The Rising of the Shield Hero #9 (Light Novel)

Title: The Rising of the Shield Hero #9

Author: Aneko Yusagi

Format: Light Novel

Naofumi’s plans to hunt down Kyo got a little sidetracked when he followed Kyo back to another world. But now that he’s reunited with his party again, they’re making the preparations needed to fight. Except that Kyo isn’t exactly sitting back waiting for them. He’s prepared a number of obstacles. And he’s also got the power he’s stolen from the Spirit Tortoise to use to fuel his incredible magic.

This book had so many parts that left me laughing so hard I had to put the book down for a moment.

“You think you stand a chance against all of us together?” I laughed, sounding like a cheap pirate. Oh well.
“Naofumi, that’s what people say before they lose.”

And how he then trolls the enemy. It’s another stellar defensive ability—like his Hate Control skill without the need to actually activate a skill. Naofumi naturally being a jerk can distract human enemies.

Also I love the fact that Naofumi is still gaining more and more really bizarre skills that he can turn to clever uses. He unlocks rickshaw abilities, which passively boosts whatever he’s carrying, so Raph-chan and Filo start perching on him during fights to take even better advantage of his boosts (PLEASE let this be an anime . . . I really want to see this. And his expression.)

The scene where all the animals are curled up against him is also really cute.

And his armor is as amazing (ly bad) as ever. He can’t escape from weapon shop owners who want to deck him out to look like a villain. Better yet, this set is cursed!

“What if I try it on and it seriously injures me?”
“We’ll just have to rush to get you treated. I know a good doctor.”

And:

Judging from what I’d seen of her work so far, I was pretty impressed with Romina’s craftsmanship. That is, if I ignored the somewhat murderous intentions of the armor I was wearing.

Although my FAVORITE part is absolutely the locked door. Naofumi’s dead on about what to do about it (and Kizuna’s reaction is funny just because it’s such a gamer way to think about things), and then when Raphtalia goes along with his plan it was even funnier. Even here, in this other world, he’s stuck working with people who are so much seeing this as a game they totally overlook the obvious.

“You want to solve puzzles, but that would imply that there are puzzles to solve. You think he left behind keys for us to find? I doubt it!”
Who would do something like that? He ’d have to be crazy to leave clues for invaders to come find him.
No—we were going to break down all the doors, find Kyo, and make him pay.

I’m a little sorry Yomogi doesn’t get much chance to develop. She gets a lot of page time, but since most of that is during the fight, it doesn’t do a whole lot for her as a character. That’s a shame even if she isn’t likely to show up again. Kyo also ended up unfortunately a lot flatter than I would have liked. Yomogi was the perfect opportunity to expound more on who he was in the past and provide specific memories, but that doesn’t happen. The other women don’t contribute anything to that either.

It’s a shame Naofumi will have to return “home” after this, as I quite enjoyed this time he got to fight with people who aren’t willfully stupid. The various digs at gamers and game mechanics were entirely on point, too. I rate this book Recommended.

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