Light Novel Review: Date A Live – Kurumi Killer [Volume 3]

“I’m a Spirit”

These are the words of Kurumi Tokisaki, a new transfer student in Raizen High School. Everyone’s reaction varied from confusion to dumbstruck, but not Shidou Itsuka. For only he knew the true meaning behind those words. Shidou gets even more anxious when the self-proclaimed Spirit asked him to give her a tour of the school. And to add to his troubles, another girl named Mana is saying that she’s his actual brother. What will Shidou do…?

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Kurumi Killer is an interesting addition to the series, like the newest heroine introduced, Kurumi Tokisaki. By providing a more aggressive Spirit (in more ways than one), Shidou’s view of Spirits is challenged and his ability to handle three girls also gets tested. While Kurumi is the main focus for this volume, we don’t officially get a conclusion to her arc as the light novel drops a cliffhanger ending with the appearance of another new Spirit.

After a bit of meandering around with Tohka and her lack of knowledge about bras, the story begins with Kurumi entering Raizen High School as a transfer student and asking Shidou for a tour of the school. From here, Kurumi shows off her flirtatious nature and giving Shidou a very dangerous vibe. Given that no Spirit has given him this type of situation before and her motives for doing this are vague, the situation has become unpredictable for the crew of Ratatoskr. It becomes increasing so when both Tohka and Origami are suspicious of Kurumi’s behavior (the former for her forward seduction attempts, and the latter for proclaiming herself as a Spirit) And so Shidou goes on a date with all three of them at the same time to: quell Tokha’s anger, make sure Origami doesn’t get wary, and get more information on Kurumi.

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Surprisingly, the dates goes peculiarly well. Kurumi’s bold actions make her interesting than the previous Spirits and makes herself the first Spirit to have a clear objective. As for the triple dates, the transitions between the girls were nicely interlaced and to add a bit of narrative humor, the effects of going a date with three girls was fun to read. It proved to be a nice contrast to the much darker turn this light novel was heading towards.

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Until now there have only two completely different perspectives: Shidou’s and Origami’s. Shidou is the ideal embodiment for the objectives of Ratatoskr while Origami is the ideal embodiment for the objectives of the Anti Spirit Team (AST). With the inclusion of the new characters, Mana and Kurumi, the former brings in another organization that are interested in Spirits, and the latter has her own hidden objectives. These new plot elements help lead the reader to believe that the influence of Spirits are getting revealed slowly to infer future complications and well as a deeper history involving our main characters..

Shidou encounters two new girls that add more complication to his life. On the spirit side, we have of Kurumi Tokisaki and the on the AST side, we have Mana Takamiya. Like I said earlier, Kurumi has a very flirtatious and seductive nature. She’s the most assertive out of the heroines, using very suggestive dialogue and actions with him. Kurumi retains her aggressive behaviors throughout the volume but as the story goes on, she becomes more violent (see title). We aren’t given full closure on her character and her objectives but because of the events that happen in the end, her conclusion becomes atypically abrupt.

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Mana Takamiya is the second character that get introduced in this volume and she’s a very interesting character in terms of her background. By having her play the role of Shidou’s biological sister, it causes a mystery that neither Shidou and Kotori knew up to this point. Their history is still information we don’t know and how its brought up along with other previously established plot elements implies a very cryptic history.

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From having Shidou interact with these two characters, Date A Live brings up a concept it hasn’t yet fully addressed, death. Sure, Date a Live have recognized that people could possible die from spatial quakes and people have died from them, but us as the reader and Shidou hasn’t personally experienced someone physically die. Both Mana and Kurumi make Shidou recognize this part about Spirits and it causes Shidou to fully address the issue.

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The illustrations keep the same amount of quality from the previous two volumes. It’s a bit of a personal opinion but the appearances and outfits for the characters look very nice.

Kurumi Killer features more assertive approaches to the Date A Live series, including the effects of killing a person, the foreshadowing of a complicated history, and how to effectively date three girls at the same time as well as quell the rivalry between two sisters. Unfortunately, the volume ends with a cliffhanger, leaving the last big event unconcluded with a sudden bombshell of a plot element. Regardless, this edition of Date A Live was a very good volume.

Rating: Recommended – Highly Recommended.


Author: Kōshi Tachibana

Illustrator: Tsunako

Fan Translated by the Date A Live Translators

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