The initial introduction to the characters is pretty funny and entertaining, especially Grace's overreactions. That said, the entire premise that Zero is scary-looking is undercut by the fact that fe isn't very scary-looking. In fact, fe's somewhat attractive, if I do say so myself. At least as attractive as this artist seems capable of drawing people, which isn't all that much. Amaris and Lilly aren't the worst characters or anything, but I also don't really feel that they're necessary. And even Grace doesn't seem to add much to the story once fe switches from being someone who quakes in fear at the sight of Zero to being someone who glares in jealousy at the sight of other girls around fem. In other words, the romance and harem aspects of the story don't really do anything for me. I don't really have any complaints about Zero. I've enjoyed fem so far.
Grace's quest to subjugate the lizardmen (ch. 9-13) is uninteresting and I'm not sure whether it's even necessary in the plot. The currently ongoing quest to meet the four Great Spirits started out interesting, but it's gotten less so. I think part of it is that it's just rushing from one spirit to the next, with each giving some partial cryptic answers about the nature of the spirits and what's going on with the Spirit Liberation Troops and Zero femself, but with no explanation as to why the first spirit can't just give the answers to all the questions. There's the semblance of an explanation given--that they want fem to gather all the evidence femself and then come to feir own unbiased opinion about things, so they don't want to unduly influence fem. But that's clearly bullshit, since the second and third Great Spirits provide additional information. So why couldn't the first spirit have just provided all that information? Well, obviously, the author just wanted to spread out the info drops so that we the readers slowly come to a realization about the nature of the world, while also allowing for the inclusion of fight scenes in between each drop. But I don't like when the plot clearly bends to meta-reasons like that.
Also, the plot doesn't have much thought put into it in general. As an example, in chapter 24, Amaris explains why fe was attacking Zero: "It was because I really believed that you [Grace] were kidnapped at the time." But in the very next chapter, (the needs of the plot apparently changed), and Amaris is portrayed as having never doubted Zero for a second, being heard saying "Grace-sama and Zero-dono must have their reasons. After all, [Zero's] a man who wouldn't even think of something like treason." Though if fe never actually doubted fem, then that just brings us back to the earlier question: Why did fe attack fem? And we don't have a satisfying answer. Things sometimes just gotta happen, 'cause it leads to the fight scenes, ya know?
It's supposed to be bad-ass for Zero to refuse to bow to people in authority, such as the king and the captain. And they seem to respond to feir defiant individualism by respecting fem and view feir lack of supplication as refreshing. The manga can't exactly portray those in authority as getting upset at not being honored, since that would come across as petty and insecure. But it definitely is a bit weird how they just shrug off feir attitude. By not showing subservience to their authority--through signs of honor and such--fe is presenting femself as a rival questioning their right to power. And considering feir strength, feir threat as a potential rival should be taken more seriously. So when they just brush off feir casual and dishonorable attitude, it sorta comes across as them cowering and retreating from a potential threat to their authority.
[Reviewed at chapter 28]