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Manga Review

Book Cover

Vampire Knight
Volume 1


Author: Matsuri Hino
Artist: Matsuri Hino
Viz Media
RRP: £5.99, US $8.99
ISBN-13: 978 1 4215 0822 1
ISBN-10: 1 4215 0822 2
Ages: T+ (For older teens)
Available 01 September 2008

Yuki is the adopted daughter of the headmaster of Cross Academy, having been rescued ten years before, from a vampire attack, by Kaname Kuran. Now she hold the prestigious post of being one of the Guardians for the school who try to keep the day students away from the night students as they are unaware that the Night Class is made up completely of vampires...

Vampire Knight is a manga written by Matsuri Hino. As is the way with mangas, the book has also spawned an anime series and two drama CDs. The story originally appeared in 2005 in LaLa Magazine.

The plot of the first book is pretty straightforward. Yuki fulfils her role of Guardian with Zero Kiryu, whose parents where killed by a true blood vampire. Although Zero seems to hate and want to kill all vampires, he is hiding a great secret. Having been bitten by a true blood, he is in fact turning into that which he hates the most.

From the PR blurb it would appear that the book is highly popular and ranked in Japan's Tohan top ten, though I’m not really sure why as the book, as a whole, is a little too insubstantial for my tastes. I realise that it was written for teenage girls but that should not preclude providing an interesting plot or a compelling central character.

Yuki is not a believable character, not given the situation which she finds herself in. She is fully trained to stand between the world of humans and vampires, so why does she spend so much of her time either being chased or being bitten? Not someone I would have made a Guardian.

I may have missed a panel, but the Day Class consists purely of simpering young females who are all in love with the universally beautiful male vampires which make up the Night Class. What could have been a bit edgy and subversive is played for romantic laughs.

There are some elements, which may be interesting, it depends where the story takes us, otherwise this is clichéd average fare.


Charles Packer

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