Cooking with Wild Game (LN)


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Main protagonist is Tsurumi Asuta. 17 yrs old, 2nd year high schooler.

He was working as an apprentice cook at [Tsurumi-ya], managed by his father.

One day a fire broke out in [Tsurumi-ya], for the sake of his father’s cherished knife [Santoku Houchou – the japanese kind] he ran back inside to retrieve it and thus met his end. Before he knew it he awoke to an unknown environment. He was then attacked by a beast resembling a boar but a girl named ‘Ai Fa’ from the [People of Morihen] saved him. It was then that he realized he was really in a different world…

Associated Names
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Isekai Ryouridou
Related Series
Isekai Ryouridou (WN) (Web Novel)
Seiun wo Kakeru (2)
Risou no Himo Seikatsu (2)
The Elf Is a Freeloader (2)
Cook of the Mercenary Corp (1)
Parallel World Pharmacy (1)
Isekai Izakaya Nobu (1)
Recommendation Lists
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24 Reviews sorted by

DizzyMiko rated it
May 14, 2018
Status: v2c2
I have...a lot of small issues with this LN that add up to be a big problem. And all of these problems suddenly go from minor annoyances to turning me off entirely to this series. Let's start with the biggest problem.

Ai Fa.

I will admit, right now, I f*cking HATE tsundere characters. ESPECIALLY when they are tsundere for the sake of being f*cking tsundere. Taiga from ToraDora? Can go f*ck right off. Louise from Zero no Tsukaima? I'd rather have her head drilled into with a rusted screw than... more>> endure that pain in the ass. I vehemently hate tsunderes for the sake of being a tsundere, and Ai Fa fits into this mold so painfully well, it f*cking disgusts me. I'm all for strong female leads and though I don't care for role reversals, if it's well-written (which this isn't, I'll get to this point in a bit), I will enjoy it immensely.

Ai Fa is as tropy and tropy tropes trope. Stronger than male MC? Check. Is violent towards male MC constantly and for no real reason? Check. Hates being complimented but is secretly embarrassed by it? Check. Exists for the sake of "plot" after volume one? Check. Ai Fa is just another terrible character that I despise in a long list of terribly written tsundere characters.

Now to move onto Asuta.

I wanted to like him. I really did. However, there are a few things that bother me. Like many male protagonists that get thrown out of their element, they usually cling onto the first thing that they see, in this case Ai Fa. This is a god awful, terrible trope that is overplayed to the point where it brings me to tears in exasperation. "Imprinting", though, is something that does happen, especially after being saved from a dire situation. It's even more potent when in completely foreign lands. So when it comes to Asuta basically clinging to Ai Fa, it's understandable, psychologically. I don't even have a problem with this aspect. I just have a problem with Ai Fa as a character.

I had no qualms about how Asuta goes about things, slowing learning the customs of where he currently is, and trying not to offend his benefactor or the people around his benefactor. What I do have a problem with, though, is the sudden, and very obvious and drastic change in Asuta falling into the same goddamned cliche tropes that almost every JP LN male MC falls into. And that is being f*cking mentally ret*rded and not paying attention to the environment, and its customs.


What absolutely kills me, and kills all of my interest in this LN, is in v2 ch2, Asuta goes from being just slightly oblivious and dense (a trope well-overplayed and shows that Asuta is a 2 dimensional character, much like Ai Fa) to going full f*cking ret*rd talking with the youngest male Wu, Ludo Wu, leading straight into a scene where he walks right in onto the girls bathing when it's explicitly described in the chapter that that was obviously what they were doing, and not his s*upid f*cking excuse of "I thought they were washing/cleaning". This doesn't f*cking float when Ai Fa and Asuta bathe in the morning.


