ARC Review: Yona of the Dawn, Vol. 11 by Mizuho Kusanagi

Yona of the Dawn, Vol. 11Yona of the Dawn, Vol. 11 by Mizuho Kusanagi
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Release date: April 3, 2018

Yona and her friends head out in search of a crop that can grow in barren land. On their travels, Hak becomes filled with grim determination while training Yona in swordsmanship. Yona notices that he’s acting differently and tries to cheer him up, but what Hak does next leaves her stunned!

In this volume, Yona’s group moves on with the next part of their journey – finding a way to raise the living standards of the poor parts of the kingdom. Yoon believes that finding a crop suitable to grow in the Fire Tribe lands would immensely help the people, so they head north towards their neighboring kingdom to find one. Meanwhile, we get a glimpse of Soo-won and Hak’s relationship when they were younger, in the first two chapters.

The story circles back to Yona, Soo-won and Hak’s relationship when they were kids, showing us a glimpse of how the times used to be. A small story about the time when the three of them snuck out of the palace and Yona gets kidnapped, shows how resourceful and charming Soo-won was even at 9 years of age, and how Hak admired him for it. At the same time, Soo-won looked up to Hak for his protective big brother attitude (even though they are the same age), and both of them adored Yona (who was 6 at the time). Their caring relationship is heartbreaking when you think Soo-won must have realized early in his life how life was outside the palace, and you can imagine he was already going to be heading down his path if not yet decided how he would go about it. And now, Hak’s complicated emotions about that is also sad – he doesn’t exactly want to hurt Soo-won but he would if it were for her sake.

On the other side, in the current time, Hak and Yona’s relationship is growing in a different direction, with him hinting at feelings for her, and she getting flustered around him. While they are in the village of the Kei kingdom, they stop and pose as traveling performers, and Yona notices how much attention Hak gets. (Jae-ha actually teases her about it, and comically feels sorry for Hak) There is a little comedy in how her band of dragons are all popular among the ladies, with the plot basically hinting at how she is surrounded by handsome guys. Yoon charms a villager into showing him the crop they survive on, and starts thinking about how he can take back some for his village.

This story arc is a bit slow-paced because we have our heroes taking a break in a village, but character-wise a lot progresses in this volume.

Received an advance reader copy in exchange for a fair review from Viz Media LLC, via Edelweiss.

Previous books

Yona of the Dawn, Vol. 1 Yona of the Dawn, Vol. 2 Yona of the Dawn, Vol. 3 Yona of the Dawn, Vol. 4 Yona of the Dawn, Vol. 5 Yona of the Dawn, Vol. 6 Yona of the Dawn, Vol. 7 Yona of the Dawn, Vol. 8 Yona of the Dawn, Vol. 9 Yona of the Dawn, Vol. 10

View all my reviews

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