Wednesday, March 08, 2023

Villains Are Destined to Die vol 1 by Gwon Gyeoeul & SUOL: review

5/5 stars on Goodreads

Villains Are Destined to Die by Gwon Gyeoeul & SUOL

Villains Are Destined to Die is a transmigration manga where the MC is transported to the game she’s been playing. In the easy mode, she was the heroine winning over the affections of all the men around her. In the hard mode, as Penelope, she dies over and over again, and everyone hates her. Before the player manages to crack the hard mode, she finds herself as Penelope, desperately trying to survive.

This was an excellent story. At first, I was leery of a game where the goal was to win male characters’ affection, but the story turned out to be much darker than these light novels usually are. There was also greater integration between the MC’s backstory and current life than is usual in transmigration stories. I haven’t read the books by Gwon Gyeoeul the manga is based on, but I have a notion the MC deals with her own trauma as the story progresses.

Both Penelope and the person playing her are orphans brought into a rich family, with two older brothers that hate her and a cold, distant father. In her real life, she’d just escaped to an independent life at the university, and now she has to live similar life in a game. The game controls are visible, showing her progress. The only thing missing is the reset button, which she discovers to her horror when she tries to die to get a do-over.

In the first volume, Penelope makes some progress in settling into her new life. It ends with her gaining some affection from four of the five male leads, but she’s a long way from reaching 100%. The fifth guy will show up in the next volume. I’ll be interested in reading more.

The illustrations by SUOL were full colour and beautiful, with the past life depicted in black and white. They were enjoyable to look at and added greatly to the reading experience. Translation was very good.

I received a free copy from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

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