Soulless: The Manga, Vol. 1 ~ Gail Carriger

  • Title:  Soulless: The Mnnga, Vol. 1
  • Author:  Gail Carriger
  • Series:  The Parasol Protectorate Manga #1
  • Genre:  Graphic Novel, Manga, Fantasy
  • Format:  Paperback
  • Source:  Own Copy
  • Reviewed by: Valerie
  • Rating:  5 out of 5

Description:  The life of a spinster in Victorian London isn’t an easy one on the best of days, but such a life becomes infinitely more complicated when said spinster is “soulless” – a preternatural bridging the gap between the natural and supernatural worlds. Miss Alexia Tarabotti has this unique distinction, and when she is assailed at a formal gathering by a rove vampire, an encounter that results in the death of the half-starved creature, her circumstances become exponentially more complicated indeed! Now caught up in an intrigue with life or death stakes, Alexia must rely on all her talents to outmatch the forces conspiring against her, but it may be the man who has caught her eye – Lord Conall Maccon – and their budding flirtation that truly drives her to her wit’s end!

Review:  Let me begin by admitting that I am not quite sure that I fully understand what distinguishes something as manga or not. Therefore, I cannot speak to how mangarific this graphic novel may or may not be. What I can offer is this reader’s testimony of sincere pleasure in the manga version Soulless.

I am a huge fan of the Parasol Protectorate series from Gail Carriger. This adaption of the first book, Soulless did not disappoint. It is a great light version of the original story, yet REM did a great job of capturing the adventure and sentiment of the book. The manga-style artwork even further captured the whimsical tone that permeates the Parasol Protectorate series. Facial expressions were really well-done, capturing the essence of the characters in each scene. I particularly enjoyed the frames that depicted both Alexia and Conall when they were especially aggravated. The cover art was visually striking, though not quite as appealing as the novel’s cover.

Obviously, this manga series will appeal to Parasol Protectorate fans. However, I do think that story is solid enough to stand on its own merit. Perhaps some manga fans will discover the PP series because of the graphic novels?

My favorite thing about this adaptation is that it provides a quick way for me to revisit some of my favorite characters without having to invest the time in re-reading the entire book. I am eagerly awaiting the manga adaptations of the rest of the series.