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Godchild, Vol. 1 (v. 1) Paperback – March 7, 2006

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Manga readers with a taste for stylish, delirious melodrama will enjoy this addition to the long-running "The Cain Saga" which also includes the manga series Angel Sanctuary. Late 19th-century London society women swoon at the sight of slender, sloe-eyed young Lord Cain, Earl of Hargreaves. They don't recognize his hereditary burden of melancholy, from which he distracts himself by tracking down dangerous maniacs. He is accompanied and sometimes aided by Riff, his manservant and extremely close companion, and by his doll-like, 10-year-old half-sister, Marie, who serves as an unwitting lure for serial killers. Cain is menaced by his mad-scientist half-brother Dr. Jizabel Disraeli, assassin for a secret criminal organization founded by Cain's monstrously abusive father. The four stories in this volume are thankfully self-contained, each developing from an initially baffling mystery into a frenzy of dark revelations and derring-do, after which Cain is left cuddling Marie or gazing soulfully at Riff. Yuki's stories revel in hints of spiritual angst and kinky tendencies, reinforcing the hero's romantic alienation. Her art is lovingly detailed but dramatically cut, with startlingly odd angles and abrupt jumps from closeups to distant shots; managing to create and sustain a giddy mood in which the absurd action can be convincing and even moving. (Mar.)
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About the Author

Kaori Yuki was born in Tokyo, Japan, and started drawing at a very early age. Following her debut work Natsufuku No Erie (Erie in Summer Uniform), she wrote a compelling series of short stories: Zankoku Na Douwatachi (Cruel Fairytales), Neji (Screw), and Sareki Okoku (Gravel Kingdom). As proven by her best-selling series Angel Sanctuary and The Cain Saga, her celebrated body of work has etched an indelible mark in the gothic comics genre. She likes mysteries and British films, and is a fan of the movie Dead Poets Society and the show Twin Peaks.
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Product Details

  • Series: GodChild (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: VIZ Media LLC; 1st Edition edition (March 7, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 142150233X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1421502335
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.7 x 7.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #396,371 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Holly on March 19, 2006
Format: Paperback
Ah, Kaori Yuki. How do I love thee. Let me count the ways:

You've taken nursery rhymes and twisted them into murder mysteries;

You create artwork that is simultaneously beautiful and violent;

You mold the most absurd scenarios into moving stories;

You've captured a protagonist who is every bit as twisted and psychotic as his enemies;

You've encapsulated comic relief in a GWAHAHAing buffoon named Oscar;

You filled each episode with trivia on everything from opera to medieval torture masks;

You've saved the subtlety of an unlikely love story for the very last scenes of a Victorian tragedy.

I do hope that Viz eventually releases the first five volumes of the Cain series to add depth to Kaori's voice. But even without them, Godchild bewitches.

The venue of 'Shojo Beat' slightly perturbs me, since Godchild must share space with relationship-centered fluff. It's like shelving Irvine Welsh in the romance section. Does not compute. But Viz is doing quite well with the translation and staying true to the heart of the story.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on March 29, 2006
Format: Paperback
Godchild was my third Kaori Yuki manga. I dislike shojo in general, but her stories can reach out to both boys and girls (though why a guy would want to read a story about a preposturously attractive nobleman with pierced ears I may never know). Godchild is very different from Angel Sanctuary. It is less gory/bloody, there is less of a plot at the beginning, and it is more realistic in the fact that there are not many spirits and very little angels/demons and the like. The themes, however, are pretty much the same-- forbidden love, murder, death, destruction, destiny, and family relationships, only this time the story focuses on Cain, a beautiful seventeen(ish) year old nobleman living in a 19th century London where he is constantly stalked by murder and mystery. Always gluied to the side of Riffuel Raffit (called Riff), his faithful butler, he attempts to sort out his troubled (more than you know) past and find his evil father, who may or may not be dead. Sounds pretty tame, right? Well, for Kaori Yuki, this certainly is a very tame first volume. There is blood in this volume, yes, but it is very minimal, and you don't see the gore like you did in Angel Sanctuary. It gets worse (at least a little bi worse) in volumes to come, but I think that Godchild is different from Angel Sanctuary in the fact that it is more of a rather violent crime drama (with some mature themes thrown into the mix) than it is a oh-my-god-they-just-blew-up-that-guys-head-and-oh-my-god-they-are-ripping-peoples-limbs-off! thingamabob. Which is good, if you're like me, and find a voluminous amount of blood, gore, and cannibalism rather disturbing after the fifth time it's happened in one volume. Kaori Yuki's art is still fantastic, but a little bit cramped, and some pictures in the Atogaki will make fangirls squeal in delight. Yay Godchild! Hopefully Viz will keep up the rather faithful translation in future volumes! ^^
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Ari Welsh on March 16, 2006
Format: Paperback
Being a big fan of Kaori Yuki and her spooky tales, and Count Cain being my favorite among them all, I couldn't but shiver with the deepest dread and fear when I got to know it had been licensed, not just that but it had been taken by Viz. Even so I couldn't help myself, I couldn't resit the idea of actually own a copy of the first volume and being able to read it curled up in bed instead of frying my eyeballs at the computer.

What I got, while not the flawless work I would have wished for Godchild, is still good, and I'm still glad I own it.

The artwork is all there, no censure this time for a change.

The translation, it does stumbles at times, but is still Kaori Yuki's Godchild, what annoyed me was that Merry kept addressing Cain as, well, "Cain" instead of "brother" or what would have been better "big brother", I just couldn't understand what they were trying to accomplish with that, and the way they used every opportunity to remark Cain was only her "half-brother" I can see how that is somewhat necessary without the first 5 volumes to give you the back story, but once would have been enough.

As for the slashy bits, I was so very happy when I arrived to one of my favorites at the end of Black Sheep. "You're the only one in this world who can touch my scars, Riff" they didn't mess that up, Godchild just might have a chance.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By viciousadvent on February 21, 2007
Format: Paperback
Godchild is the sequel to The Cain Saga, which has also recently been brought out by VIZs Shoujo Beat line of manga. To enjoy Godchild you don't have to have read The Cain Saga first, since it introduces the characters and plot well enough to easily get the gist of what goes on.

For those of you familiar with Kaori Yuki's work in either The Cain Saga or Angel Sanctuary, you'll find that Godchild has a very different style to it, although the layout is much the same as in The Cain Saga, being episodic, but still gently swimming through one general story arc. I won't spoil any of it for you, but suffice it to say there's a family conflict here.

Godchild is certainly extremely gory, and not for the faint of heart. This said, gore is pretty much the only thing that works toward it's OT (older teen) rating (unless of course, you can factor in sheer freakin' creepiness). There are five episodes in the first graphic novel, each of which deals with some fairy tale or children story turned visceral and bloody murder, which are always wonderfully portrayed by Yuki's wonderful art and writing style, and if you're into stuff like that, this should definitely be a plus.

I only have beef with one part of Godchild: it's classification. By almost no means other than art should Godchild be considered a Shoujo manga. Just because Kaori Yuki's other works have been Shoujo, doesn't automatically make this one so. However, this complaint doesn't have a whole lot of merit, as it doesn't make one ounce of difference in how enjoyable the experience as a whole should be for you.

Overall, Godchild is equal parts story and character driven, coupled with an art style that's absolutely a joy to behold. But don't let the classification fool you - it's not a romance for the most part. If you're into horror, mystery, early 20th century aristocratic London, or manga as a whole, Godchild is definitely worth picking up and intently flipping through.
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