Monday, May 21, 2012

Manga Monday: Young Miss Holmes

Young Miss Holmes: Casebook 1-2
Kaoru Shintani

It's been awhile, but Manga Monday is back!  This week, I'm talking about Seven Seas release Young Miss Holmes, which in Japan, goes by the title Christie: High TensionYoung Miss Holmes is a title that immediately gets the concept of the manga across, however.  This book follows Christie, the niece of famed detective Sherlock Holmes.  In these adventures, we get to know this rambunctious ten-year-old who has inherited her uncle's intellect and knack for solving cases.  Already, she's bored with her studies, and it seems that the only thing that really holds her interest is when she's in the middle of a new mystery.  Young Miss Holmes takes place in a Victorian setting, with a retro art style that suits the story really well.  The art of the pages is rather detailed, with nice cartooning demonstrated by Shintani.  Christie is a very likable character who it's hard not to like; her enthusiasm is just infectious.  And she has several servants around her who happen to have skills in combat that aid her often when she sticks her nose in a new case.  I really like the interactions between Christie and the other characters in this book, particularly Sherlock Holmes himself, as well as Watson.  We actually often see Christie's side of a case, as well as her uncle's, as they both come to the same conclusions about a case in different ways, which gives a neat perspective to the crimes.  And since Christie can deduct things very clearly and articulately, she puts Watson to shame, who is often intimidated by her when she's around.  This is just a really fun mystery series with a fantastic female protagonist at its heart.  And since it's serialized in the same Japanese magazine as Dance in the Vampire Bund, there's a crossover with that title in the story The Adventure of the Sussex Vampire.  This is a rather thick book, which means that you get a lot more bang for your buck, and I doubt anyone is going to disappointed with this smartly-written, lovingly-drawn gem.

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