One Piece Novel Ace Vol.1, the review: the spin-off series on Portuguese D. Ace

One Piece Novel Ace Vol.1, the review: the spin-off series on Portuguese D. Ace
Anime, manga, movies, video games and novels. The world of One Piece includes an unlimited number of productions involving all the most important mediums of popular culture. The latest to be added to this list is One Piece Novel Ace, a new spin-off series of short prose stories dedicated to one of the most beloved characters in the series, Portuguese D. Ace. In Italy this new novel arrives thanks to Edizioni Star Comics and tells the most hidden and unknown past of Ace, between when he left his brother Luffy to venture into the sea and the moment he met the famous Whitebeard. The first volume was released on November 4th and here is our review.

One Piece Novel Ace: the meeting between Deuce and Portuguese D. Ace

The first volume of this series spin-off, created by Sho Hinata under the supervision of Eiichiro Oda, takes the name of The Birth of the Pirates of Spades and is set on the island of Sixis lost in the middle of the sea and which cannot be abandoned in any way. of the strong currents that characterize the waters that surround it. A totally lonely and decidedly demoralized boy lives on this island, or at least that's what he believes before meeting Portuguese D. Ace and discovering that he too is stuck on that same island.

A strong friendship will be born between the two that Deuce, the protagonist of the story whose name is given by Ace, wants to describe in the form of a personal diary. Coexistence is anything but simple and the two will have to learn to get to know each other and get closer, as well as defend themselves since they are the only two inhabitants of an island scattered in the middle of nowhere. In short, they are in the same boat and will have to make sure to escape. They succeed by starting the Ace crew, as well as the Pirates of Spades, but their adventure in the New World and in the Grand Line will be anything but simple. At his heels there will be not only the Navy, but also an unexpected person: Ace's father, Gol D. Roger.

Between unpublished tales and curiosities about the birth of the Pirates of Spades

This series begins with a first volume that not only tells an unknown side of Ace through the words of the narrator Deuce, but also a part of the story not present in the canonical manga. The narrative similar to a personal diary gives a sort of unexpected realism especially when Deuce, after describing himself and his most intimate desires regarding the desire to venture to the open sea in order to be able to put his passion as a writer into practice, decides to put a magnifying glass on Ace and their friendship.

In the manga we have seen Ace as a very generous person, sincere, cheerful, but just as fearful due to his great strength given by his Mera Mera no Mi. It is precisely discovering the way in which he obtains the powers of the Foco Foco fruit that makes this first volume of One Piece Novel Ace really interesting and curious. This aspect mainly concerns the first part of the volume as the second part mainly tells the Pirates of Spades and their adventure on the Sabody Islands before entering the New World.

Here it is impossible not to notice the similarities between Ace and the brother Luffy. The metanarrative continues showing us a good-hearted but authoritative captain and allows us to get to know some members of the ramshackle crew and their most original peculiarities. Among the most important antagonists stands the Ensign Isuka who tries to continually capture Ace, but who in the end turns out to be more similar than they themselves imagine.

The first volume of One Piece Novel Ace consists of a prologue and three chapters, for a total of 112 pages that are enriched by some tables regarding the new characters introduced in the novel by Oda so as to physically define them within the story itself so as to imagine them as characters from the manga or anime. The language used for the narration is very simple and the reading flows quite easily.

It is a work that is aimed mainly at fans of the world of One Piece, but its simple and not very articulated narration can be also appreciated by those who approach the story for the first time and will be able to get to know the character of Ace better since in the manga he is only partially described through flashbacks. The story is well-paced and light-hearted especially in the second part since the first is slow for obvious reasons related to the description of the characters and their initial cognitive embarrassment.

The editorial point of view

From an editorial point of view, Edizioni Star Comics has managed to create a small volume that is as simple as it is aesthetically pleasing and pleasant to the touch. The cover features laminated and glossy inserts as well as comfortable flaps that can be used as a bookmark. The paper has an excellent weight and gives a good rough and high quality feedback to the touch. The translation and adaptation carried out respectively by Salvatore Corallo and Anna Giuliani are also valuable, but the most interesting part are certainly the Extras inserted at the end of the volume: the sketches of the characters present in the story and some glimpses coming directly from the manga are really goodies unquestionably valuable.


In conclusion, the first volume of One Piece Novel Ace is an excellent introductory chapter where even newbies, through short but important explanations, can learn about the world in which the events and the protagonists develop. Ace, Deuce and the Pirates of Spades are introduced, but also the main antagonists of the ramshackle gang with some goodies that will certainly be explored in later volumes such as the encounter with Whitebeard. Reading is certainly not compulsory as it is a prequel spin-off, but net of a slower first part, it offers hours of entertainment and amusement that are not indifferent.

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