I do like my harem-style JP stories but as I've grown older, I become more and more annoyed at the "first girl MC encounters is the one he goes with, everyone else is fan service" bullsh*t trope that constantly happens as well. This very well looks to be the case considering

Asuta constantly asserts when he is questioned by one of the elder Wu men, Jizu Wu, that he only saw Ai Fa and only had eyes on Ai Fa (which implicates that, at the time I stopped reading, this is where the story is going to go). Unless something drastic happens, death happens, or Asuta leaves Ai Fa behind, I don't see this changing. And considering the drastic tone and feel of vol 2 vs vol 1 in leaning towards fan service and trying to please beta males with strong amazonian-type women, I don't see this changing, either, considering this is what sales. Sadly.

Now, the story premise.

This is actually what got me interested initially and is the reason why I haven't rated this as 1 star. There is something to be salvaged here, though I don't expect it will.

It's all about the food.

Unfortunately, there really isn't much else to go on besides that. Asuta uses his skills as a chef apprentice (I want to say sous chef but I don't think he had that kind of power in the kitchen working with his father) to make food delicious for people who don't know what delicious food is with the few ingredients they are allowed to use. This premise is quite interesting, but fails to amuse me on many levels. The biggest failure is that the description of how the food is prepared is half-assed, at best, and there really isn't much description beyond how certain ingredients are prepared. Don't expect Shokugeki no Souma levels of description when it comes to preparation and practicality of the dishes being prepared.


The part where the author describes how Asuta skins and dresses the Kiba, though, is quite interesting and makes me wonder if the author did that at some point in his life.


Sadly, all of this is completely ruined by the author's general lack of writing ability. I literally cannot tell you how often the author repeats himself, especially when he is describing Ai Fa. I'm almost certain that Ai Fa is the accumulation of fetishes that the author likes, as the consistent and repetitive nature of how Asuta looks at Ai Fa and how gorgeous she is is really f*cking annoying and breaks the flow of some of the scenes. It's painful and it continues to show that the author wants the reader (or just himself) to focus on Ai Fa and Ai Fa alone, as none of the other girls get nearly the attention that he showers with her. Not even the eldest daughter of the Wu clan, Vena Wu, pretty much forces a proposition for marriage, though not for the reason you might think.


I can't bring myself to even care enough to finish reading ch2 of vol 2 after the bullsh*t trope that's only there fore the sake of fan service and "comedic" value (this being subjective, I found it infuriating, not funny).

If you are going into this series for the food, just walk away, as that takes a back seat to the meniality of constantly pushed old, worn out tropes, power fantasies that's more annoying than sexy, and a f*cking tsundere character that I'd rather see die a painful, horrible death much like every other terrible tsundere character in just about every work of JP literature.

At the very least, Asuta doesn't seem to be a milquetoast, beta male. He has his convictions and though he's f*cking s*upid, and dense, he's a mildly likable character. So there is that. Don't expect good writing. <<less
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thetyrant68 rated it
January 9, 2018
Status: v3c6
This story is definitely worth a read. For one it tackles a subject which most Isekai-type stories don't.

Gender norms.

With the setting being a village deeply rooted in the traditions of their tribes/clans, the idea of a woman being a hunter and a man being a cook is not easily accepted.

The author showed the difficulties experienced by Ai Fa perfectly well and pretty much explained why she wasn't one who would fall in love easily. This alone gave her more depth as a character and made her engaging to read on,... more>> specially on the parts of the story that's told from her perspective.

As for the male lead, Asuta, he isn't your usual harem protagonist in that he's not dumb enough to keep on repeatedly committing the atrocities against the women around him and is more than capable of gently telling a girl he isn't interested. He also trolls Ai Fa and is not oblivious when it comes to love-related matters. It's also quite amusing to see him play the part of a clingy girlfriend.

The story is told progressively with the infodumping only occurring on food preparation but I admit to skipping those parts. The way of slowly unveiling what goes in a character's mind makes it more interesting to continue. Asuta may appear calm but there a few hints that his sanity is very fragile even though it appears he's taking it well.

It goes to show the author has good storytelling skills in that he doesn't reveal everything from the get-go. Worldbuilding is quite decently done, with the focus on the culture of the world Asuta found himself in. This brings yet another issue to the fore: Racism.

Overall, the story is mature in the sense that the story is not purely driven by hormones and focuses on the attempts of a lost soul trying his best to adapt to the situation specially now that he's involved in political issues in the village.

