REVIEW: ‘Queen’s Quality,’ Volume 10

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Queens Quality Volume 10

Queen’s Quality, the sequel to QQ Sweeper, is a fantasy shojo series with action and romance from mangaka Kyousuke Motomi. Queen’s Quality Volume 10 is published by VIZ Media’s imprint Shojo Beat, adapted in English by Ysabet Reinhardt McFarlane, with translation by JN Productions, and touch-up art and lettering by Rina Mapa. Last volume, we saw the completion of the Byakko arc which showcased Fumi finally becoming one with the White Queen’s power and solidifying her relationship with Kyutaro.

Now, in Queen’s Quality Volume 10, Fumi and Kyutaro are finally on the same page emotionally and it’s paired with a lot of kisses. But their happiness in their new relationship is hiding the Snake that is lying dormant in Kyutaro, waiting to awaken and take him over. This volume covers four chapters, 45 through 48, and gets a lot done for only that small amount. For the most part, the first half of this volume feels slightly like filler, showcasing the happiness that the two characters have achieved, but there is an uneasiness that runs through the volume as an undercurrent. While everyone around them knows the potential danger that Kyutaro is in, the two love birds are more concerned with how many times is too many to kiss in a day.

When the Seiryu comes to confront the Horikita house, they realize that Kyutaro isn’t the only one who may suffer from the Snake and as it begins to awaken in him, the final chapter in Queen’s Quality Volume 10 offers up intimacy and confrontation. It’s the final chapter in this volume that makes it a strong continuation of the story, setting up the next arc in the series and putting Fumi in a position to be the one in power and not the one in danger of being consumed by it.

While I have been in love with Motomi’s series, including QQ Sweeper, Queen’s Quality Volume 10 takes my investment in the story to a whole new level. Now, pulling the lovey-dovey rug out from under me and thrusting our leads into trauma instead of just letting them be happy is frustrating but expected in shojo manga. That said, the switch from Kyutaro being the one to rescue the one he loves to Fumi being in that position is well-done. And more importantly, Fumi understands her role in balancing Kyutaro to an extent that she never questions her power nor does she allow the Snake to take advantage of her.

Finally, the dreamy quality of Motomi’s art is wonderful and captures the young couple’s happiness. The light line work is what highlights the switch in tone when the Snake begins to emerge and when the setting switches to something more dangerous. The ability to visually represent tonal shifts is just as important as doing so in the dialogue and Motomi executes it extremely well.

Overall, Queen’s Quality Volume 10 is a wonderful start to a new arc that offers some romantic downtime to appreciate the relationship that nine volumes built up to. But the strongest element to this volume is Fumi’s power and competence being on full display.

Queen’s Quality Volume 10 is available from booksellers now.

Queen's Quality Volume 10
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TL;DR

Overall, Queen’s Quality Volume 10 is a wonderful start to a new arc that offers some romantic downtime to appreciate the relationship that nine volumes built up to. But the strongest element to this volume is Fumi’s power and competence being on full display.