I’m back with another book review, and this time I’m reviewing “Campfire Cooking In Another World With My Absurd Skill, Volume 1!” My understanding is that Agakishi K created this manga adaptation based on the original work by Ren Eguchi. Masa is also credited as the character designer, as well.
I also want to clarify now that I am reviewing the manga version of this book, not the light novel, because I heard about the manga series first. I may consider switching to reading the light novel version of this series later on. This is because the light novel has more volumes out, and therefore more of the story is already covered than what the manga has done so far.
Here’s a quick summary so we know what it’s about:
“Mukouda Tsuyoshi was nothing special in modern Japan, so when he was summoned to a world of swordplay and sorcery, he thought he was ready for the adventure of a lifetime. Too bad the kingdom that summoned him only got him by mistake! Not only was he not one of the three summoned heroes, but his stats were laughable compared to theirs. On top of that, there’s something really sketchy about this kingdom… “Ah, these people are the kind to try and use the Hero,” he realized, and immediately left to make his own way in this other world.
The only thing Mukouda can rely on is his unique skill: the “Online Supermarket,” a skill that allows him to buy modern goods in a fantasy world. It’s useless for combat, but if he plays his cards right, he could lead a comfortable life, maybe? At least, that’s what Mukouda thinks, but it turns out modern food bought with this skill has some absurd effects! What happens when Mukouda introduces ridiculously tasty modern cooking to a fantasy world like this? He gets some ridiculous repeat customers begging for more…!”
Plot Development: 4 out of 5 stars
This is not the first time I’ve read an isekai style of manga or novel. However, the fact that Mukouda has the power of online shopping to bring modern tools to a fantasy world comes with hilarious results. I loved seeing how it easily nabbed him an extremely powerful beast as a familar, as well as netting him easy money as needed.
However, I also find it interesting that Mukouda genuinely just wants to live a decent life for himself. He wants to take things slow and not be forced to serve a kingdom and so on. This makes a lot of sense considering his past life before ending up in the new fantasy world. It’s especially shown with how wary he was with how sketchy things seem at this particular world’s kingdom. Will the people who intially summoned him will try to get hiim back, or let him go on his merry way?
Worldbuilding Development: 4 out of 5 stars
I like how the art style of characters differs between the characters of the fantasy world (giving them a more typical Western/European feel) compared to Mukouda and the rest of the main cast. It helps with showing differences between characters. But, it also shows how different the fantasy world characters are compared to Mukouda and his companions.
The art style also showed clear differences between the fantasy world’s functions and the modern world functions Mukouda can access with his online shopping skill. I thought it was smart on the artist to do such a thing so it made such distinctions easier to see.
I also thought the worldbuilding as a whole was well-developed. Howver, I have questions about how corrupt and/or evil the kingdom Mukouda ran away from is. Another question I have is the concept of familiars. Legendary beasts becoming familiars is established to be quite uncommon. However, it makes me wonder if Mukouda will encounter other legendary beasts that might befriend him, if not act as familiars. I think that would be a fun sideplot to explore in the worldbuilding of the story.
Character Development: 4 out of 5 stars
Mukouda is a hilarious protagonist. He straight-out refuses to be a hero and immediately wants to pave his own path…but it also results in him trying to figure out what the heck he wants to do since he’s straight-up refused this call. I will give him props for figuring out how he can use his current skills to help his own livelihood. He was also wise to get away from the kingdom as fast as he can. This way, he can’t be forced to serve them after his initial refusal. He’s smart, though he’ll have to learn to adapt to the changes and expectations he has waiting on him.
Fel is also a really funny familiar. The way Fel switches between desiring more food and being caring and almost mentor-like to Mukouda is hilarious to read. I’m interested to see how Mukouda and Fel bond with the contract set between each other now in future books.
The party members that Mukouda first traveled with, going out of the kingdom in this story, were also fun to read. I hope they have a chance to return in future books. Perhaps they reunite with Mukouda or end up teaming up with him. This is possible since Mukouda is registered at both the Merchants’ guild and the Adventurers’ guild.
Overall, I’m rating this book 4 out of 5 stars!
This is a strong start to the series, and I look forwward to reading more of Mukouda’s adventures!
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