Safe & Sound in the Arms of an Elite Knight, Vol. 1

By Fuyu Aoki and Minori Aritani. Released in Japan as “Doinaka no Hakugai Reijо̄ wa О̄to Elite Kishi ni Dekiai Sareru” by DRE Novels. Released in North America by J-Novel Heart. Translated by Dawson Chen.

This one starts off rough, and I would not blame some people for noping out of the title when they read the first 30 pages or so. If you took Cinderella but made the abuse much, much worse, you’d have the start of this book. That said, AFTER the first thirty pages or so of the novel, you get to the reason it exists, which is basically “healing”, with a small side of romance. The romance is definitely there, don’t get me wrong, but our two leads are both too busy trying to get over past traumas and their own issues to really pledge their love to each other just yet. However, they *can* both be the best thing that ever happened to each other, and we se that here. Chloe allows Lloyd to see those around him and to feel warmth and softer emotions again. And Lloyd literally saves Chloe’s life, and also patiently waits for her to cope with some very real trauma. “Safe & Sound* is the important part.

Chloe was born deep in the mountains to a margrave’s family. Unfortunately, she was born with a large birthmark on her, during a famine, and her father and one of her siblings died shortly after this. As a result, she has the reputation of a “cursed child”, and is treated like a slave by her mother and sister. One day her mother snaps and tries to stab her, and Chloe flees the house and runs away to the capital… a mere three-week long journey through dangerous woods. On her arrival, she’s exhausted and confused, and is almost taken by some hooligans before being saved by a passing young man. The young man is Lloyd, the shining star of the Elite Knights in the capital. He takes Chloe back to his house, and after a lot of back and forth she agrees to be his housekeeper.

This book is definitely about overcoming trauma, but it’s not exactly the most subtle about it. Chloe’s mother and sister are cartoon villains, as are the ones who accost her on the street. Moreover, the moment I saw that she was having trouble cooking meals because knives gave her flashbacks to her mother’s attempted murder, I knew exactly how the book would end, and I was right. Still, the main reason to read this is the healing vibes, and it gets that perfectly. Chloe is just the right amount of “complete lack of self-esteem” that would naturally come from her background without being over the top, and I appreciated that Lloyd had his own childhood issues (also a bit ridiculous, to be honest) to cope with, rather than being the perfect boyfriend immediately. There are also several plot points left hanging for a Volume 2, including a possible confrontation with her abusive family and telling Lloyd about her “curse”. I suspect that one of those will go better than the other.

So yes, not revelatory or anything, and it paints in broad strokes, but this is a solid romance for fans of the genre.

Did you enjoy this article? Consider supporting us.

Speak Your Mind