First off, I am super stoked to find there’s no isekai anything invading Let This Grieving Soul Retire Woe Is the Weakling Who Leads the Strongest Party as it’s a pure fantasy story! Yahoo! HUZZAH! I. Am. Ecstatic. All right, let’s goooooooo!!! *Coughs & Clears Throat* Ahem... Okay, now that that’s out of my system, let’s take a gander at this slightly quirky story that I’m really digging. If you couldn’t tell.
Right away we’re introduced to Krai Andrey, our main man, but he would rather he wasn’t the lead(er). So instead of learning about how this fantasy world works directly through him, we learn a lot indirectly through him via his interactions with Rhuda Runebeck. Rhuda is a Level 3 Treasure Hunter and she’s hoping to get in with some upper-crust Clans who just happen to be holding a joint recruiting event both she and Krai are attending. Along with Rhuda we meet Tino Shade, a prodigy, and Gilbert Bush, the hotheaded-type, who are also looking to join for various reasons. There’s just one problem... so is everyone else! Things are crowded, not to mention uncomfortable in more ways than one, and Krai really doesn’t want to be there for – sorta spoilery – reasons which you soon find out.
I think why I like Grieving Soul so much is that it plays a classic, tried and true way of introducing readers to characters and the workings of the world through well written and highly entertaining scenes. Ultimately, for me, it boils down to Krai’s numerous attempts at keeping himself from being recognized, and later on shirking his responsibilities...er, responsibly? Krai’s personality might sound annoying at first, but I think he’s a really interesting character. Grieving Soul’s main hook is: Is Krai Andrey actually as super talented as everyone says he is or are his skills really just as mediocre as he insists? If it wasn’t for Krai there honestly wouldn’t be much of a story.
Throughout this first volume I kept wavering between the two as I read on. It’s easy to believe that Krai really is an untalented wimp like he paints himself to be, but then little snippets of his underlying skills kept flaring up. He’s also super knowledgeable about weapons called relics and he’s got a larger-than-life reputation among the Clans. He has to have earned all of that somehow, right? Granted, it could just be his years of experience shining through; maybe he really is as mediocre of a treasure hunter as he says and he just happened to be blessed with the best of fortunes? Even though I’m sure I already know the answer, it’s fun to be misled when you’re in on the joke, even if you don’t already know the punchline.
It bears mentioning two radically different anime out there that make for a good mash-up to describe Grieving Soul. The first is Suppose a Kid from the Last Dungeon Boonies Moved to a Starter Town because Krai may have just had a super high baseline to compare himself with all these years. Much like Lloyd, Krai may simply feel underpowered because of who his peers were, but for those around him, they’re dumbfounded by his mad skills. Now keep that comparison in mind and mix in some of the responsibility dodging found in Tanaka-kun Is Always Listless and apply Tanka’s loveable-slacker personality. Krai himself is not exactly lazy, but he works really hard at extracting himself from his responsibilities. Sometimes through any means necessary, and that creates opportunities for many highly amusing moments.
At this point I’ve talked an awful lot about Krai so I do need to mention that this story is about more than just him. Rhuda, Tina, and Gilbert were mostly relegated to supporting cast roles for this first volume and we don’t really get to learn too much about them in depth, which I can appreciate. Grieving Soul isn’t rushing things and each cast member looks to get their own moment to shine going forward. The first volume does what a first volume should do, serving as a solid base upon which future pieces of the story will be built. I’m really looking forward to Volume 2 where the dive into the Treasure Vault Dungeon will get underway. Which we all know Krai isn’t willing to participate in, but will… eventually… whether he wants to or not because at least he’s got a conscience! Sign me up for more adventures as the “Is he/isn’t he?” suspicions hovering around Krai have really piqued my interest. I’m sure all will be revealed in due time, but until then Grieving Soul really feels like it’s going to be a great journey!
Let This Grieving Soul Retire Manga Volume 1 features story by Tsukikage and art by Rai Hebino and Chyko.
Cri makes an oath with his friends to become the strongest hero in the world...but his hopes are quickly dashed when he realizes that his talents lie elsewhere. Despite the reality check, the expectations from the people around him seem to rising exponentially every day! Now Cri must deal with this huge misunderstanding as well as the outrageous consequences!Add to CartLearn More