A Misanthrope Teaches a Class for Demi-Humans, Vol. 2

By Kurusu Natsume and Sai Izumi. Released in Japan as “Jingai Kyōshitsu no Ningen-girai Kyōshi: Hitoma-sensei, Watashi-tachi no Kibo o Mitsukete Kuremasu ka……?” by Media Factory. Released in North America by Yen On. Translated by Linda Liu.

This is the sort of series where you can call the second volume “more of the same” and have it be a good thing. We’re here for very specific things. We want to see new students trying their best to become human, and we also want to see Hitoma, despite everything, be a really great teacher who is slowly regaining his faith in humanity. We’ve still got the three students from before, and now we add three, which gives us a lovely opportunity to dig into why these girls want to become human. Sometimes it’s pretty easy, like Minazuki and her desire to be a dancer (she’s still graduated, by the way, and doesn’t show up in this second book). Sometimes it’s harder, like Usami, whose goals have gotten so large that they’re almost impossible to achieve. And sometimes they’re… well, done to please someone else. And that forms the crux of the most interesting part of this book.

As noted, there are three new students in the classroom this year. Karin Ryuzaki is a dragon girl who has fallen in love with her teacher at first sight, and is determined to confess – despite the obvious issues with a student teacher romance. Machi Nezu is a mouse girl with an obsession with food and also an obsession with her little sister, who is in the lower grade of the school. And Neneko Kurosawa is a cat girl who seems to sleep most of the time and be relatively uninterested in class when she’s forced awake. When asked why she wants to be human, she replies at first that it’s a secret, then later that it’s someone else’s desire. But Neneko has a bigger secret, one that will severely impact her time at this school: she doesn’t actually want to become human at all.

The other girls do also get attention paid to them. We now know Haneda’s secret, of course, so she has a larger role than usual. Usami is trying harder than ever, but at least is allowed a bit of closure from her previous life. And Ohgami is… well, I hesitate to say that she’s the weak link. Her story is touching and feels earned. But I get the sense she graduated mostly as the author had run out of things to do with her. We don’t even see the “split” that is supposed to allow both aspects of her to pursue separate human lives, it’s all implied. Bit of a bummer. By contrast, Neneko’s story is the most interesting, being a companion of a witch who is at risk of becoming a yokai rather than a human. But she’d rather deal with that than deal with being separated from the one she cares for, and I like that she’s able to get that across and that they’re searching for a solution.

The book ends with a cliffhanger that makes me wonder if it will end in the next volume, as it certainly promises to wrap up Hitoma’s past trauma. But the 3rd book in the series only came out a few days ago in Japan, so it will be a while. Till then, this is good fun and heartwarming.

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