Volume 2 of That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime picks up shortly after Volume 1 ended. For anyone watching the anime, episodes 9 – 15 cover Volume 2. Things have calmed down a bit since the battle at end of Volume 1. In the meantime, Rimuru and the villagers have continued to expand their home. Until, of course, something bad happens. A small skirmish marks the prelude to war, with Rimuru and allies both new and old preparing for a confrontation against a massive army consuming everything in its path.
The world-building is as substantial in this Volume as the first one. We start to see more of the Forest of Jura as well as neighboring lands. This involves nearby human nations as well as monster communities. The concept of naming monsters is really hammered home here, more so than in the first book. Names increase a monster’s magic, which in turn improves them physically. It is a literally life-changing phenomenon that only a select few are normally granted. Rimuru naming every friendly monster he comes across builds instant loyalty and fosters the growth of their town.
Naming plays a big part in this book’s characterization, something else heavy in the story. Volume 2 introduces a lot of characters who become major players for the rest of the series. From the ogres on the front cover to the races involved in the war and shadowy villains lurking behind the scenes. Monsters normally do not get along but against this new threat and under Rimuru’s flag, things are changing. While Rimuru views himself as a normal guy, he puts himself in a position of leadership as his actions begin to change the world for the better.
Compared to Western novels, That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime has the feel of a YA book. The age rating on the back says 14+ and that is pretty accurate. There are some darker themes in this second book, but nothing horribly descriptive. Comparatively, it is about on par with a Rick Riordan book. While by no means a great work of literature, these books are just fun. Nothing in here comes across as flawless or perfect, but the story and characters are just fun. This is by far one of the better light novel series out there and its light-hearted nature makes it a good choice for people just getting started on the isekai genre.