in with my love for it!

Reading Log: February 2019

It’s time for the second instalment of my reading log! I’ve managed to commit myself for more than a month, so things are looking good. The rules I laid out for myself in the first month can be found here. With that said, let’s found out how I’ve done this month!

Manga:

  • Dreamin’ Sun volume 8
  • Behind the Scenes volumes 4-5
  • Cells at Work volume 1-4
  • Heaven’s Design Team volumes 1-2
  • Tokyo Ghoul:re volume 4-6
  • Kino’s Journey: The Beautiful World volume 1 – review
  • Anonymous Noise volume 12
  • Tokyo Tarareba Girls volume 4-5
  • I Want to Eat Your Pancreas volumes 1-2 review
  • Record of Grancrest War volume 1 – review
  • Fire Punch volumes 1-2
  • I’m standing on a Million Lives volumes 1-4
  • Infinite Dendrogram volume 1
  • Lofty Flower, Fall for me!! volume 4
  • That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime volumes 2-4
  • Land of the Lustrous volume 1
  • Mushishi volumes 1-6
  • Animeta! volume 1
  • Shortcake cake volume 3
  • Ao Haru Ride volume 3
  • Fullmetal Alchemist Fullmetal Edition volume 4
  • My Solo Exchange Diary volume 2

Light Novels:

  • Welcome to Japan, Ms Elf volume 1
  • Kokoro Connect volume 4
  • Der Werwolf: The Annals of Veight volume 3
  • I’ve Been Killing Slimes for 300 Years and Maxed Out My Level volume 3
  • Re:Zero volume 6
  • In Another World with My Smartphone volume 13 (no I don’t know how I’ve survived 13 volumes either…)
  • Koimonogatari – review
  • Woof Woof Story: I Told You To Turn Me into a Pampered Pooch, Not Fenrir volume 1 – review

This month my reading has grown for manga, with having read 41 volumes compared to 24 last month. With less J-Novel Club titles rolling over, my count for light novels has fallen with only 8 read this month compared to 19 last month. At this point I’ve gotten through the backlog of manga I was given for Christmas with only light novels left, but I did buy the Kodansha humble bundle which gave me a lot of books to read! My birthday is also coming up next week so my to-read pile will probably ballon…

Currently reading: The Devil is a Part Timer! volume 9 (LN)

In the pile of shame (all light novels atm):

Death Note: Another Note
The Devil is a Part-Timer! volume 10
Re:Zero volumes 7-8
Re:Zero EX volumes 1-2
Vampire Knight: Fleeting Dreams

Sword Art Online: Progressive Volume 1 – Light Novel Review

It’s not hard to stumble across Sword Art Online when talking about recent anime hits. Based on a series of successful light novels, the anime told the story of thousands of people trapped within a video game. What the anime didn’t do however is tell this tale from the first floor of Aincrad up, although the original light novels didn’t either so it can hardly be faulted. That said, one of the more interesting aspects of Sword Art Online has always been the world of Aincrad and thus the Progressive series of novels are here to answer a lot of our questions and tell a brand new tale.

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