If you’ve enjoyed the series so far, if you’re looking for a lovely lighthearted story, if you’re interested in Japanese bakemono-animals, if you like to have a little laugh 🙂
Expected Release: March 23, 2021
Legends say that Senzou the Black Fox is one of the most vicious and powerful supernatural beasts to ever roam the land. At least, he used to be. Now, 300 years after he was imprisoned by the Sun Goddess for his bad behavior, Senzou is back — in the form of a small black fox with no powers! Tasked with protecting a young tanuki called Manpachi as he fulfills various tasks for the gods, Senzou must earn his powers back by learning how to be a good guardian to the energetic little pup. Though Senzou is a grumpy and reluctant companion at first, even a hard-hearted fox can be tamed by cuteness… and the little tanuki quickly learns there are some family ties that aren’t decided by blood.
In the third volume, Senzou, Manpachi, and the wolf clan are among humans and investigating a string of missing bakemono. The wolf Hagiri takes this chance to find a small cat spirit he has a bond with, but he can’t ask his clan for help looking for a cat! Hagiri and Senzou make an unlikely duo, but they collide in the search as they discover everything may be more connected than they realized.
This is a strong continuation of the series for sure. In the first installation, we met Manpachi and Senzou and saw their relationship develop. In the second, we learned more about some of the other bakemono they deal with, particularly the wolves. In this one, they’re out of the forest and stuck dealing with some problems around humans. Every book has had a unique plot or element to it, and I hope to see that continue as the world grows more robust.
Being forced to deal with some issues in the human city, the bakemono get a lot of chances to really mess things up and have some ridiculous interactions as they try to conceal their true nature from the clueless humans. On top of that, we meet a new clan type of bakemono who are ready to be a thorn in everyone’s side.
The story focuses on love and friendship of the wolf Hagiri and a special friend of his, while continuing to develop the relationship between Manpachi and Senzou as well. And my personal favorite Tachibana is of course still lolling around. 🥰 This volume wasn’t quite as strong a collection as the previous two for me. I enjoyed it and have no problems with it, but the other two were that much funnier, or cleverer, or surprising. It’s more that they were really good, and this one is good too. But in comparison, that’s why this one is a little simpler as opposed to the higher ratings of the others.
If you haven’t read the second book in a while, I recommend re-reading it or at least the last few chapters. This volume begins right where the action left off last time, and a few reminders of who everyone is and what trouble their facing will probably help give you a smooth return.
Thank you to NetGalley and Tokyopop for a free advanced copy in exchange for an honest review!