Cover Image: The King's Beast, Vol. 1

The King's Beast, Vol. 1

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Member Reviews

Toma's The King's Beast follows Rangetsu, an ajin assigned to protect Prince Tenyou as a 'beast-servant'. But there's more to Rangetsu than meets the eye. 

This was the first manga by Rei Toma I've had the pleasure to read. The artwork was amazing! The storyline was surprisingly deep too, touching on topics of slavery and discrimination, as well as revenge. The life of ajin is brutal and unforgiving. Males must serve as bodyguards or cannon fodder. Females of a certain age are forced to be sex slaves. Once they grow too old to be desirable, they are used for menial labour. Ajin are a suppressed people, treated as beyond inferior, despite being stronger than humans, and possibly endowed with a unique magical talent. But Tenyou doesn't see them the same as everyone else. He cares for ajin well-being, unlike many of his fellow palace dwellers. The perfect person to push for greater ajin equality if he can become king.

Great series start! Recommended for those who love anime and manga!

****Many thanks to Netgalley and VIZ Media for providing an egalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.
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This volume is an engaging start to a new series. While it's laying the foundation for the series to come, it still has an absorbing plot and characters that you need to know what happens to. It helps that the main character is pretending to be a man in order to seek revenge and ends up working with a very attractive man. I can't wait to see where this series goes.
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Great first book.  Story really drew me in.  It is not the most original but why deviate when it isn't broken?  The characters are likeable.  It is beautifully drawn.  Patrons and librarians would love to read this and finish it. 
Great pick!
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A fun spin on the classic "I have to disguise myself as a boy because ____" trope. This first volume sets up a mystery and has some slight signs of character growth, both of which are nice, but I'll admit I stuck around largely for the absolutely gorgeous art. Recommended for fans of gender-bending characters, palace intrigue, or fantasy shoujo/seinen manga.
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An exciting start to a new series. I am a fan of the creators other works so I was thrilled to get my hands on this volume. The artwork is gorgeous and I really like the character designs. I can already tell that this story will be popular with the shojo manga crowd.
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I really enjoyed the pacing of this manga because we got a good amount of backstory for Rangetsu and her brother while still having that uncertainty of what will happen. I am eager to find out what happens in volume 2 and so on. So far I’m loving the story and beautiful aet.
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I loved the book The King's Beast.  I thought it was a great combination of action and story telling.  I love the twist with the characters. I can not wait to find out how the characters and story develop.
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The King's Beast is a fantasy manga that explores an interesting world where both humans and Ajins (humans who have animal/beast like characteristics) exist. In this world humans are at the top and Ajins are treated poorly and are taken advantaged of by the humans. Ajins who show that they have special abilities are sought after so that they can become servants for the palace.  The main character an Ajin, conceals her identity as a woman so that she can infiltrate the palace to find and get revenge on the person who killed her brother. However, once she reaches the palace she quickly learns that the person who she thought was her enemy and responsible for her twin brother's death is innocent and that someone else in the palace killed her brother. 

The story is really interesting and I am already rooting for the main character! The world building is really good as are they illustrations. I would definitley recommend this manga for teens and above who enjoy fantasy.
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Good Shojo spinoff of Arcana. It is not necessary to read Arcana series to enjoy this Manga, although it does pique the reader interest in the other story. Great themes of overcoming differences, with the typical shojo angst that makes the genre enjoyable for many readers.
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I really enjoyed The King's Beast Vol. 1 and am very excited to delve in vol. 2. I have recently started reading more Manga and this was a really good one to start with. I loved how easy it was to read and that I didn't have to have read Dawn of the Arcana to understand what was going on.
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I am very interested in this world and the lore with the Beast-men. I also love the murder mystery vibes.
The fourth Prince will kill me, I love him, and if he isn't good, I will be so SAD!
So many mangas have given me trust issues!
A fantasy world with magic and mystery I highly recommend!
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It’s hard to say what I think of this book.  I found it interesting and entertaining, but with just one volume the story is not yet fully developed.  I was really intrigued with one sibling passing themselves off as another, another who is a warrior.  Plus the way the monarchy works is still confounding.  But I did like it well enough to pick up book 2 so that says something.
#ReadingGraphics - identifies differently
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This book was absolutely fantastic. I've already added it to our library collection and will recommend it to students.
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This book had some really beautiful and captivating art, but the story didn't hold my interest as I thought it might. I think maybe this is because it was just one volume and I am used to consuming more than one volume of manga at a time so I get more info. It is hard to read books as they slowly come out sometimes. I am a sucker for the girl disguises herself as a man to plot revenge trope...even more so if said girl in disguise falls in love and has to try to not get caught/discovered. Rangetsu's past is heartbreaking. In a world where Aijin are seen as lower class, there wasn't much hope for her twin brother Sogetsu when he was forcefully taken and conscripted to the kings staff. Rangetsu wants to work her way up and get revenge on those who wronged her brother and left her alone in this cruel world...will she succeed?
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Just this month, another would-be assassin infiltrated an imperial court in the first volume of a new VIZ manga, The King’s Beast by Rei Toma (better known for Dawn of the Arcana). The inequality of this world is clearer than the slow reveal in Raybearer: here, Ajin, who are magical humanoids with animal characteristics, are second class citizens. Despite their powerful gifts, they’re controlled and contained by the more populous humans. Boy Ajin who exhibit gifts may be selected to become servants to the imperials. When Rangetsu’s twin brother, Sogetsu, is chosen to become the fourth prince’s beast servant, Rangetsu is initially relieved. He’ll be safe, she thinks. He won’t have to face the oppression that the rest of the Ajin see. (Rangetsu herself is destined to hold a low-class job, if she’s not forced to become a prostitute.)

