Ryu’s Musings – Marriage Scandal, Showbiz Baby!, Pilgrim’s Castle, Powerful Persuasion

Posted on May 17th, 2011 by Ryu Sheng |

Notice: All Harlequin titles are only available as Kindle Books from Amazon, or on the eManga website. There are to date no printed page versions, and no plans for printed versions either.

9784596950802 ISBN-13: 9784596950802
Language: English
Direction: Right to Left
Pages: 128
by: Marito Ai (Art), Sharon Kendrick (Original Story)
Publisher: Harlequin K.K
Type: Mini-series, One-Shot 
Genre: Josei, Drama, Romance

Synopsis:

Seduced by Matteo, a world-famous actor, the once-innocent Jennifer marries the superstar and starts her own acting career. But at the height of their popularity, their busy lives tear them apart and they go their separate ways. They thought it was over, until they bump into each other on the red carpet at the Cannes Film Festival. Although at first tempers flare, in a moment of passion in the elevator they make love once more. A few weeks later, Jennifer starts to notice changes happening within her body…

 

9784776714262a

ISBN-13: 9784776714262
Language: English
Direction: Right to Left
Pages: 128
by: Misuzu Sasaki (Art), Violet Winspear (Original Story)
Publisher: Harlequin K.K
Type: Mini-Series, One-Shot 
Genre: Josei, Drama, Romance

Synopsis:

Yvain has been working as a maid in the Sandell household since she was 15. One day she accompanies her employers on a luxury cruise ship. Who would have thought the ship would sink! Yvain is swept away by the strong currents of the sea… When she awakens, she finds herself on the Island of Lions, where the mysterious yet alluring marquess, Juan, lives…

 

9784596950932b ISBN-13: 9784596950932
Language: English
Direction: Right to Left
Pages: 128
by: Ayako Shibata (Art), Margaret Mayo (Original Story)
Publisher: Harlequin K.K
Type: Mini-Series, One-Shot  
Genre: Josei, Drama, Romance

Synopsis:

A job offer from the UK’s largest advertising agency comes totally out of the blue for Celina, so she decides to take the job interview out of interest. There, she meets an outstandingly gorgeous man, Luciano, who is president of the company. Celina is alarmed by his irresistible charm and wants to refuse the job, regardless of the unusually high salary. But she has no other choice but to accept Luciano’s offer in order to finance her sister’s tuition. It is too late when Celina realizes that she has made the wrong choice. She has already been trapped deep in his risky scheme.

This is a first for me, what we have here are two manga volumes i’m glad i’ll never see again. And one I actually started out disliking, but found a growing liking for on it’s second and third read through.

Marriage Scandal, Showbiz Baby!

This first one was okay in a way. The basic story is solid however it’s the characters I just couldn’t come to like. In fact I found everything about them irritating. Stories like this usually work because the leading girl Is usually a so called commoner, dragged into the light of high society. Watching her try and come to terms with her new status, and he ridicule she gets, is all part of the experience.

When your lead has already passed all that and is now part of the high society, it loses all most all of it’s feeling. What we’re left with is two spoiled rich folks going at each other.

Sadly thats what we get initially in this volume. Jennifer initially comes off as a stuck up cow that, frankly, needs a tanned arse. Her personality is a bit. no a lot, warped, and I hated her almost from the outset. It certainly doesn’t help that her character design makes her look like a stuck up bitch as well.

Matteo is yet another character I disliked. Once again every thing about him screams arrogance and stuck up pig. His personality is just as warped as Jennifer’s, and his character design is just as bad.

The story itself doesn’t have anything to make me interested either. Sure we get a bit of tension right at the end of the volume, but by then it’s to little to late, and it’s so you know how it’s going to end before it’s even fully started.

In the end what we have is a an unstatisfying story that I was glad to be finished with.

Pilgrim’s Castle

When I initialy read this I hated it, Like the previous volume everything about it rubbed me the wrong way. the art is horrendous, the story is weak, and the characters even weaker. However when I re-read the volume a second time before doing this review I found I actually rather liked it this time around.

Misuzu’s art is not that good, frankly at times I think it’s plain old horrid. Sometimes she leaves faces incomplete, and at others it looks like the lead girls face is a ball of putty. As for the Marquees, my inital reaction was one of “I wanna smack him”. However on the second and third read though I got the impression that that was the feeling that Misuzu was trying to give us.

The story isn’t a great one, a true rags to riches story in a way. But as with all these short mini volumes it leaves a feeling that there was so much more to be explored if there was more pages to it.

I never did like Yvain, her character design changes so much and is so inconsistent it’s hard not to wonder if we’re getting different characters. I think this, tied with my initial reactions to the Marquees were what caused my initial dislike.

If you try and read past this though, it’s not a bad love story. It has all the elements you expect, an evil witch *cough*house-keeper*cough*, beauty, and a beast hehe.

Powerful Persuasion

This was my second volume that I didn’t really like. I tried to read it all the way through, but I just couldn’t be bothered. Everything about it was weak and unexiting. I usually try to read everything fully when i’m asked to review it, but I genuinely couldn’t be bothered to read this through.

I think the story had potential. However when you have a complex story like this trying to cram it into a 120pages is just impossible. We have to much information, to much going on and to be explained, and to much intrigue. The story is rushed, disjointed, and wasn’t adapted very well.

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