By CHIROLU and Truffle. Released in Japan as “Uchi no Musume no Tame Naraba, Ore Moshikashitara Maou mo Taoserukamo Shirenai” by Hobby Japan. Released in North America digitally by J-Novel Club. Translated by Matthew Warner.
Like a lot of second volumes, this one seems to have a bit of an “wait, I have to write more? Well, OK…” feel to it. For the most part it’s the continuing adventures of Adventurer Dale (whose last name, we find out, literally MEANS adventurer, as it’s more of a title), and his adorable adopted Devil daughter Latina (who has aged a couple more years since the first book). Since Latina is now the main reason for Dale’s existence (jokes about him being a pushover for his girl continue to be the main running gag of the series), he’s decided to take her home to meet his family. And so most of the book is a leisurely trip across the continent, as Latina experiences different cultures, tries new foods (and gets better and better as a cook), and we learn a tiny bit more about her past. That said, this book also lacks the dark yet extremely compelling climax the first book had.
Instead we get a mellower climax that introduces us to Dale’s family proper, a village of powerful folks connected to the Earth, led by his matriarch grandmother. Dale was, in fact, supposed to be the future head of the clan, but he had the calling to be an Adventurer and protect the world, so he does that calling, and his younger brother gets the clanship – and the girl, as he’s getting married while they’re there. We get a bit more of Dale’s past, mostly with occasional thoughts from other people’s POV on how he used to be, but I really wish woe could get an extended flashback or something. It’s all very well and good to say Latina changed him for the better so much, but honestly we’re only familiar with Goofy Dad Dale, so it’s got less impact. As for Latina, she still unintentionally wraps everyone around her little finger by virtue of being really good and smart and pretty and diligent and earnest and pure.
Latina also gets some rather nasty nightmares when she wakes up and Dale’s not around, brought about by too much family all at once and hearing talk about getting married and moving on. And this is an issue, as Latina is VERY attached to Dale, and she to him. For the most part, this is dealt with in the standard way you’d expect in a Japanese light novel – his family make the occasional lolicon joke, Dale says “OMG I’m her father!” a lot, and Latina misses all this subtext. But honestly, I think in the next book she’s a couple years older, and there’s a few books still to go, and I am throwing out there that this is a really enjoyable series, but I would not be surprised at all if it ended with Dale and Latina in a romantic relationship, which is obviously far more acceptable in a Japanese work. I don’t actually know any spoilers, and if I’m totally wrong I apologize, but I’ve been burned a bit too often by this sort of thing. Latina is not the perpetual 5-year-old Yotsuba.
That said, nothing has really happened yet, and what you’re left with is a heartwarming and sweet story of a father and his adopted daughter, going on mild yet entertaining adventures. If the series keeps giving us that, I’m perfectly fine with it.