But there’s no safety in the palace. When Sogetsu is killed, supposedly by the fourth prince himself, Rangetsu dedicates herself to becoming the most dangerous killer an Ajin can be. She has to be exemplary (and disguise herself as a boy) to become the beast servant to the fourth prince. It’s the only way she’ll ever be able to kill him and get her revenge. But as soon as she earns her position, she begins to realize that Prince Tenyou isn’t the murderer—and in fact, Tenyou wanted to seek justice for Sogetsu himself. The two form an uneasy partnership to get to the bottom of the murder, even if it means unraveling the imperial court.

Rei Toma lets the art tell the story in many places, and the linework is gorgeous, with plenty of action sequences and palpable tension in the placement of characters. While lacking the depth of a longer work (readers are likely to get the firmer world building and character development through the next few volumes), this is a great hook for what looks to be a mystery-fantasy-action story, with some commentary on gender roles and likely a future romance. (Rangetsu’s secret girlhood isn’t likely to stay secret over the course of the series.) Tenyou’s soft heart is a perfect foil for a cold-hearted assassin who’s given up caring about anyone after her brother’s death, and I hope that the two will become the team the story promises in this first volume. (The right to left format of the book is another plus for manga fans, and the fact that 2021 has the first four volumes schedule means the wait to the deeper story won’t be long.)

For readers who love unraveling court intrigue alongside characters seeking to right the wrongs of their worlds, both of these are well worth the read.
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Rei Toma's work is lovely and oh so dark. Toma does not shy away from difficult subjects like sex work, slavery, class systems etc. I was impressed by The King's Beast, such an amazing story born of revenge and wanting to be free. The political intrigue reminds me of Requiem of the Rose King, but in King's Beast no one is quite what they show themselves to be. I can see this as an up and coming new series, it's going to be a darker one but what a ride this series will be.
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Squee! This has all the good stuff in it- a young beastkin woman pretending to be a boy to avenge her brother's death, some enemies-to-lovers-ish sparks, a handsome young prince in the Imperial court, with said court full of political intrigue, a harsh world where the Ajin, a beastkin race that are treated like second-class citizens, forced to become slaves to the royals, to give us some ugliness to want to see taken down, and gorgeous, be-still-my-beating-heart artwork! The story flows along nicely, teasing out hints of undercurrents of treachery and deceit. Volume 2, here I come!

#TheKingsBeastVol1 #NetGalley
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Ajin is the people who possessed the power and characteristics of beasts. In this kingdom, male Ajin is forced to serve humans in the military while the female Ajin serves in the brothels. If an Ajin boy shows signs of special abilities, they are allocated to serve in the imperial palace as beast servants to protect their royal masters, to be kept or discarded depending on their masters. Rangetsu’s twin brother has shown signs of extraordinary ability and forced to separate from his sister, where he was soon fell into a brutal death in a royal household. Understanding the state of the world, Rangetsu is filled with despair and chose to disguise herself as a man to find her way into the palace to seek vengeance for her brother’s death.

However, Rangetsu’s royal master, Prince Tenyou, isn’t what she had expected him to be, and she soon learns the dark side of politics. Does she have the chance of finding out her brother’s killer, or will she join her brother in the afterlife before reaching her objective?
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I had the pleasure of reading an excerpt of ”The King's Beast, Vol. 1”, by Rei Toma. It is a gripping fast paced graphic novel that is sure to engage manga readers. While it is not a book I would stock directly in the store due to space constraints, it is one that I would be prepared to recommend and hand sell to customers specifically looking for a good graphic novel of this variety.
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Ajin are basically beastlike humans who are slaves in this world. If they are gifted with powers they go on to better things or at least better then the other option but they work for royalty as guards. Rangetsu's twin brother had powers and was taken to prince Tenyou and died shortly after. Now she's working her way up the ranks as a man to be by Tenyou's side and assassinate him but finds there is more to it. 

This was definitely and interesting start of a series. I loved the characters and getting an idea of what is going on. I love the mystery aspect of now we gotta figure out who might be behind the death of Rangetsu's brother and the mystery person who keeps coming at her. There was a couple attempted at the ajins life but its unclear why her instead of the prince shes protecting. I'm curious to see what's next.
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