Rating: 3/5 – Everything You’ve Never Wanted to Know About Centaur “naughty bits”.
Parents, you can call me out on the crude blurb above. I can take the hit, but I put it there for your benefit. Because when you see the cover of A Centaur’s Life in the bookstore, and you choose to ignore the Older Teen (16+) rating on the back of the book, you are going to have a TON of explaining to do to your child when you take this otherwise innocent-looking book home to them.
Kimihara Himeno is a girl in high school, but not just any ordinary girl – she’s a centaur (half-human/half-horse) and her best friends have horns, wings and tails. No, it’s not a furry’s dream come true – wait, it probably is – but beyond that it’s a slice of life book about growing up in high school and facing some of the same problems “normal” high school girls do. At least I’m guessing here.
The first chapter pretty much sets the tone for the rest of the book – asked out on a date by an angelperson (halo, feathery wings), Kimihara is self-conscious about accepting it, in case it leads to sex. Sex with someone of a different species. Sex with someone whose genitalia might be incompatible with her horse vagina (which she’s never seen because of her body structure). So of course she and her two friends get together and check out each other’s vaginas. Nothing is actually shown, but that’s the first chapter, people!
Fortunately, it gets better (or worse, depending on your particular kink) with more innocent stories about laziness, part-time jobs and other fairly straightforward predicaments that might befall any high school student. The real draw of this book, and how it ended up on my stack, is that creator Kei Murayama is an excellent world-builder. The realm inhabited by these creatures, fantastical though they may be, seems all-too-real. A lot of thought – perhaps too much thought (ever wonder how centaurs use the toilet? It’s in there!) – went into creating a thoroughly believable and yes, fascinating, world for Kimihara and her friends to live in.
I’m sticking around for the second volume, because I want to see and experience more of the strange world Murayama has built. I just don’t know if I’m truly prepared for it – it’s giving me lots of answers to questions I never even knew existed in my mind!
Reviewed by: Al Sparrow – firstname.lastname@example.org
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