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Spice and Wolf, Vol. 6 - light novel Paperback – June 26, 2012
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There's a radical change in status quo here. First of all, there is the introduction of Cole, a little boy who joins the main cast. He kinda-sorta becomes Lawrence's merchant apprentice but wants to study church law instead in order to gain the ability to protect his pagan village. He's an interesting addition to the duo's dynamics (I had to come up with my own mental voice for him).
Because of Cole's age, the main cast is basically a family unit now. Lawrence and Holo are more or less an official couple at this point. Lawrence's feelings are out in the open but Holo's got this Mayfly December Romance fear. The economics typical of the series take a backseat as the volume delves more into the leading couple's relationship. Prime among them is the fact that their journey will be ending soon. It's intriguing to see continuous development that is also a in-universe delaying tactic.
This is not to say that there are no economics. On the contrary, it continues. For instance, Cole's backstory leads into a discussion about the education system in this time period. There's no publicly funded school system so education is significantly different. Those who can afford to hire private tutors. Those who can't pool their money together and hire a wandering scholar.
As far plot, this book picks up directly from the fallout of the last book's climax. I.E. they are pursuing someone from the previous book. Holo sounds like she really wants to sink her teeth into "the vixen". This is the second change to status quo.
The third change is how the book starts. Usually, there is a prologue about the pair traveling in their cart to the next town. Not n this case. Leaving Lenos is the prologue. There's no more cart at all. They're sailing down a river now.
Isuna Hasekura has written another solid entry for this series.
Trickster Eric Novels gives "Spice and Wolf volume 6" an A+
Even after watching the anime several times, I was at the edge of my seat for practically the entire books length; its that good. In volume 3, the relationship between Lawrence and Holo grows immensely, and we begin to understand more about Holo’s past. The story is full of economics, romance, additional characters, and a sense that leaves the reader completely fulfilled and eager to read the next volume. So far, the "Spice and Wolf" light novel series has improved exponentially; Isuna Hasekura has succeeded in making each volume better than the previous, and with 14 more volumes to go, I expect it to get even better.
To say I’m obsessed with Spice and Wolf is an understatement; I read this book cover to cover in less than 48 hours, all 249 pages of it. If I keep this up, my grades in my engineering classes will begin to suffer. As a matter of fact, I have a calculus test tomorrow. . . Sigh.
Thanks to them traveling in this issue, we get to see a bunch of back and forth bantering between Kraft and Holo and it's really amusing to read it, especially when Holo tries to grasp mercantile information. We also get to experience some more back story on Norah that the books didn't cover and makes her character come to life a bit more, especially with the main author being the writer of the novels.
Wonderful art work continues bringing the books to life and transitioning the anime to pages. Since they are traveling to a really huge city the art to make it feel realistic needs to be really well drawn and boy do they accomplish that. All the people are created so seamlessly and you can clearly tell the emotions on their face that the artist is trying to convey at the time. Even the outfits and buildings have so much detail that you can things apart.
More and more I am glad I have purchased these issues of the manga. It's really cool to see the characters come to life on the pages; especially since you can tell the artist has a bit of their style going into the character drawings. Being a fan of the series in general, I really love reading more story content of the S & W world with the back story of Norah. I definitely recommend this issue to those who have read the manga so far.
~ Written: 06-12
* Stays true to the novel/anime
* Holo and Kraft have a bunch of back and forth banter
* More Norah back story
* Art work shines in this issue with the bigger city
* This volume doesn't have any minor nudity, even though it still has a warning