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I Belong


Review: Soulless Manga: Vol. 1 by Gail Carriger & Rem

Title: Soulless: The Manga Volume 1

Author: Gail Carriger

Illustrator: Rem

Genre: Steampunk Manga

Series: Parasol Protectorate Manga (Book 1)

Publication Date: March 1, 2012

Format: Paperback, 224 Pages

ISBN-10: 031618201X (Yen Press)

ISBN-13: 978-0316182010 (Yen Press)

Reviewed by: Kristie

Synopsis:

Alexia Tarabotti is laboring under a great many social tribulations. First, she has no soul. Second, she’s a spinster whose father is both Italian and dead. Third, she was rudely attacked by a vampire, breaking all standards of social etiquette.

Where to go from there? From bad to worse apparently, for Alexia accidentally kills the vampire — and then the appalling Lord Maccon (loud, messy, gorgeous, and werewolf) is sent by Queen Victoria to investigate. With unexpected vampires appearing and expected vampires disappearing, everyone seems to believe Alexia responsible. Can she figure out what is actually happening to London’s high society? Or will her soulless ability to negate supernatural powers prove useful or just plain embarrassing? Finally, who is the real enemy, and do they have treacle tart?

Quick & Dirty: Hits all the high points of the novel without any of the fluff. Soulless translates well into the Manga form with snappy lines and quirky characters.

Opening Sentence: Mama, it says here that a new gentlemen’s club opened last week in Mayfair.

Excerpt: No

The Review:

I’m going to start off my review with this note. If you are a manga fan, I highly recommend the Soulless Manga: Volume 1. It is funny, it’s quirky, and it hits all the high notes of the novel without any of the filler. There are a few things that may cause problems for true fans of the Parasol novels. In the manga, all the characters are pretty and young (minus the wax-like man) and boob-alicious. I always saw Professor Lyall as middle aged but here he looks like he is barely twenty. I did feel like one thing was missing from the manga, since you weren’t given the characters thoughts, it was hard to understand character motivations. The novel is full of each characters inner thoughts so it did feel like something was missing. Alexia never really complained about her Italian heritage or her father. Lord Maccon only mentions once that he is Scottish later in the manga, otherwise you would never know. I did read the novel and the manga back to back so I just filled in the gaps from memory.

The manga also starts off differently than the novel. Alexia and her family are at the breakfast table reading about Alexia’s adventures the night before from the paper. Although her family doesn’t realize that the paper is talking about her. The vampire attack is played as more of a flashback in Alexia’s mind, where you learn about Alexia’s abilities as a Soulless. Her Soulless abilities allow her to negate supernatural powers, temporarily turning them human as long as she is touching them skin to skin.

As I stated before, since there is barely any filler, the manga is a fast paced a fun read. This manga is a fantastic translation of the novel, scenes and dialogue match the book exactly. Lord Akeldama’s flamboyancy translates perfectly into manga form (his character was definitely made to be drawn!). Soulless Manga, Volume 1 is a must have for the fans of the Parasol Protectorate series.

The Parasol Protectorate Manga:

1. Soulless: The Manga, Volume 1

2. Soulless: The Manga, Volume 2 (November 20, 2012)

FTC Advisory: Yen Press provided me with a copy of Soulless: The Manga, Volume 1. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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