By Eri Shiduki and Kasumi Nagi. Released in Japan by Ichijinsha. Released in North America by J-Novel Club. Translated by David Evelyn.
The second volume of this romance sees our heroine and her beast-headed husband traveling to a seaside religious community, hoping to find a way to cure both her condition and his. Unfortunately, there seems to be something very wrong in the Holy Land. There’s maids and princesses trying to take Rosemarie down, and she herself is seemingly possessed to leave the room late at night to try to return to the gods. That said, Rosemarie is made of sterner stuff in this book compared to the last one. Can she overcome mind control with the sheer power of being kind to people? Can she manage to tear herself away from her beloved bucket? And can she actually manage to have a direct conversation with Claudio where they both admit that they’re in love with each other? All the ingredients are here for a classic romantic potboiler. We may even discover what happened to her and Claudio as children!
The mystery is not really a good reason to read this (for a moment I thought we were going to meet a non-evil clergyman, but he was an undercover sorcerer, so…), but the romance holds up well, provided you’re OK with these two socially awkward kids doubting themselves and saying absolutely the wrong thing all the time. The reader will no doubt be sympathizing more with Heidi, Rosemarie’s maid who is somewhat desperate for her lady to realize that she is loved. That said, we do make some definite strides here. Rosemarie realizes that she’s actually jealous when Claudio is dealing with other women who have their eye on him, and that fixing his mana issue and leaving to go back home would devastate her. As for Claudio, he can still be a jerk when he’s trying to be kind (which leads to the funniest part of the novel, as his sorcerer friend literally kicks him in the ass for screwing up a romantic moment), but he too finds it in himself, albeit accidentally, to admit that he loves her.
The biggest problem with this book occurs at the end, when you finish it and realize that a lot of things are still up in the air. Rosemarie and Claudio’s problems have still not been solved, and they’ve still not consummated their marriage. They have admitted they love each other to their faces, but I was hoping for a bit more. Sadly, the second volume appears to be the final one, so this is all the closure that we’re going to get. I want to see more of these characters. I want Alto and Heidi to hook up (there’s zero evidence for this, but I want it to happen anyway). And there was almost no gardening! Am I going to be forced to turn to Bakarina for all my gardening heroine needs? Oh well. Despite a “you’re cancelled” feeling, only for light novels rather than manga, this has bee a fun and romantic little series. I recommend it for those tired of isekai.