Dahlia in Bloom: Crafting a Fresh Start with Magical Tools, Vol. 3

By Hisaya Amagishi and Kei. Released in Japan as “Madougushi Dahliya wa Utsumukanai” by MF Books. Released in North America by J-Novel Heart. Translated by Nikolas Stirling.

I mentioned this in my review of the second volume, but it bears repeating: These two are a wonderful couple who absolutely should not get together at this point. Even the rest of the cast agrees with me. No one dares bring it up with Dahlia, who is still being treated with kid gloves, frankly (then again, it has only been a month since she was dumped by her fiance the day before her wedding), but everyone is planning for her business to be SO successful that she gets made a baroness, which would solve most of the issues with her marrying Volf. Not that she really has clued in to her own feelings yet. Volf has clued in to his own feelings, but his solution to the problem of class differences is terrible, as is fortunately pointed out to him by his older brother. Really, for the moment, they’re best as they are seen here: inventing new things, creating hilariously bad and terrifying magical swords, and eating and drinking a lot. A whole lot.

Much of this volume is spent with Dahlia trying to find a way to make the portable stove even smaller, so that it can be easily carried by knights when they go on their missions. We get into the nitty gritty of materials needed, cost, and how much to change – this book does not skimp on the business insights. That said, Dahlia is still showing off some painful naivete in this book. She’s trying to deal with the gossip about her and Volf, but it’s not something that you can just smile and hope it goes away. More concerning is the fact that she has so little self-worth that she gives away valuable creations at the drop of a hat, not realizing that she needs to convey a better idea of what she is as a proprietor rather than as a friend. As for Volf, well, his biggest concern is a monster that creates an illusion of a loved one – something Volf has never really had to deal with until now.

We already pretty much knew that Dahlia was having trouble dealing with the death of her father, and here we see that she’s also still having trouble dealing with her previous life in Japan, where she had a still living mother when she overworked herself to death. Honestly, she may have a similar fate here unless events conspire to get her and Volf together, as we see her lose track of the entire day working on another invention. She also says she plans to never get married, which is fine right now given that she and Volf are already acting like – and are mistaken for – a married couple. You can absolutely see where the rumors come from. The scene where they buy the matching glasses and amphora in order to have even better alcohol is really great, and shows that when they do manage to get past their own personal demons, they will be an amazing power couple.

But that’s for future Dahlia volumes. For now there is outside barbecue, a strong cider, and Dahlia’s vague feeling that she wants Volf to be by her side forever. Huh. Wonder what that’s about?

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