I’ve Been Killing Slimes for 300 Years and Maxed Out My Level, Vol. 11

By Kisetsu Morita and Benio. Released in Japan as “Slime Taoshite 300 Nen, Shiranai Uchi ni Level MAX ni Nattemashita” by GA Novels. Released in North America by Yen On. Translated by Jasmine Bernhardt.

I read this volume immediately after a volume of The Saga of Tanya the Evil, and I highly recommend it, because it probably made the book feel better than it actually is. That said, there are other reasons this is a very solid book in the series. First of all, the stories are slightly longer, which allows for a bit more depth to a series for which depth is eternally absent. Secondly, the side stories at the end move to focus on Laika, and I am far happier to read about Laika at Lillian Girls’ Academy (or whatever its name is here, MariMite is clearly what it’s supposed to be, though) than I ever was with Halkara. Seeing Laika wound up so tightly is both nostalgic and also a bit bittersweet – at least we know she has a peaceful future ahead of her. As for Azusa, well, she’s discovering that just because she’s resolved to take it easy and relax in her next life doesn’t mean she has to do that all the time.

Stories in this volume: our main cast has a moonlight picnic, which unfortunately leads to an existential crisis for the newest cast member Canimeow caused by our other newest cast member, Wynona; Azusa learns that, in fact, this world does have actual physical laws that she cannot break, so a trip to the moon is not happening soon; The cast take a day off by visiting the demon world’s main town, and help Fighsly raise a slime child… pet… whatever; after Azusa is paying too much attention to an injured Sandra, Falfa and Shalsha decide to run away from home; Halkara wondering what it would be like to eat a slime leads to a jellyfish that feeds off negative emotions; the aftermath of that, as Halkara, freed from her base desires, is super annoying; and the entire cast run a relay race.

The most interesting story was probably the relay race. Pecora has been reading yuri romances again, and declares that Azusa and Beelzebub have been “taking their friendship for granted” and not bonding the way that true friends do. Which Azusa is not going to be bonding with anyone anytime soon, she does come to a realization that she can occasionally try her hardest. Her past life doesn’t get a mention in this book specifically, but it’s clearly what has been driving her to sort of half-ass everything in this new life. She literally worked herself to death before. So of course she’s not going to want to do anything that goes near that. But at the end of the race, when she has to run faster and harder than she ever has before, she discovers that sometimes it’s OK. Sometimes you can try your hardest. Hopefully this is something that she can continue to teach her extended family in future volumes.

All this plus Laika at school, where we see her desperately trying to get out from under her sister’s shadow, and only partially succeeding. Despite the excitement of the race at the end, this is still a book for those who enjoy relaxed fare.

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