Isuna Hasekura, author of the popular Spice and Wolf series, recently revealed the first volume in the beginning of a new economics-based light novel series under the title Powell and Printer.
While the new series does derive some influence from the former Spice and Wolf novels, Powell and Printer follows the adventures of a banker named Powell, rather than a merchant, and his travels with an unlikely printer companion. The setting occurs in a fantasy world where Powell helps to solve the various economic predicaments of the districts he visits by printing an absurd amount of currency to prop up their markets.
The translated synopsis from publisher ASCII Media Works gives a glimpse into what the series will entail.
Banker Jerome Powell lives a relatively quite life in his home district adjusting interest rates and monitoring the status of the local merchant guilds. However, one day a mysterious plague emerges throwing the market into turmoil. With interest rates already at near zero and trading values continuing to tumble, Powell soon finds himself at the edge of what looks like an unavoidable recession. One night, in the middle of a drunken stupor, Powell stumbles upon a strange device in the wheat fields capable of creating a seemingly unlimited amount of bank notes. Together with his new printing companion, Powell sets off on a mission to reverse the economic decline and show the world that stonks only go up.
The first volume of Powell and Printer in Japan has received praise from readers for its more down to earth portrayal of economics. Japanese fans online have affectionately given the nickname “Bururu-chan” to the printer – a reference to the sound a printer would make while operating at full speed.
An English version of the novel is currently in the works and planned to be available for reservation later this year. A special US exclusive “Too Big to Fail” edition will also be made available to certain buyers which promises to deliver future volumes regardless of whether the recipient is able to pay for them or not.