Thursday, November 4, 2010

Review: Emma volumes 8, 9, & 10 by Kaoru Mori

Do you ever wonder when or if life will ever slow down enough to catch your breath?  I've been feeling that a bit lately.  I have a lot to be grateful for, but am as busy as I've ever been and wondering how that happened!  Just as a quick piece of health-front news, I met with my surgeon and was told everything is good.  No cancer.  *sigh*  That was a HUGE relief, obviously.  I'm still struggling with laryngitis, but am sounding less and less like the bass singer from the Oakridge Boys. 

Regardless of all that life is handing out right now with health, work, and life, things are good.  Unfortunately, I missed pretty much every author signing or event that came up this past month and was feeling pretty low about it all, but you have to do what you can.  I've still been reading like crazy though and finished up the Emma manga series by Kaoru Mori.  Because volumes and 8 & 9 are so similar, I thought I'd combine them with volume 10 for a quick triple review! Spoilers ahead.

Synopsis:  (Volumes 8 & 9)  These volumes continue off of the story of Victorian house maid and soon to be wife of upper society William.  Both volumes expand on the stories of the family Emma worked for, of William's previous fiance, of William's parents, etc.  Not as obviously connected to the main plot, these two volumes merely add more side information about characters we've met in previous installments of the book.

Synopsis:  (Volume 10)  The final book in the series returns us to William and Emma's sweet relationship as they spend more time together and prepare for their upcoming marriage.  William continues to introduce Emma to his upper-crust society, ignoring any disregard others might have for his housemaid fiance.  As the story concludes, we are welcomed into their marriage and dinner celebration, which round out the story with a fairy-tale happy ending.

Review:  While I wanted wanted to get to the conclusion of the story, I thought the side information about the other characters interesting and an okay diversion.  The final installment, with its wedding and finale to the story was a fun little happy ending.  I do have to say that I thought the reserve between William and Emma still a little strange.  I know that sounds odd for me to say, but some of the scenes (such as in the beginning when they go out riding bikes) to feel more like siblings or acquaintances than a soon to be married couple.  After the drama of the previous installments it might have just seemed like a resistant-free ending?  Overall though, I thought this was a fun diversion from my ordinary reads and will have to give manga another try!

*FTC Disclosure:  The review was based on library copies of the story.

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