Shirayuki has achieved a status of court herbalist apprentice, and her mentor is a twelve-year old prodigy named Ryu, who has vast amounts of knowledge that can’t be found in books. Zen’s envoy from a fort under his jurisdiction hasn’t reported back, so Zen decides to personally investigate. The Court Herbalists need some medicines in that direction, so Shirayuki tags along. It’s a good thing she does, because all of the soldiers AND the envoy have become sickened, and all the weapons in the fort have been stolen! Shirayuki must suss out the problem and find a remedy for all the men before she becomes afflicted. After Zen and friends return to the palace, they discover that Zen’s older brother, Izana, has returned, and he doesn’t particularly care for how close Zen and Shirayuki have become.
This series continues to have some narrative choppiness that might be the result of an unpolished translation. I keep re-reading thinking I’m missing some bits in between speech bubbles, but it really is that the flow is off. The characters are interesting though, and the overall story is a decent read. In this volume, we get a few more side characters fleshed out, and this introduction of the first prince Izana livened the narrative up a bit. Pound for pound, Dawn of the Arcana and Yona of the Dawn are a little more interesting and compelling of fantasy romance stories starring a main character with red hair.
Sara's Rating: 8/10
Suitability Level: Grades 8-12
Reviews of previous volumes in this series: vol 1
Tags: Rating: 8/10, Suitability: Middle School, Suitability: High School, Manga, Fantasy, Romance
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