The Rising of the Shield Hero is a series of science fiction light novels by Japanese author Aneko Yusagi. The story follows the adventures of Naofumi Iwatani a Japanese student who gets pulled into a fantasy world, gets framed, and is now a pariah in this new world. His only hope is to defeat the “waves” with the other heroes, who he does not particularly like.
Naofumi purchases an egg from the same slave trader that sold him the demi-human Raphtalia and is soon surprised when it turns into an ostrich-type monster called a filolial. Naming her “Filo,” he defeats the Spear Hero in a race and sets out on an adventure. Filo soon transforms from a giant bird into a young girl and the three set out. During their travels, they encounter a giant evil plant, a chimera, and an undead dragon that will forever change the Shield Hero.
Volume 2 is a bit more grounded than the first and I like the further development of the relationship between the Shield Hero, Filo, and Raphtalia. I honestly did not miss the Bow and Sword Heroes and the Spear Hero’s presence was not disruptive. I think it brought the team to its fullest and I know more are on the way, but these early stories do a good job of setting the stage.
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