Book Review: School-Live! Volume 9

School-Live! Volume 9 cover

I hope that everyone is having a good week, regardless of how it is being spent.

Things are going fairly well, with some annoyances that interrupted my schedule, and I can still do what I like.

Last month, I had ordered a total of 8 books, and the last of them was cancelled by a third party, for some unknown reason, but I managed to snag a copy of the title anyway.

Today, I will be reviewing that title, which called is School-Live! Volume 9 by Norimitsu Kaihou.

As I have given a series synopsis in an earlier post, I will not go over it again.

Things have become worse for everyone in the area and one group is starting to suspect the most obvious element.

However, somebody has a different take on a possible cause, and when a member of Yuki's group divulges the hypothesis to others, things only get worse, as they girls continue to get ready to leave.

I kind of liked this book.

From the moment that I opened up this book and started reading it, I found myself engrossed in it enough that I did not want to put it down for any reason, though I do have to satisfy the same needs as everyone else.

If I had to say why, it would be because of how it started.

While there are any number of ways to start something off on the right foot, especially depending on the kind of story and whether it is standalone work or part of a series, manga tends to usually be part of a serialization and that means that the next installment has almost no choice but to pick up where the last one left off, though this is not particularly the case with something that is considered a slice of life series, such as Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid.

In the previous volume, things ended off with Yuuri being captured and one of the militant group members gave off a weird expression, just before the teddy bear that was Ruu was seen just left behind, which made me wonder what exactly was going on.

By starting things off like this, I was able to get back into relatively quickly, as I was reminded a little of how the last volume ended.

As much as I would want to give Norimitsu Kaihou a big round of applause for providing such a great start though, the real credit goes to Houbunsha, or whoever they had compile these chapters into volumes.

If they had not started the volume off like they did, I would have been a little disappointed, because the stuff that is normal for zombie apocalypses or other kinds of survival stories would not have been able to come about in a way that made sense and would have made this series not look as good as it did back in the early volumes.

Fortunately, that did not happen, which makes it so that I can still use this series as a good breather.

Hopefully things will be able to stay like this in the future install, as that would be able to keep the fans happy, but seeing as this is the latest volume both here and in its home country, according to the series page on Baka-Updates Manga, and is said to be on hiatus, I am not too sure how long I can continue following this, even if I truly wanted to.

I also liked how there was discussion of how people are becoming zombies.

One of the things that I do not like too much is how the main way to turn into a zombie is to be bitten by one or in the case of something like The Walking Dead, at least in the original source, according to a page found on a wiki dedicated to the series, through means that would probably classify the pathogen as an STD or STI, because it has been done over and over again to the point where it seems like writers either have too little creative freedom or just seem lazy, since there is not really too much that one can do with them.

However, early on in this series, the audience is told that the zombie outbreak is a pathogen, because they administer what appears to be a vaccine, and they now discuss how the usual means of zombie infection that they perceived to be something that could only contracted through being bitten may not be correct because of the massive range it covered.

While I am not exactly glad to see that the zombies in this series came from a pathogen, since it makes it seem like this is just a rip off of Walking Dead, I am glad that Norimitsu is at least trying to explore what this virus is and how it works, rather than just leaving it as something very mysterious and focusing only on people killing each other because they could no longer trust each other.

If this did not come up in this volume, I probably would have been done with the series, regardless of whether this series was on hiatus in its home country, because there is only so much that can be done with trying to show how the current events are breaking the characters down to the point where they could no longer be considered human, as well as make things seem just as boring as the anime was.

Thankfully, That did not happen, and Norimitsu remembered how there are viruses and pathogens are not all exactly the same, which makes me really want to see where the series goes, even though it is on hiatus.

The thing that I liked the most though was how this volume ended.

While a good beginning can and should capture the audience's attention quickly, the way things end can be just as important.

In a standalone work, the ending can determine whether a reader will ultimately like or hate a work or, in the case of a series like this, can determine if the reader will come back for more.

In this volume, after things go from bad to worse, once it is revealed that the pathogen may be airborne, a person in the militant is killed by being pushed into the zombie horde and the perpetrator runs off in a car, thinking that they will survive, but zombies start to surround the car.

Now, it might be easy to see what would come next, if this series were not on hiatus, but it was executed so well that I just want to see the character go down in flames so badly that I wish the series was still being published.

If this had not happened, I would have been fine leaving this series behind and not returning, which I might do anyway because of its status of being on hiatus, because these characters were becoming more irrational and so something like this happening would make a lot sense, and by not having this happen, the characters would be unbelievably rational.

Fortunately, Norimitsu remembered that humans are not exactly rational creatures, and it help to end things on a positive note, though Houbunsha, or whoever compiled the chapters into volumes, do deserve some credit too for ending things on such a high note.

Outside of those things, I cannot think of anything else that I particularly liked, at least that could not be added into what I already talked about.

Because my attention was grabbed quickly, the pathogen turning people into zombies started being explored, and the end was able to get me interested in the series, even though it might not resume for a while, this was a fairly decent read.

Although I liked the book, there are some issues.

However, aside from things that are too minor to talk about, such as typos, nothing bothered me too much.

As a result, I will have to say that there is nothing worth mentioning.

Considering how there was quite a bit to like, and none of the positives were only just okay, this was definitely worth reading.

I mainly recommend this to fans of School-Live!, as they will like this the most.

As for everyone else, you are free to give it a try, but because this series is on hiatus, making this the latest release worldwide, it might be better to look for something else.

If you liked this review and would like to see more, please consider either supporting me on Patreon or buy the reviewed title from Book Depository, who offers free shipping to many countries around the world, so that I can find more worthwhile reads for you guys.

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Copyright © 2015 Bryce Campbell. All Rights Reserved.