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Tales of Wedding Rings: Volume 2
Bryony Stibbons
Author: Bryony Stibbons

A life-long board game addict, but anime newbe, Bryony is gradually getting hooked!

Tales of Wedding Rings: Volume 2

Distributor
Yen Press
Author/Artist
MAYBE
Price
£11.99

When we last saw Satou, he had travelled to a fantasy world and married the girl of his dreams. However, he also now has the added responsibility of becoming the defender of the realm and having to marry four additional princess’ in order to get the strength to battle evil forces. Marrying each princess will earn him one of the realm's powerful wedding rings that only the ‘Ring King’ can bear, but being one of five brides isn’t any girl's dream surely?

Read my full review of volume one here.

Volume two starts with Satou and his love/new wife Hime (Princess Krystal to her people) arriving at Romca - the kingdom of the elves. Along with their companions (Alabaster the sage and Prince Marmarugias Gisaras (lets just call him the Prince) they are here to meet the Elven princess and protector of the ‘Ring of Wind’, Nefritis, in the hope that she will also marry Satou and endow him with power.

Princess Nefritis is shy, fearful of the outside world and fiercely protected by her older brother, making it very difficult for Satou to convince her to join them. In fact, Satou ends up being imprisoned by the elves and eventually has to rely on the help of one of the elf elders to gain his freedom and win the affection of the princess.

An attack from monsters from the Abyss gives Satou the chance to show off his powers, defend his allies and win the affection of the new princess. It still isn’t plain sailing from here though, as having two wives is potentially more problematic that it is pleasurable.

Satou and Hime have still yet to consummate their marriage and now there is another woman on the scene. Although the elven princess at first appears to respect that Satou and Hime have a bond of love and her marriage to him is merely one born from necessity, it soon becomes apparent that she wants him for herself. Throw into the mix the elf elder who is creepily keen to observe the mating rituals of other species and the result is a rather bizarre scene of nudity in the local baths. Thankfully this avoids becoming completely gratuitous.

This part of the tale ends with the group leaving Romca and heading off in search of a third bride!

Throughout, you learn about the history of the elves and some of the stories that make them fearful of outsiders, which gives the story good context and detail. The fact that Satou defending the realm is the only thing that changes the resolve of the elves and persuades the princess into marriage was completely predictable and I hope this same framework isn’t used for every potential wife. However, some of the side-stories add a bit more interest and unpredictability.

There is no colour artwork in this volume, unlike the first, but there are some insert pages between chapters that give information on the Elven culture, which really helps set the scene, give depth to the story and help you understand the characters. There is a great selection of characters that are really well designed to give each species a distinct look and feel. The translation is spot on and the story moves at a great pace – I was unable to put it down until I finished it.

I’m not a huge fan of the more echii and sexual elements of the story, but this only makes up a fraction of the narrative and I am sure there are plenty of people out there who will enjoy this aspect. Still high marks from me here overall and I'm looking forward to the next instalment!

9
A tale of romance nestled among action, adventure and lust.
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