This story is not the best I've read but certainly one of the greatest. I find this story endearing since the only things Asuta has are the clothes on his back and his knowledge along with the knife he managed to bring along.

I've never been and never will be a fan of overpowered protagonists and their cheat skills that make them nothing more than annoying immature munchkins. <<less
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njmanga rated it
July 2, 2017
Status: c1
So far the series is great, good writing and good follow through in terms of story flow and the characters are well defined, I see some fun time occurring with this series, looking forward to new chapters
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siroBserver rated it
July 16, 2017
Status: c3
Well, this one is different to others where the protagonist is not an OP existence. I got fed up of OP characters and lacks of different views and adventure where all they do is overpower the enemies.

I fond this one very interesting and light heartening to read.

I like the story and the slow pace of the development of the story and the characters in it.

I like Asuta how he interacts to Ai Fa treating her like a food sometimes (because she smells like an ingredients to Asuta who has a... more>> fetishes in smelling foods. XD) which is funny to follow their story.

I think Ai Fa has a tendencies to be a "Tsundere" or something.

I will follow this story. I hope the translator continues to translate this one. <<less
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jojmist rated it
April 20, 2018
Status: v6 prologue
This novel has remained consistent throughout the entire series up to the current translated v6 prologue in terms of story and translation quality, and has me coming back to read more every week (1 chapter translated/released per week, but they are LONG, and I mean LONG chapters. Maybe 7 days worth of the typical daily released translated novel chapters). In fact, this is one of the few novels that I continue to follow week after week, and here's why: The MC is not a dense beta-male (he is a little... more>> beta-ish, but mostly for humbling purposes IMO) like in other Japanese light novels. He is keenly aware of who is interested in him and who isn't, and he has his own thoughts and reactions towards who he may or may not be interested in and the author makes this clear in the novel. He also stands up for himself, sometimes surprisingly so, when needed. Also, the build-up to the romance is slow (and is still developing), but constantly progresses with the plot. The main girl is also not a male-dependent idiot and can fend for herself, but due to her own past circumstances starts to depend on the MC in many ways that are logical, emotional, and well thought-out by the author. Though this novel can be slow at times, it is already translated up to the beginning of the 6th novel at the time of the review. To me, this is one of the greatest slice of life-romance-isekai novels that Japan has produced, ever, that has almost no fluff or BS (other than the side chapters, which you can skip without harming the story/plot). All in all, read this novel! It has a 4.5/5 stars for a reason. <<less
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sanqko qian
sanqko qian rated it
December 25, 2017
Status: v3c6
Definitely the best "isekai Japanese chef/cook" I've read. Why? Simply because the male MC doesn't have a cheat ability of having convenient Japanese ingredients as he wishes. While others WN's & LN's exploit the idea of introducing Japanese cuisine to the other worlders, CWN focuses more on what is "delicious" base on our common sense definition of the term itself.

... more>>

For example: When he introduces the blood-letting method to rid the meat of its bad-odor. Blood-letting a game is not exclusive to Japanese people and our male MC was aware of that as he didn't take too much credit for it. Also, the seasonings he uses. He didn't get too fixated on the absence of Japanese essentials like soy sauce & miso, but rather he make do on what was the other worlders currently have. This makes the male MC quite amazing as he started from scratch and by sheer will, hardwork, countless trials & errors, passion and burning curiosity continues to wow the other worlders and the readers with his amazing dishes each and every time. He doesn't always gets what he wanted but he doesn't mope around and wallow in disappoinment and whenever he impresses the other worlders, he doesn't get too c*cky and stay humble like always and I think as a reader, that what makes him likable and root for his success.

