May Contain Spoilers
I actually read this in two chunks because I got distracted by life after Luffy’s battle with Don Krieg. After several volumes of frantic action, sometimes the lulls are a little too tame for my mood. The next story arc with Arlong’s pirate crew wasn’t my favorite, so I didn’t really have much incentive for blowing through this volume. Let’s see if my opinion of Nami’s backstory has changed in 15+ years since I first read it.
The fight between Luffy and Don Krieg is crazy. Not sure how Luffy managed to stay alive after all of the abuse from Krieg, but somehow, battered and bloody, Luffy survives long enough to take down the evil pirate captain. And almost drowns in the process, because he is flung into the sea after the fight. Eating that Gum Gum fruit really wasn’t the smartest thing he could have done, but without it, he wouldn’t have been able to repel some of the attacks he’s endured, so I guess it wasn’t completely terrible. With Sanji there to save him from drowning, Luffy survives to fight another day.
This volume sees the addition of another crew member, as Zeff pretty much kicks Sanji off the Baratie to go live his dream of seeing all of the oceans and all of the fish swimming in them. Sanji isn’t completely convinced he should leave the man who saved his life when he was a kid, but his desire to see more of the world finally convinces him to go with Luffy. Luffy couldn’t be more pleased, because now he will have delicious food to eat, since none of the rest of the crew can cook for a darn.
And then they are chasing after Nami, who has for some reason sailed to Arlong’s island. Arlong is a vicious pirate captain, and he makes Don Krieg look like a lightweight. Arlong and his crew are part fish, so they are incredibly strong and incredibly cruel. They destroy entire villages if just one person fails to pay their required tribute, and effectively keep the people under their control in a state of improvised terror. Arlong has no redeeming qualities that I can think of, so it will be a relief when Luffy sails into the picture and takes these villains down.
Grade: 3.75 stars
Review copy borrowed from my local library
About the book:
If Luffy wants to get out of a year’s worth of chore-boy duty on the oceangoing restaurant Baratie, he’s got to rid the seas of the evil Don Krieg. Unfortunately, Krieg’s armed to the teeth and aided by his “Demon Man,” Commander Gin. The battle takes a surprising turn as Krieg reveals his increasingly deadly military might! Meanwhile, Nami has sailed off on the Merry Go with treasure in tow, and she’s headed to Arlong Park, home of creepy Captain Arlong and his Fish-Man Pirates. What business does Nami have at Arlong Park, anyway? Something fishy is going on and Luffy’s crew just may be in over their heads!