Forget Being the Villainess, I Want to Be an Adventurer!, Vol. 2

By Hiro Oda and Tobi. Released in Japan as “Tensei Reijou wa Boukensha wo Kokorozasu” by Kadokawa Books. Released in North America digitally by J-Novel Heart. Translated by Kim Louise Davis.

Well. That escalated quickly. After all the setup from the first book, I was expecting more adventuring, more knight training, and most importantly more school. Sadly, that went off the rails pretty quickly the moment General Avenger says “hey, I’ve found this guy who can give you a good fight!”. Accurate, BUT… now the rest of the book is anything but that. I did enjoy everything that was going on, it was just a bit of a surprise direction. That said, the other thing that happened in this book also surprised me, and that’s on me, I was being dumb. Because most of these villainess stories are, at their core, romance novels. Yes, our heroine may say that she has no desire to get married after being betrayed in the game, etc., but there’s still a guy who is going to be “the one”. After meeting him last time, I assumed it would simmer in the background for several books till Serephione grew up. Then this book covered several years of her life…

As noted, we do start off the same as last time. Serephione is attending the Knight School while also doing adventuring work on the side, including such things as protecting a royal as she travels to the magic academy. You know, the one that Serephione has been avoiding with great avoid. Then Prince Schneider arrives, and he now knows all about Serephione… and tries to kill her. This turns out to be for slightly better reasons than “I am evil just because”, but only slightly – both have their agendas that they can’t let go of. Now Sere is far from home, and she doesn’t even have Leo for company. She does have Miyu, the cute little snake girl she met last volume, and together they slowly make their way to a country where she can hide from her enemies… mainly =because she accidentally helped along this country’s revolution.

This book is mostly fairly light and adventurey, but when it gets serious it gets pretty damn serious. The fight between Sere and Schneider felt like it belonged to a different book, and this happens a couple of other times in the book. There’s no blending of genres, just a straight tonal shift, and it can be jarring. The other interesting thing is how this world appears to be a port authority for dead Japanese people. We already know about Serephione and her nemesis, the heroine Maribelle (who doesn’t technically appear in this book, but you can tell she’ll be the final confrontation). Now we hear that Schneider is also a reincarnate, and that he hated the Wild Rose novel. So he’s a bit bitter that he’s now in it. We’ve seen this sort of thing in other villainess stories, but usually it’s between people who actually knew each other in Japan. This book just sucks up anyone and everyone.

Despite some hiccups, this was still a fun read, and I’m happy there’s at least one more volume of it. Let’s hope it has more of the badass grandma, who barely appeared in this volume.

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