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grenfunkel rated it
August 6, 2017
Status: --
Great novel and HQ translation as expected of skythewood! What I really like about this novel is the reactions of other surrounding characters wherein they don't suddenly loves the food from modern earth. It shows that the otherworld also has its own tastes and culture. As of chapter 6 there is no harem which is a plus for me (if it becomes harem novel then hopefully the other women are fleshed out properly).
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Altair545 rated it
January 8, 2019
Status: v12c5
Isekai with an interesting twist I guess, no fighting, no saving the world, no fight against demons, and no harem? kind of ? just lots of cooking that somehow get the story entangled in political mess one after another.

lol well this is a character driven story with our main protagonist Asuta he's your typical japanese dude just that for once he isn't a complete blank slate he actually kind of has a personality about really enjoying cooking and wanting to let everyone in the place that helped him out enjoy... more>> good cooking as well, of course bringing over modern world cuisine will shake up the forest people he ended up with and help them start reclaiming the honor they lost, but still he is a cuck there's always tons of opportunities for him but he's always self-doubting himself and just thinking of himself as sh*t even though he's doing amazing stuff so yeah a regular japanese MC, but like My god he really is an infuriating character, he comes to like the honesty of the hunters living un the forest he ends up in but then he tales it way too far trying to keep them like that, saying ret*rded sh*t like culture being Evil, eating certain foods being poison to the mind cuz they're too delicious so they should keep eating dogshit, always saying he's just a patethic lowly chef in training even when he knows he's got skills no one can Match, looking down on city people cuz obviously they're all Evil, and of course being scared of any women that look his way, he's actually not the worst he does have a backbone at times and he changes his mind on a Lot of his s*upid ideas but jesus You really want to Best the sh*t out of him half the time for all the bullsh*t he spouts.

The story is pretty slow paced and it's also actually a political one, yeah guess you didn't see that coming when the main thing they focus on is cooking, but it's actually pretty interesting and pretty well done Asuta develops some new ways to eat a "cursed" meat that only the tribe he starts out with eats and he must somehow get the civilized people of the city to give it a chance.

As I said before this is all about the fun characters and we actually have some pretty good ones here starting with Ai Fa the very cute main female lead that is out to break all gender norms that her tribe has, she has a lot of very good moments and its very sweet seeing her develop, she starts the story in a very bad place but thx to Asuta she's able to one again be a part of her tribe and gain back a lot of things she had lost it's a pleasure to see her grow.

Asuta and Ai Fa meet a ton of characters while they develop cooking together and a lot from many different cultures but they mostly focus on the ones from the tribe, one problem I have here is that everyones names are not really that inspiring and you can easily be forgiven for forgetting and or confusing certain people still there's a ton of fun personalities here that you'll really enjoy reading about.

Everyone feels believable cuz the author does a great job giving enough time to every side character to make them feel real, they all have some great development and you really get invested in various side characters stories and how they'll turn out and while the main focus has been mostly on the tribe MC ended up at till now theres also quite a bit of variety with the people from the city they live close with.

Worldbuilding is pretty seamless as we learn a lot about the various cultures that live in this world from the people that visit MC's food stall from all the various parts of this world.

The political part is pretty damn interesting too, the tribe MC ends up with are treated as barbarians outcasts duo to various reasons and are having a pretty harsh time being exploited by the kingdom they live in, and well they really do live like barbarians lol, they see money and civilization as evil and only hunt dangerous beasts to survive, they live in a pretty dangerous forest but dont take any fruit due to a promise with the kingdom, people die from starvation when they cant hunt even if the place they live in is full of fruit.... Theyre commited these guys.

Everyone from the kingdom looks down/ is scared of them cuz they're all these huge dangerous hunters and the tribe people are just not well versed in the ways of political talk to ever be able to reason with treacherous politicians so its just sad all around for them.

So MC slowly starts getting people to realize the tribe's people are all just humans too and slowly getting more attention from the people at the top, again though MC is your typical beta Japanese cuck so he too always seems to underestimate himself and take bad deals but well he grows a spine as the series goes on.

As I said before Asuta of course gets the attention of many girls but still this isn't some sort of "gotta catch them all" and he actually even tells the girls that try and make a move clearly that he has no intention of being with them (yeah I know shocker) and he actually has a good reason for it, still it's pretty frustrating not seeing development between Ai Fa and Asuta since they have pretty good chemistry together....

