TitleThe Beginning After the End Vol. 1 Author: TurtleMe (Story), Fuyuki23 (Art) Publisher: Yen Press, Tapas Language: English Format: Paperback Pages: 192 Genre: Fantasy, Action Publication Date: August 2, 2022
The Beginning After the End tells the story of a modern-day king who, on his deathbed, saw the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel. As he entered the light, he quickly realized that he had been reborn. At first, it was hinted that he was reborn into the past but he quickly realizes that he was reborn into another world where they have a similar substance to Ki in the form of Mana. Another gift is that he retained all of his memories and knowledge of when he was alive.
Now named Arthur, or Art for short, he sneaks into his parents’ study at night to read books. This is how he discovered the world and the existence of Magic. Knowing how to center Ki from his old world, he begins to meditate and at the ripe old age of three… he awakens his mana core, something that shouldn’t be possible until his teenage years. His father, Reynolds, believes he’s a prodigy and begins to combat train him! Yes… he’s combat training a three-year-old kid. However, that doesn’t seem like such a bad idea as in his previous life, Art was very knowledgeable and skilled in combat so he picks up on it rather quickly.
His father decides that he cannot teach him and feels that he would be better off being taught by someone who could hone his skills better. This means that they are going to be taking a trip to Xyrus City; however, they won’t be going alone. It just so happens that Reynolds has friends that are also going there known as the Twin Horns… despite there being five of them.
On the way there, we explore their personalities a bit until we get the end of the first volume when they are suddenly attacked by bandits!
Despite a starting cast of eight, the only one who feels like a main character is Art.
A former king, Art has been reborn in another world that is inferior to his own from a technological standpoint but that is due to Mana. After awakening his core, he aims to be the greatest mage this world has ever seen! Most of the dialogue in this book is from Art’s inner monologues. The comedy aspect comes into play when he thinks like an adult but is rendered useless by his infant body and his inability to even control simple things such as peeing and pooping. Still, Art brings a ton of personality and knows how to use his babyish looks to swoon his mother into doing things for him… mainly letting him study and read the books in the library.
By the time he is four, he ends up having a sparring match and remembers some of the moves he used to use from when he was a king. He passed off this sudden knowledge by saying he read it in a book to which everyone just stupidly accepts! Needless to say, this story is all about Art and no one else. So far, every other character that’s along for the ride, including his parents, are just side characters… which is fine because, in this instance, I feel as if that’s the right move to make.
Reynolds and Alice are Art’s father and mother, respectively. Reynolds is an idiot… plain and simple. He’s the typical male who likes showing off for his kids even though he’s not really good at much of anything while Alice is your typical doting mother (there’s even a chapter called “Doting Mother”) who tries her best to nurture Art’s thirst for knowledge all while still being a mom. Alice is a bit special though as she is one of the few people in the world who can use healing magic. I guess that comes in handy whenever Art gets a boo-boo.
As for the five “Twin” Fangs, we first have Adam Krensh who is a spear user. Adam is your typical red-haired sassy guy who is a bit full of himself but doesn’t seem to have too much of an ego. He’s just a little outgoing and that comes through when he offers to spar with Art. Yes, an adult wants to seriously spar with a four-year-old! I’m sure he’ll be used for some comedic spots every now and then but he seems harmless and pretty loyal to his friends.
Next up, we have Angela Rose who immediately smothers Art with her well-endowed chest. She specializes in wind magic. She seems caring enough but a little bit on the absent-minded side as she didn’t realize that her magnificent mammaries were crushing him… although I don’t think he minded all too much.
Then we have Durden Walker who seems to be the gentle giant and/or voice of reason for the group. This is followed by everyone’s new waifu, Jasmine Flamesworth who is good with daggers and is the silent and shy type that has to warm up to you.
Finally, we have Helen Shard who is a magic archer and another voice of reason type of girl. It would be nice to see more of a diverse set of personalities but we just were introduced to these characters so if they stick around, I’m sure they will end up being fleshed out a bit more as time goes on. Jasmine is already my favorite.
I first discovered this series on Tapas. After hearing from others how good the light novel was, I decided to check out the webcomic. Then, Yen Press licensed the comic for print and I knew that I had to pick it up! I had already read most of the first volume on Tapas so I was already familiar with a good portion of the book but the last two chapters were completely new to me.
The story is rather interesting and Art latches onto you almost immediately. All of the other characters still need some work but I’m sure that will all come in due time. Some have unique personalities while others just feel as if they are there but, again, with Art being the main focal point of the series, I don’t think that’s going to really matter all too much.
Next volume, we will be dealing with our bandit problem and I foresee us taking a little break to explore Xyrus City a bit before we get our feet wet with Art’s new teacher! This one has big potential and I can easily see it getting an anime adaptation! Let’s hope it does because I know I’d watch it!