Ascendance of a Bookworm: I’ll Do Anything to Become a Librarian!, Part 3: Adopted Daughter of an Archduke, Vol. 3

By Miya Kazuki and You Shiina. Released in Japan as “Honzuki no Gekokujou: Shisho ni Naru Tame ni wa Shudan wo Erandeiraremasen” by TO Books. Released in North America digitally by J-Novel Club. Translated by quof.

Last time I talked about how Rozemyne, try as she might, is not going to drag this world kicking and screaming into the 20th century anytime soon. Indeed, anyone reading this series hoping for a class war starting between the elite nobles and the clever commoners has probably already checked out by now. Rozemyne may tell Ferdinand that she will never be comfortable with killing another person – and thank God for that! – but she is still going to stay a noble and try to follow noble rules. Of course, there are other ways to subvert society, and we find that her cards and picture books are doing this far more than most people are ready for. Kids are learning fast. Very fast. Heck, even Angelica, her bodyguard who took the job because it would mean she didn’t have to study at school – ends up learning with a sufficient reward dangled in front of her. The Revolution Will Be Printed.

As you can see by the cover, much of this book takes place in winter, though fortunately Rozemyne only has one “and then I was in bed for days” incident in the book. She’s gathering ingredients for her cure, which can involve fighting a massive snow leopard monster who can create hideous blizzards, or can involve collecting nectar from a hot spring that proves to be a lot more sentient than Ferdinand was expecting. So there’s actually a fair bit of action here. We also get to see Rozemyne play politics, as she gets the noble kids to work together, teaches them without it being overt (the best kind of teaching), and starts to create the idea of lending libraries, getting one poor noble’s daughter books in return for hearing new stories that her mother had told her. Honestly, if it were not for the resolution of what happened with the Mayor last book, this would be a light and fluffy volume.

It is not a light and fluffy volume. Rozemyne is forced to not only watch the Mayor, his wife, and a few people who had shown (thank to Ferdinand’s magic) that they were disloyal be killed, but also to see how nobility in general regards commoners as little better than animals, and their lives absolutely do not matter. Much as we would like to see her fix this, Rozemyne is still about 7 years old here, and cannot bend the world to their will quite that much. The execution itself is fantastical in nature but also horrific, and much is made of the fact that those killed with be unburied and unremembered. Fortunately, we do move from this to the Hot Springs episode, which, fortunately, does not lead to a bunch of fanservice as it would in any other title. The closest we get to fanservice is Rozemyne giving Brigitte a present of a fashionable dress, and remarking on her large chest. As for the hot springs ingredient gathering, it’s honestly hilarious, especially in retrospect. Even Rosemyne and Brigitte getting eaten by a giant toad just made me think of KonoSuba (it’s OK, they get out).

There’s two more volumes to go in this arc, and I’ve really no idea where it’s going to go, other than better printing, more books, etc. But that’s fine. Even the chapters discussing springs and leverage are interesting in this series. It remains a must read.

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