Private Tutor to the Duke’s Daughter: Creating a New Legend with the Unbeatable Lady of the Sword

By Riku Nanano and cura. Released in Japan as “Koujo Denka no Kateikyoushi” by Fujimi Fantasia Bunko. Released in North America digitally by J-Novel Club. Translated by William Varteresian.

This book does not particularly advance much of the plot we saw in the first volume, and in fact reads a bit like “oh crap now it’s a series what do I do”, but I don’t think I care because this was so much fun to read. Apologies to the titular duke’s daughter, Tina, but Lydia is a delightful ball of tsundere cliches. We only saw a bit of her in the first book, but here she’s in full flower, bullying Allen, attacking him, defending him, beating nobles to death for him, and generally doing everything except saying “I-it’s not like I did it for you or anything!”. Wait, no, she does that too. Tina and Ellie, joined by Lydia’s little sister Lynne, are clearly infatuated with Allen, but they’re starting from so far back in the race that it’s kind of sad. And yes, I realize that a series like this is setting itself up to have Tina as the winning girl, but I’m not sure, at this point, how that is going to happen.

Allen is faced with a bit of a dilemma this volume. Lydia is having her ceremony to welcome her as a royal sorcerer at the same time that Tina and Ellie are having THEIR opening ceremony at the academy. There’s really no good way out of that (get used to me saying that about Allen and his romantic dilemmas), but he chooses the academy. There we meet his younger sister Caren, who only has a bit of a brother complex, and Tina’s older sister Stella, who has spent years proving her family wrong and making a name for herself at school only to have Tina waltz in and be better at everything. I expect her to snap and turn evil in Book 3 or 4. Unfortunately for Allen, without him at Lydia’s side, her investiture has gone to hell in a handbasket. the second prince, who is the reason why Allen is not also a royal sorcerer, has returned to claim what he feels is his, and… yikes.

Lydia may spend most of this book rather angry, as fits her character type, but it’s not without cause. The second prince is a cartoon villain, the sort of arrogant snot that has a face made for punching. Indeed, one of the climactic battles has as its main difficulty NOT killing him, as a living prince who can answer for starting it all in the first place is vastly preferable to a dead prince who will just lead to exile form the kingdom. But Lydia also has more important things to worry about. Allen seems far too close to Tina, as well as her sister, and let’s not leave out dark horse Ellie, who gets more head rubs than anyone else. Hell, even Lydia’s MOTHER is hitting on him constantly. Fortunately, Allen may still have the sexuality of a bowl of cold oatmeal, but even he knows that Lydia is in love with him. He’s just ignoring that.

Allen’s headspace may make this book too annoying for harem fans (who will also dislike Lydia’s cliched tsundere ways), but I find it equally hilarious. And we even get the standard head maid/assassin/spy” type here. Despite the presence of multiple 13-year-olds hitting on our hero, this series is simply hella fun.

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