"I was reincarnated as a noble young lady, but by the time my memories returned, I was already heading towards the bad ending. I broke off my engagement, and I am currently on the route where I am confined in a church. Where is my bright and colorful future now?"
A fast-paced novel featuring a strong but feminine MC who makes the story exciting without the elements of the doki-doki romance, magic potions or dragons. This is a story of a young woman thrown away by her fiancé, expelled from high society, learns from her mistakes, and makes the determination to stand on her own two feet, without yearning for a Mr Right to come along.
This is a story of Iris, who uses her knowledge from her past life to make her life succesful, as she no longer has the prospect of getting married.
Just to clear up possible confusions: Iris isn't transported to a life
in an otome game - rather, the moment the manga introduces her in her current life is the moment she remembers everything from her past life. A past life in which she had played the otome game that had revealed her downfall in her current life. That's the beginning of the story. Once you understand this, you'll also understand why it's not important to linger on the reincarnation part.
The writer did not dwell on the "why am I reincarnated into this life and why do I suddenly remember everything at this critical moment?" Why? Because I suppose the author would've to come up with a magic-circle-like explanation. Again, this isn't a magical story - this is about a girl making her own life work by using her brains, by working hard and by being focused on her goal, not on love.
The only lucky elements the writer has thrown in is her memory of her past life and her beautiful personality, which altogether makes the story great.
Compared to the manga, the novel is rather fast-paced. Political and business elements are very strong in this novel. I learned a lot, lol. Nevertheless, the excitement that arise from facing obstacles in these areas are, personally better that in Saiunkoku Monogatari. It makes the reader look forward to how Iris will accomplish things.
The story highlights the message the writer wants to bring over: Success is the result of using your brains, having the right priorities and hard work. Especially hard work.
The characters gets more well-rounded as the story progresses. I love the variety of characters, the good, the evil,... Also, the cast expands as the story progresses. I'm particularly thankful that the author does not limit the cast to only a handful to whom the readers could get attached to.
By the way, I love, love, looooove the strong element of loyalty in this story. Not in a romantic way, but in a friendship way. Albeit it's mostly master-servant relationships. Still, it's beautifully portrayed.
Iris Lana Armelia is a refreshing change from the stereotypes of female MCs in manga. She smart and emotionally strong, but not obnoxious. Compassionate and caring, but not dense. Feminine, but not whiny and in constant need for someone to hold her. Wealthy, but willing to work hard. All of this may make it seem she does things a bit too good, but hey, for a change, I don't mind following the story of such an emotionally superwoman. This is a capable female MC, and I love it! Yes, she is adored by many characters and rightly so! I find this way better than the typical moe MCs who are adored for being cute, looking cute and acting cute and sweet.
The dialogues are wonderfully entertaining. Since the novel has so many great ingredients to make a reader like me read and re-read the chapters over and over again, I only wished the author could dwell a bit more on certain situations, zoom in on the details and let the reader bathe a bit more in that part of the story.
In short, I love this novel. The strong elements of being independent and loyalty and a beautiful well-rounded cast is making this a great read, both in the novel and in manga.
I hope they'll make an anime of this, too.