Book Review: Aria the Scarlet Ammo Volume 1


It has been a while since I posted, huh? Fortunately, I have not completely forgotten about this place.

Recently, I got a book from eManga. Today, I will be reviewing that book, which is called Aria the Scarlet Ammo Volume 1 by Chugaku Akamatsu.

Butei High is no ordinary school. In this school, students are trained to become butei, otherwise known as an armed detective, and they can even take on jobs like any other butei.

Kinji Tohyama is among one of the students at Butei High who wants to leave, due to something he inherited and his horrible experiences with it, but his plans are ruined when he meets a highly skilled butei and becomes involved in an incident involving a string bombings and he must work with the fellow butei to find out who is responsible.

At first, I was not too sure about this book. However, having finished it, I have to say that I kind of liked it. After the first few pages, I did not really want to stop reading. The pacing seemed to be good, because I felt like I got to know the characters. This is certainly a nice thing for newcomers to series. After all, if one cannot get to know the characters, there would not be any reason to like them, or they might turn out to be like Touma in A Certain Magical Index and be a character that needs to die, though he was not as bad in A Certain Scientific Railgun S as he is in his own series. I also liked how there was a lot of action. Now, I may care more to see an actual story where characters learn from their experiences, like how in Full Metal Alchemist Brotherhood Edward Elric realized that even with alchemy that there were still things that he could not do, thus sacrificing his ability to perform alchemy to bring Al back, but I am not entirely against seeing action, considering all the things I am told that happens in Butei High. I also liked the fact there were parts that were funny. The funniest was when Aria, the lead female and titular character, told Kinji that she would not want to commit suicide with Kinji even if it kills her. Either she does not know what the definition of suicide is or she really did not think out her response very well. Outside of that, I cannot really think of anything else that stood out to me. The fact that I felt like I knew the characters and that it drew me in quickly make this book seem decent.

Although I liked the book, there are certainly some issues. First, I could not really stand the profanity. True, this is not my first exposure to such words, but it could have been whittled down quite a bit, since it was present in places that just did not feel natural, much more so because it was coming from the person responsible for all the events in book, not victims. For example, when Kinji become involved in an incident in the beginning, a voice says, “A bomb has been freaking planted on this bike.” This sounds more like a bomb was found on the bike instead of a threat, unless the criminal was trying to draw Kinji’s attention towards it to begin with. Then again, with how often people seem to use profanity in our society, I am not sure that everyone will agree with me. Fortunately, it did not take too much away from the enjoyment of the book. The other thing that kind of annoyed me was that there did not really seem to be any editing or proofreading done. While things seem to flow well, there are quite a few instances where either the wrong word was used or words were missing entirely. Yes, nothing is perfect in our world and I do not expect things to be perfect, but these kinds of issues should have been dealt with before the book got released. On the other hand, since this does not affected flow of the book too much, I can overlook it a bit, but I really hope that the group that Digital Manga assigned to this series improves. There were other things that I was not too impressed with, but compared to the two already mentioned, they had even less affect on the book. While my two annoyances did not hurt the book too much, I think that fixing them would have made this book way more enjoyable.

Considering that there was nothing majorly wrong, this was definitely worth reading. I recommend this to fans of action and comedy, as well as fans of Aria, though I cannot say if fans of the manga and/or anime would like this. As for everyone else, unless my annoyances with this book bug you too much, I recommend giving this a shot.

What are your thoughts on Aria the Scarlet Ammo Volume 1? Do you agree or disagree with my views? Do you have anything to add? Feel free to comment.

Copyright © 2013 Bryce Campbell. All Rights Reserved.