A very fun read for anyone that likes this type of stuff do give it a chance. <<less
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Crimin rated it
December 15, 2017
Status: v3c4
Although this novel brings about some of the cliches that plague light novels, there is something very unique and appealing about this well written story. This is a great example of how the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Most characters do not deviate from the typical archetypes but their presence in tandem with the unique setting and story elevates this story above many other slice of life novels. I strongly recommend that you give the story a chance and at least read up to the second... more>> novel. <<less
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Clorox Is Cream
Clorox Is Cream rated it
July 24, 2017
Status: c1
I fell asleep 5 times reading the first chapter.
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dumdum rated it
May 6, 2018
Status: v6c3 part1
Perhaps like some readers/viewers, I wasn't expecting this cooking novel would be that good, even better. It's not how Asuta (mc) is talented or skilled to make dishes, but how the story and plot goes around.

The novel is good enough to be adapted into an anime series.
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mangotango rated it
March 5, 2018
Status: v4c4 part2
Its fun and somewhat believable. Its not some kind of cheat ability type story nor is it a gary stu story with modern ideas/technologies being brought into the world. It is basically isekai shokugeki no soma but with a good protagonist and delicious brown (warrior) heroine.
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AMetroid rated it
October 11, 2017
Status: v1c6
It's a simple story. MC shows up in other world, gets picked up by a local tomboy girl. The focus in the first volume is on the MC butchering a "wild bore" and making 2 dishes; improving the simple stew, and hamburger patties. The writing style is rather poor. It's simple declarative statements, dialog, and block descriptions when the MC enters a new area. A big plus is the world building, it's been relatively well done so far. The lack in knowledge in bleeding pray is some artificial s*upidity, but... more>> it's explained away in a smart way. The lack in cooking diversity is also explained as the tribe was transplanted to the area 80 years ago, so the tribe doesn't have a long history cooking with the local ingredients. (Though you'd think they would come up with some of the ideas in 80 years)

It will be interesting in seeing how the author can weave making new dishes in with an interesting plot line in the following volumes. My main hangup is the author's poor writing style. <<less
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BananaChi rated it
July 26, 2018
Status: v8c6
Asuta is a guy who went into a blazing fire to obtain his injured father's cooking knife and suddenly gets transported into an Amazonian-like village. The thing about this novel is that in most isekai stories the main character really does a very fast transition or just forgets about their family, and friends like they have never existed after the first chapter. Asuta remembers his father and his childhood friend he doesn't forget he carries his dad's knife as a memento that's what I like about this character. Eventually in... more>> the story he gets more attached to the female lead and the villagers and he gets anxious that if he gets to close or marries that he might suddenly vanish going back to his world in that blazing fire, so he chooses to stay at a distance.

This is a slow burn romance if that's what you are looking for but the moments between the male lead and female lead are very fluffy and heart-warming. Ai Fa is a strong female lead. The world-building is incredible you can picture these hunters hunting these wild-boars (Kiba) and their way of life, the style of cooking, and the post station town outside the village. It also surprised me when Asuta prepared a meal for Ai Fa and it wasnt the typical "Omgawd this is so yummy so delicious are you a god of cooking?" (lol) she actually just stares at him and says "Why do you want to put so much effort food is food." These villagers have eaten meat without no special seasons or fancy style of cooking its just their way of life its "We eat food to survive" So it takes awhile for them to get used to Asuta's cooking.

The translator for this series is doing a good job compared to the rest of the other light novels I have read on this site. Give it a read if you haven't yet :). <<less
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sometimes rated it
August 4, 2017
Status: v1c5
The background is currently limited to a narrow stretch of land in between two forests that supports a rather small splattering of settlements. The MC is an apprentice chef that arrives in a different realistic world (no magic/level as of yet) with a rather pragmatic group of tribals who eat simply to survive. Hes taken in by a shunned outcast and hes forced to learn the rules and traditions of the natives while he slowly starts spreading culinary deliciousness to the rest of the settlements.

