In Quantity 7 of the Bungo Stray Canine gentle novel collection, we explored the origin of how Dazai and Chuuya first met and joined the Port Mafia. Quantity 8 takes place a 12 months later the place we discover the 2 competing to change into a brand new govt member of the group. However when Chuuya finds himself targetted by the King of Assassins, the 2 might need to put their variations apart as soon as extra.
Chuuya has made a reputation for himself within the Port Mafia by managing a gemstone black market along with a gaggle referred to as the Flags. Whereas celebrating Chuuya’s first anniversary of being within the Port Mafia, the group is approached by a detective from Europole referred to as Adam Frankenstein, an autonomous humanoid supercomputer designed for legislation enforcement.
Adam warns Chuuya that he’s being focused by the King of Assassins (recognized in any other case as Paul Verlaine) and to cooperate with Europole’s investigation. Wielding the facility of gravity, Chuuya argues that he and the Port Mafia don’t have anything to concern from Paul, however not lengthy after he’s captured by Paul who reveals that the Flags have all been murdered by his hand and to give up. He additionally tells Chuuya that they’re brothers, and he’s prepared to kill everybody Chuuya cares about to get his method.
After all, Chuuya desires revenge for the homicide of his buddies and finds himself with no selection however to crew up with Adam. Whereas Adam’s fight skills are greater than ample to be Chuuya’s accomplice, his character is much less finely tuned, and he finds himself continuously confused by Chuuya’s selections that are rooted in emotion and in contrast to the logical selections of an AI. Nonetheless, the 2 are decided to place a cease to Paul and their actions might even uncover extra about Chuuya’s historical past which stays shrouded in thriller.
Creator Kafka Asagiri feedback within the afterword that that is the top of the ‘Twin Darkish Previous Arc’, which tells of Dazai and Chuuya’s previous and due to that it crams in a variety of info. Not solely is it selecting up leftover plot threads from Quantity 7, but it surely’s additionally attempting to mix that with a brand new story and the introduction of latest characters. On the entire, I believe that is profitable and by the top of this guide, I felt happy each with the story and with Chuuya’s growth. Plus, in contrast to the earlier guide, this one hasn’t but been tailored into anime, so it was new content material!
Chuuya has lengthy puzzled if he was human or one thing artificially created and even when he learns the reply, will that change his way of life? Whereas this story is about defending town and his companions from a madman, Chuuya nonetheless wrestles with this query and bounces his ideas off of these round him. It’s one thing resolved on this arc, so within the manga and surrounding media, it’s not one thing we’ve seen him battle with earlier than and maybe that’s what makes it significantly compelling as we readers hope to see him attain a solution he could make peace with.
What I used to be a bit unhappy about is that, regardless of this being a continuation of Chuuya and Dazai’s historical past, we don’t get to see a variety of Dazai till nearer to the top. I respect that is due to Adam being current, but it surely’s at all times a lot enjoyable when Dazai and Chuuya are collectively that I couldn’t assist however need to see a bit extra of that. Not that we haven’t had loads of alternatives to take pleasure in that within the wider Bungo Stray Canine universe, it have to be mentioned…
Bungo Stray Canine Quantity 8 involves the West due to Yen Press and continues to be translated by Matt Rutsohn. The interpretation reads effectively with no points to notice, though the guide might have carried out with one other QA move since there are some typos right here and there. Nevertheless, it’s a very lengthy guide in comparison with the standard, so I’m not stunned some small points slipped by means of the cracks and so they’re actually not prevalent sufficient to damage anybody’s enjoyment.
This launch will get us caught up with the sunshine novel releases in Japan up to now, so we received’t be getting any extra for some time. Though this one got here out in Japan in early 2021 and I’d be shocked if one thing new wasn’t within the works for when the anime returns subsequent 12 months, so fingers crossed we’ll see extra quickly!
General, Quantity 8 of the Bungo Stray Canine gentle novel collection brings an finish to Dazai and Chuuya’s historical past collectively within the Port Mafia. This quantity exhibits us how their numerous relationships developed in addition to pitting the 2 towards a formidable foe. Definitely a narrative that followers of the franchise received’t need to miss!