Ascendance of a Bookworm Episode 22

Ascendance of a Bookworm Episode 22

Wilma and Holy Scriptures for Kids

Ascendance of a Bookworm episode 22 didn’t cover quite as much interesting content as the previous episode did. However, the series did reach an important milestone in Myne’s quest to create books: Her very first book has been completed.

But the first book Myne completes isn’t a real book, it’s a picture book made for her upcoming baby sibling. And from what we’ve seen, it’s not even a picture book that tells a story. It’s literally just a book with basic shapes in it because according to Myne, babies like solid shapes.

The first real book Myne is currently working on is a children’s version of the scriptures. And while I don’t think that Myne should be promoting the teachings of the corrupt church like that, this choice makes a lot of sense.

Wilma's art printed using a wooden block from the anime series Ascendance of a Bookworm season 2
Wilma’s art printed using a wooden block

Originally Myne planned for the story of the three little pigs to be her first real book. However, after reading a rough draft of the book to some of the children in the orphanage, she learned that neither pigs nor wolves exist in this world. And since they don’t exist, it’s difficult for the children to really understand the story.

Now, I think this story still could have worked. After all, she could just treat pigs and wolves like fantastical creatures like dragons are in our world. Or, she simply could have swapped them out for animals that do exist and fill the same roles in this world.

But the choice of turning the scriptures into a children’s’ book makes more sense. The church can’t be mad at her because she’s promoting their content, the story should already be familiar to the children, and it’s teaching the children how to read.

Mass Production

There are two major issues with Myne choosing to create a children’s version of the holy scriptures as her first real book. The first is the issue of mass production and the second is the issue of cost. These issues are tied to one another, but I’m counting them separately because they each need to be considered for different reasons.

Mass producing books is not an easy feat in this world. We can assume that it’s never been done before, and that means Myne needs to start with the most basic of mass production technology. In the end she settles on wooden engravings printed onto paper.

However, even though Myne has settled on a printing technology to use, this is still a pretty slow method of mass production that requires a lot of manpower. If she wants to ramp up production to a larger scale, she’ll definitely need a more automated solution.

Chibi Myne wishing she had a photo copier from the anime series Ascendance of a Bookworm season 2
Chibi Myne wishing she had a photo copier

Cost is probably the bigger issue here, though. With time and manpower, mass production can be achieved. But the cost of mass-producing books won’t be paid off so easily. As Benno reminds Myne, the materials needed to produce books, such as ink, are very expensive.

This issue of cost could also either be made better or worse due to Myne’s decision to print the scriptures as her first real book. On one hand, it’s possible that the church itself will cover the cost of her book. They may do this because it’s beneficial for them to have the scriptures spread and also for the populace to know how to read — so they can read the real scriptures.

But if the church doesn’t cover the cost, then is anyone else really going to want to buy Myne’s book? Everyone outside of the church hates the church, so I’m not convinced they will.

Myne’s First Book

As mentioned earlier, Myne’s first book is a picture book created for her soon-to-be baby sibling. This book isn’t very impressive, especially when compared to the mass-produced book she’s working on, but it still represents two years of Myne’s hard work.

That may seem like a long time to make a single picture book, but we need to remember that she’s already laid the groundwork for mass-producing real books as well. She knows where and how to get all the materials she needs, she has a workshop, and she has the financial backing of both a merchant company and the church.

Also, even if Myne lost the favor of the church, which I think is a very real possibility, she isn’t reliant on the church anymore. Sure, the church provides her and her “workers” with food and shelter, but she’s already successful enough to acquire those things on her own.

Myne holding her first completed book from the anime series Ascendance of a Bookworm season 2
Myne holding her first completed book

And, if we take this loss of the church’s favor to the extreme and say that the church takes over her workshop, that still wouldn’t set her back too far. I don’t know if the church could even do that, but it seems to have a lot of legal authority, so it’s a real possibility.

The issue for the church if they do this is that the workshop itself, and even the workers within it, aren’t Myne’s moneymaker. Everything Myne needs to set up a new bookmaking operation is in her head.

But what if the church arrests Myne? If she’s in prison, her ideas don’t matter, right? Wrong. Myne’s ideas and inventions are such a big cash cow for the Gilberta Company and the merchant’s guild that they would undoubtedly obtain her freedom at any expense.

Conclusion

What did you think of Ascendance of a Bookworm episode 8? Do you think Myne’s decision to make a children’s version of the scriptures was the right one? And how do you think she’s going to cover the cost of producing these books? Let me know your thoughts in the comments.

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My review of the next episode is available here.

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