Title: Record of Wortenia War #4
Author: Ryota Hori
Format: Light Novel
The war has changed yet again: after an unexpected surrender, and Lupis failing to bargain well for her win, Ryouma is simply left to mop up what’s left of the fighting. Of course, he’s intent on eliminating every enemy he can, which leads to an odd showdown with the man responsible for dragging him into the civil war in the first place.
This volume finally reveals more directly what’s been happening back home due to Ryouma’s disappearance. As expected, nobody quite knows what to make of someone of his size and training just up and vanishing—but his grandfather seems to have more knowledge than he should. And the twist here will be interesting to see play out in future volumes (although I really hope his grandfather’s presence manages to avoid the worst outcomes).
Like before, the war changes substantially from something that happens almost immediately: most of the opposition surrenders. The important thing to remember here is that this is a CIVIL war, which leaves most of the participants the option of trying to side with whomever they think will be the winner in an effort to minimize damages to themselves. So rather than focus on the last battle, this book is more concerned with Ryouma trying to tie up the loose ends.
It’s also interesting to me how the issue of reward was handled. Ryouma was nearly single-handedly responsible for Princess Lupis’s win, and nobody can deny that. But that poses a problem for their side, because Ryouma isn’t actually from their country, nor is he particularly interested in supporting them going forward. He’s too mercenary for their tastes. And Lupis, in listening to her own fears, is seeding the creation of the very thing she was trying to stamp out.
It felt a bit jerky to have the war spread out over so many books, but overall it’s a good arc, although probably one best read together. I rate this book Recommended.