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Light Novel Review - Heavy Object Volume 2

After the initial success of the first volume of Heavy Object, author Kazuma Kamachi followed up with a second volume, entitled 'An Audition War.' Quenser and Heivia face greater and more deadly challenges, supporting characters like Froleytia are fleshed out in greater detail, and for the first time, elements within the Legitimacy Kingdom are seen as threats to the protagonists as grave as enemies from other world powers.

Cover Art
Cover Art ASCII Media Works

PROS:

  • Visceral. The author's stated goal for this series was to convey a sense of exhilaration from facing and defeating a colossal enemy. By and large, this is very successful. Quenser and Heivia continue to accomplish the unthinkable in ways that (with only a little suspension of disbelief) remain plausible.
  • All quiet on the Northern Front. In this installment is a scene that, while totally unrelated to anything in the story before or after, forever leaves a mark on the reader as one of the more memorable scenes from the series. The Penguin Dance, in which both sides of a firefight stop fighting long enough for an adorable group of flightless birds to wander past.
  • The Ball and Chain. While Quenser's motivations have always been easy to figure out, Heivia remained a bit of an enigma, until in Volume 2, it is explained why he is working like a dog to make a name for himself. He wants to gain control of his noble house, so that he can marry his fiancee, a girl from a rival family. The star crossed love gives the otherwise hapless Heivia Winchell a bit of a sympathetic perspective.
  • Taking One For The Team. Froleytia is revealed to be a tragic Nobility figure as well, and in a rare moment of empathy, Quenser 'helps' her escape some of her problems. In a way that only Quenser would think constructive. I'm not going to lie, it's pretty funny.

CONS:

  • TMI. As mentioned in the review of the first volume, the 'Two Idiots,' as Froleytia, calls them, are not your average heroic protagonists. In this installment however, we first learn of Quenser's armpit fetish. I didn't need to know.
  • Specialization is for Insects. A recurring theme in the series is the debate about specialized vs general purpose Objects. This is the first book, however, where the enemy Objects start to become really very over specialized. The Break Carrier is an Object built around a massive mass driver (forgive the ironic repetition), and looks incredibly ponderous, even for an Object.