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Emma, Vol. 3 Paperback – March 7, 2007
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About the Author
Kaoru Mori's previous series, Emma, about a maid and a gentleman in Victorian England, has been lauded by Library Journal and was named to the YALSA Great Graphic Novels list. A Bride's Story has only broadened her fan base in Japan and the U.S. with its elegant style and delicate story. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
Meanwhile, with Emma beyond his reach, the Young Master Jones is doing his best to play the dutiful son; working harder, attending social dates, even doing charity work. This, of course, confuses his sister, Grace, and you can feel the tension and mild cognitive dissonance in her whenever she's in panel... that is, when she's not flustered by a trio of hens clucking away in admiration of her.
Then there's Eleanor... pining away.
The story progresses as both Emma and William do their best to live apart in their newly assumed roles, but fate has something else in mind as Emma meets someone in the countryside with an immutable connection to the Jones household.
The art, as always, is beautiful and detailed with tons of work put into the historical setting (this rings true for the story aspects as well... I think it would take a scholar to spot any non-dialogue related inaccuracies). Mori-sensei went to a lot of effort to make each character, setting, etc., unique and distinctive and succeeded brilliantly.
Pace and flow feel fairly natural save for a few off-panel incidents whose build up and results happen in-panel, but these are mainly comedic moments such as the soiled sheets and bump on the head incidents and actually add a humanizing touch.
As always, I most heartily recommend a buy (hell, buy two or three and give some to friends)... and apologies for the late review.
This book begins with Emma riding the train away from London en route to her childhood home where she was miserably poor as a child 10 years ago. On the train she meets a maid who works in the country, and ends up being hired by a German family with a large wait-staff. Gradually, she learns the new job and begins to fit in with the staff and family.
Meanwhile, William shapes up, does what his father tells him, and prepares to assume the family business. Both he and his family get along with Eleanor Campbell, who comes from an aristocratic family, is just what his father wants in a future wife for his son, and is cute and kind.
Overall, this series was a good quick read. It's a mindless romantic comedy. There isn't much that's serious, including the ominous class differences which are not at all developed and just sort of there. Characters reemerge through the series and are fleshed out over the course of 7 books. Even minor characters are likely to reemerge and become more developed at some point in the future. The series does a good job of building personalities, and a self-contained world.
Mori has split William and Emma; she took off for home on a train at the end of vol. 2 ("home", we find out, being in Yorkshire; for some reason I'd assumed she came from south of London). A chance encounter on the train leads to her employment with a nouveau-riche German family once she gets there. William, on the other hand, is trying to move on with his life and become the model son his father is looking for. Mori takes a chance splitting her protagonists, but everything right about this manga remains so; it's a stunner through and through, at least the volumes I've read so far. *** ½