I’m the Villainess, So I’m Taming the Final Boss, Vol. 5

By Sarasa Nagase and Mai Murasaki. Released in Japan as “Akuyaku Reijo Nanode Rasubosu o Katte Mimashita” by Kadokawa Beans Bunko. Released in North America by Yen On. Translated by Taylor Engel.

I am a great fan of this series, which is one of the best in the Villainess genre. That said, reading every volume can be stressful and exhausting. More than any other book, you get the sense that if Aileen relaxes at all, takes her foot off the gas one little bit, she’ll immediately be executed. There’s never any downtime in these books. Hell, that’s the running gag at the start of this volume, before things inevitably turn serious: she can’t consummate her marriage because plot keeps happening. And the plot really, really wants things to happen the way the games were written. Interestingly, for once no one talks about trying to execute Aileen here. That said, they do say that Claude has to marry someone else, and also that he will be turning into a demon. You get the sense the implication is there. But yes, here we go again, time for Aileen to fight fate, and this time even her allies are seemingly turning on her.

Aileen and Claude are now back home after the events of the last book, and are ready to consummate. Sadly, even if the plot weren’t getting in the way, Aileen’s still too nervous about sex for anything to happen. But things do happen, and they’re interrupted by the arrival of Luciel, a demon who claims to be Claude’s father, and refuses to recognixe Aileen as Claude’s wife. What’s more, the nearby Kingdom of Hausel is having a Bridal Royale, with the winner getting to become the new ruler… oh, and also getting Claude, of course. Honestly, this is sounding a lot like the plot of the fourth game, to be honest, but there’s one slight problem: the fourth game took place six hundred years before the first three! Is fate out for Aileen’s head so badly that it will redo everything to get the ending it wants?

I hate to inform you, but this is a two-parter, so we don’t get all the answers in this first book. That said, the answer definitely appears to be “yes” so far, as Grace Dark, the antagonist of this book, is going around trying to get the “real” heroines back on their routes. She’s only mildly successful in this regard. Sahra is a pushover, and mostly goes along to help Ares. Serena knows this is fishy, but is at present so disgusted with Auguste’s waffling that she’s prepared to be a traitor. And Lilia just finds the whole thing hilarious, of course. And then there’s Aileen, who spends the whole book running around putting out fires, getting kidnapped, crashing a wedding, and generally being as badass as possible. Which is fantastic, that’s why we read these books. It’s just there’s is, as I said, the problem that if she ever stops for a breath everything she loves will be destroyed.

So yeah, very good book, but read it when you’re ready to be tense. I will say that so far Aileen has not died. We’ll see what the 6th book brings.

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