Illustrated by Toshi Aoi
Will is a No-Talent student attending Regarden Magical Academy and hoping one day to become part of the Magia Vander. He can’t cast a single spell, but he isn’t talent-less - rather, he is exceptionally skilled at the sword, and he has gotten as far as he has by beating monsters in the dungeon below the school, and by studying relentlessly so that he can pass all of his written exams. Despite his skills, most of Will’s classmates and professors refuse to accept a No-talent among their ranks, and they test him and bully him frequently. One such occasion comes within the dungeons as Will’s classmate, Sion, tries to eliminate a dangerous beast before Will and deprive him of the prize credits. In another turn, a professor challenges will to land a single offensive strike. Will constantly must prove that he is worthy of his place at Regarden and achieve his dreams at his friend's side in the highest place of their magical society.
This world has a lot of similarities to Harry Potter while mixing in enough originality to start making its own way in the fantasy genre. The overall pacing was intense - this first volume read very quickly, especially considering how long the first chapter was. Collette, Will's friend who helps stand up for him, could be given some more page-time and development, or else she risks becoming a throwaway character in a sea of students and professors who are already more interesting and given more time for readers to bond with and connect to the character designs.
Aoi's illustration and character designs evoke high fantasy and immerse readers into spell-casting and the magic very quickly even though Will doesn't cast magic. Will's fighting style is still beautiful and evokes a similar feel to wizardry, so he very much feels like a part of this magical world despite what classmates want to believe. The setting does take a lot of inspiration from medieval castling and boarding schools, so the closeness to Harry Potter don't end with the story structure and character arcs.
Sara's Rating: 8/10
Suitability Level: Grades 7-12
Publication Date: November 29, 2022
ISBN: 9781646515608 (Paperback)
Tags: Rating: 8/10, Suitability: Middle School, Suitability: High School, Manga, Magic, School Life, Friendship, Kodansha
I've been reading manga and comicbooks for years. Now, I write reviews and other helpful things for School Librarians, teachers, parents, and students.
Search this site
Ratings, Audience, and Subject Tags