Friday, May 09, 2008

Devil's Bride, vol. 1

By Se-Young Kim
Released in the US

Slugline: A devil is always ready to make a deal for his yaoi love.

Devils are more like a powerful spirits, vampire and low level god all wrapped in one. The unnamed devil of the story is trying to live more like humans, because his nature is destructive and he wants to be creative. He lives near some human villages and thinks that by having a bride, he will become more human. A poor family basically sells off one of their children to him, and takes off before he discovers that the child is a boy, not a girl. Not that it really matters that much to him. Now, that I cansorta buy, because he isn't really human, so I get he can be omnisexual rather than being an yaoi pretty boy. Ley , the boy, dies, not sure if it accidental or deliberate, but the devil decides to keep him alive, but in order to do so he need human parts to returnLey to humanity. As a devil, he has decided to offer his serves to mortals, not for souls which is normal payment, but in body parts. Meanwhile a blind heir elsewhere in the world has been forced to prostitute himself to soldiers to save his kingdom, and his boyhood companion has to be take some harsh actions.

It is an interesting set-up for an anthology story, with the ability for their to be one-off stories to that tie in devil's search for parts to help Ley recover from being a little bit dead, but it is the framing device is far more meaningful and involved that the usual ones. So the setup for the anthology structure takes up enough time that the first anthology story is not finished in this volume, though we do seem to have hit the first turning point on the last page. Of course, it is has a yaoi focus, with a tall lanky pretty boy and the younger, more effeminate looking 'junior' member of the partnership. Which is one of my major icks here, in that it seems that one half of the pairings are inherently in the inferior position. Yeah, it may be typical how yaoi is arranged but that doesn't make me feel any better. But the story is well structured, the characters have some depth and the art is 100% pretty boy, so that assuages my other concerns.

Devil's Bride, vol. 1 is also available from Right Stuf, Intl., an online retailer specializing in anime and manga.


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