Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Double Review: Emma vols. 2 & 3 by Kaoru Mori

As I've mentioned before, manga and graphic novels are a new field for me, only discovered within the past year. Thanks to reviews and mentions by great book bloggers, I have been working my way through  quite an exciting range of stories.  One of the great recommendations I picked up was the Emma series by Kaoru Mori. Told in Victorian England and portraying the differences in class distinction, this manga is a fun read for this English teacher!

Synopsis:  In volume two our shy maid Emma has developed a friendship with our wealthy hero William.  Although their social classes are vastly different and their lifestyles separated by an access to money, the two are drawn to one another and enjoy being together.  As expected, difficulty for the pair comes from all the differences listed, and few can understand why William would even give Emma a second look.

(Spoiler Alert)  Volume 3 picks up with Emma leaving London.  Although William has expressed his interest in Emma and showed that to his family, this interest has not been received well.  Now with Emma out of the city and seemingly out of reach, their fears might be for nothing, as William has no way of reaching her or knowing where she has gone.

Review:  Although both volumes in this series are engaging and fun to read, I found that I enjoyed volume two the most.  Much of the action and excitement picked up in the second volume, as we come to realize that William just might be a sweet match for our shy maid Emma.  Around every bend in the story I found myself cheering for her.  Who doesn't want to see a lower class woman win the heart of a rich man?  Yes, I'm sure there is some of that damsel in distress saving going on here (that I recognize and shudder at my own ease in accepting), but it gives it that escape factor that I enjoy.  This series is really quite fun to read.  I love the Victorian Era and the restraint it always guarantees a piece.  In a manga such as these, that restraint is not lost, and manages to pull the story forward in a way that adds elements that pictures and narration alone can not.

If you haven't yet tried a manga and enjoy any element of the Victorian period, then I might recommend you give these a shot.  Mori has created a fun series thus far, with a story filled with complications and irony.  Check them out!

*FTC Disclosure:  This review based off of library copies of the story.


  1. I like your blog!

    Have a nice time!

  2. I really liked the new characters that are introduced after Emma leaves London and the romance between William's dad and mom.

  3. I haven't read any manga, but this looks like the right place to start!

  4. Paula--Thanks! So nice of you to stop by and say hi. :)

    Heidenkind--Ah oh, I haven't hit anything between William's dad and mom! I'll have to speed up to get there! I really like these and how I can get in a fast, happy read even if I don't have a lot of time for it!

    Iris--This is a fun series, and with that Victorian spin, it feels like some take on a classic you just haven't read yet. :)

  5. I really enjoyed this series. I want to own them someday and I must reread them at some point!

  6. Kailana--I'm really enjoying them too and hope to finish them for the readathon in a couple of weeks! :)