The TV anime adaptation of Reign of the Seven Spellblades is currently airing, giving both newcomers and existing fans plenty to enjoy. So, what better time to jump back into the source material? After the explosive events of Volume 5, let’s check in on protagonist Oliver and the group.
When we last saw Oliver at the end of Volume 5, he had succeeded in killing Enrico, one of the professors at Kimberly Magic Academy and one of the targets of Oliver’s revenge plot. Although the mission was a success, the price was high and Oliver had to deal with the aftereffects which left him walking a fine line between life and death.
Luckily, Oliver manages to survive but his body has gone through so much internal growth that he’s lost the precise control of magic he had before. And as everyone knows, there is nothing more dangerous than having no way to defend yourself at Kimberly, particularly when you’re already a second-year student.
So a lot of this book revolves around Oliver and his route to recovery (if such a thing is even possible) but when news breaks that Enrico is dead, the school is in an uproar. With two teachers dead in two years, the headmaster suspects that someone is picking them off one by one and is willing to investigate everyone to get to the bottom of Enrico’s death, including the students. Oliver’s group have done their best to cover their tracks and is currently trying to frame one of the other teachers, but will that be enough?
And on top of that, the Student Council Election is looming and fifth-year student Vera Miligan is hoping to take the role of president. She’s even asked Oliver’s friend group to support her in the race, which they have mixed feelings about but ultimately agree to, since she’s been helping Katie with her Magical Biology task of taming a griffin.
A sizeable portion of the volume is also dedicated to following the story of Diana Ashbury, one of the school’s top broomsport athletes who’s tipped to break the world record for how fast she can fly on her broom. But since the disappearance of her Catcher (those tasked with saving someone who falls from their broom during a broomsport), Diana has struggled to fly as fearlessly as she did before. Thanks to her own talents on the broom, Nanao has established a sort of friendship and rivalry with Diana and wishes there was something she could do…
While there’s quite a lot happening in this volume of Reign of the Seven Spellblades, I can’t help but feel it’s a little bit like filler before the next arc. Diana’s storyline leaves the biggest impression as it’s concluded here, whereas the Student Council Election looks set to run into Volume 7 (and perhaps further than that).
But this book does serve as key character development for Oliver, who until now has always been a protagonist that was powerful and able to protect his friends. Here, he’s left with a looming sense of dread as he can’t use his magic even to protect himself, never mind anyone else. If left untreated, he may not even be able to continue with his revenge plot, which would make all the sacrifices so far worthless. And to someone as caring as Oliver, there’s nothing worse than thinking that those who died in the battle against Enrico may have done so for nothing. Yes, he’s vulnerable in a way we’ve never seen before and as readers that’s rewarding for us. Especially as he’s forced to open up to Nanao and finally lean on someone, instead of being the one leant on by others. In the end, as much as I still feel like this was filling for time I still came away satisfied with it by the end and I think other fans of the series will as well.
Reign of the Seven Spellblades Volume 6 comes to the West thanks to Yen Press and continues to be translated by Andrew Cunningham. The translation reads well with no issues to note. Although I remain surprised that the age rating remains at a 13, given some of the sexual content once again present this time around; it’s certainly not a series I would recommend for readers that young and I think Yen Press should have increased it by now.
As mentioned, the anime adaptation for the series is currently airing and if you are a fan of the series already I recommend checking that out. Volumes 7 and 8 are already available with #9 set for an English release in September, so there’s plenty of this to keep fans busy. Japan is currently sitting at 12 volumes, so we’ve still got a few volumes to go until we’re completely caught up.
Overall, Reign of the Seven Spellblades Volume 6 is the calm before the storm. Plenty is happening, but nothing that compares to the events of Volume 5. Still, fans of the series won’t be disappointed as long as you lower your expectations accordingly and take the chance to prepare yourself before we jump into the next major storyline.
Our review copy from Yen Press was supplied by Diamond Book Distributors UK.