When some mysterious visitors from another world suddenly appeared in his garden, Rakan learned that he possesses the valuable skills of a sanome—someone with the ability to make plants grow—and that he originally came from the other world himself. After spending several volumes getting to know his houseguests, Rakan has decided to return with them to their blighted and desolate point of origin. There, he’s mistaken for the prince, his older brother, by bandits who aim to capture him.
The plot of Silver Diamond moves at a leisurely pace—most of this volume involves the group of bandits and their hopelessness—but is still a pleasure to read because the characters are so great. They’re warm and funny and easy to root for. When Rakan steps up at the end of the volume and declares his intention to make the world green again, one is actually proud of him. He seems to be on the verge of collecting a motley group of followers, and the parallels with my favorite manga, Basara, in which a kind-hearted revolutionary leader strives to make a withered world bloom again, are not lost on me.
One other nice tidbit is that the translation retains the Japanese name order of the characters, which means that when Rakan’s protectors finally start addressing each other by their first names, the moment retains its proper significance. Though the packaging—now both floppier and thinner—may bear signs of cost-cutting measures, the material within is as good as ever.
Review originally published at Manga Recon.