As of writing he is just... more>> barely spreading his culinary skills outside of the household of his benefactor but I'm positive his cooking will spread further after overcoming his status of outcast due to his different appearance and status. (Oh yeah everyone is basically stronger than him including the women and as it so happens all the single women are scantily clad bombshells so theres that if it matters at all to you.)

The feeling of "MIND BREAK" after trying his dishes isn't too prevalent yet as the main love interest/benefactor/housemate/savior has been the only one to try his food but in the later chapters someone outside of his household chances upon a bite to set off a chain reaction. This leads to another family enjoying the opportunity to get MIND BROKEN as well but sadly translator-san only releases once a week so I'm waiting for the conclusion to that. Overall the beginning is great and although the buildup is rather slow because it takes around 5 chapters before anyone outside his house even notices his cooking abilities. If you're here for MIND BREAKS then youll probably only be slightly satisfied at least until the pace picks up most definitely after chapter 5. Translation is decent with a small handful of errors. Just all around light and fun read with potential (likely) romance in the near future. <<less
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Ruduen rated it
November 7, 2018
Status: v11c1
Fairly solid work on the whole. Unlike other Isekai, this has a fairly good sense of progression - rather than jumping ahead, incremental improvements and new changes actually feel impactful.

My main gripe is the pacing - after the first couple of chapters, most of the important features happen infrequently enough that it feels like the series is taking twice as long as the plot needs. This does give an opportunity to set up a more slice-of-life feel for things, but it can be a little bit awkward.
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AiPhee rated it
August 28, 2023
Status: v22c1
Don't read the Manga/Manwha and read the novels instead!!

If you like slice of life novels then I recommend this as a good read. The first few volumes focused heavily on Asuta and Ai Fa but I got invested into the story when the world-building of the author came to play. The dynamics of the People of the Forest, The Genos Post Town, the Nobles of Castle Town as well as the appearance of the other cities and hunters of Selva make for a wonderful web of characters.

There's a few fan... more>> service scenes for both male and female readers especially when you see the illustrations after. It also helps that this novel features a variety of age groups in its characters and they also have their own story arcs that are both independent and dependent o the main story arc.

That said, it really is a slower-paced novel as in-story

its only been 7 months for the whole 22 volumes

but if you also like slow-burn romance novels like me, then the interactions of Asuta and Ai Fa and the rest of the crew will make you frustrated, happy and exasperated at times.

If you like drama or action in your stories, this may not be it for you 😆 And I promise Ai Fa's tsundere-ism is not as pronounced as in the first few volumes. We'll get to see her as someone also dependendable for her young age.

Eagerly waiting for Volume 22 until 25 to come out 🤞 <<less
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PotatoLordBobo rated it
April 13, 2018
Status: v5c4
A very nice, wholesome, fleshed out reading experience. The characters in this series are very realistic and the storytelling itself is quite well done. It's rare to find an isekai story that doesn't feel like a boring cookie cutter story (Even though I kinda enjoy those every once in a while). 10/10 (5/5) Would recommend for anyone looking for a good read about living in another world without an overpowered main character or an unrealistic harem (as of this point there is no harem, and it doesn't seem like there... more>> will be one). Enjoy~



The only way that the MC could be considered overpowered is in the fact that he is the only person that knows how to properly treat and cook food so that it tastes good (that we know of)

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dtim rated it
April 10, 2018
Status: v5c4
I very rarely give five stars but I feel this one deserves it.

The characters are fleshed out, the MC especially. He has both strengths and weaknesses and comes across as a genuine person rather than another bland stereotype. Even the "villain" family, though we've yet to see a lot from them, seem more developed than average.

The only thing I dislike is that the author isn't so good at writing flashbacks. But I'm fairly particular when it comes to this so the average reader probably won't find them as flawed as... more>> I do. <<less
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Baabaablack rated it
February 24, 2018
Status: v3c3
I really, really like this series. It is a drama with a fantasy setting, with very personal stakes and it is written well.

One of the most notable themes of this series is the reversal of the standard gender roles and the growing acceptance of these chosen roles by this tribal community. It’s fun and something I can relate to.
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