Reread May 18, 2014.
Previous Volume reviews: 1.
Here's the next volume in the series and already things are getting interesting. We not only get to learn some of the politics playing behind the scenes in this stand off but we also learn of a terrible disaster in this war's past. We also see both sides of a discussion on just how far should the library protect it's patron's privacy.
Hikaru Tezuka: A high achiever and all but perfect student, he is the other new recruit to join the Task Force. While he can shoot better then Iku as well as do many others things better, he has issues with heights and dislikes Iku a great deal. However, events cause him to rethink his stance and he ends up asking her a very interesting question!
Asako Shibazaki: The beautiful roommate of Iku's, she seems to know everything worth knowing and ways of finding out the rest. She's firmly in the pro-Dojo camp and constantly tells Iku to treat him better. She seems to be able to play the complicated game of politics with ease while Iku is simple and direct. They are opposites and compliment each other well.
Plot and Thought:
Books are found to be missing from the stacks (they have closed stacks, which makes a lot of sense) and Shibazaki realizes they correspond to a list of banned books the temporary head librarian had brought to the Library's attention as ones the Education system wished withheld. This temporary librarian is a political appointment and Shibazaki knows he won't last long. His request denied, she grasps that he's trying to stop their circulation by pulling them, thus making the books unable to be found. She brings this to the Task Force's attention.
Meanwhile, Tezuka is still dealing with his negative feelings towards Iku. Both issues come to a head when a raid by the MBC on the Library itself gets interesting. From there we and Iku begin to see the politics behind events and we learn just where the police have been concerning the conflict between the two factions. It appears they may have not always practiced true neutrality with deadly consequences for library staff. Through all this knowledge though, Iku remains delightful hoes and simple in her dedication and beliefs. She expresses the outrage and feelings we and other characters feel but can't or won't show. We also finally end up seeing a different side of Tezuka.
I like how the reader is dropped into this slightly futuristic world with little explanation. Instead, we learn as the MC does, which ensures we aren't overloaded with too much information but instead feel as if we are a part of all this. One of the characters we learn more about is the head of this Library, Commander Inamine. He's a wonderful character and learning his tragic back story makes you appreciate him even more. He also is part of a scene that looks at just where the line can and perhaps should be when it comes to protecting a patron's privacy. Should the rule be bent for murder investigations? If so, where should that end? While only a short scene, maybe two pages at most, it is one of the most powerful moments of this volume.
On to Volume 3!