Pet Shop of Horrors, Vol. 5

by Matsuri Akino | Graphic Novels |
ISBN: 1591825024 Global Overview for this book
Registered by wingGoryDetailswing of Nashua, New Hampshire USA on 8/26/2011
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1 journaler for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by wingGoryDetailswing from Nashua, New Hampshire USA on Sunday, August 28, 2011
I discovered this series via Volume One of the Tokyo arc, and enjoyed it so much that I decided to try and read 'em all. I ordered this and several other volumes from Better World Books. (The series consists of stand-alone stories, linked by the setting and characters, so individual books can be enjoyed without having read the previous volumes.)

Later: Another set of fine - if dark - stories, with the lovely, lavish artwork and bits of humor. The first story does take an unexpected turn: a US congressman turns up at the shop, trying to buy a kirin to affect the next US election (!). (Some amusing side remarks from Leon, the detective who's become something of an unwilling ally of Count D's while still trying to figure him out.) The twist in this one pleased me very much.

The "Day Nursery" story takes Leon and D's relationship to a very surprising new level: Leon shows up at the shop with his little brother Chris, asking if D can look after the boy while he goes on a stakeout. And it turns out that while Leon sees most of D's "pets" as animals, Chris can see their human forms... At first the boy's startled and angry (not least because the pets keep making comments about how tasty he'd be if only they dared eat one of the Count's guests), but he befriends a boy who seems to live in the water, and... well, this one gets very deep very quickly. Chris has a tragic past and is currently mute due to psychological bullying, and Leon's tormented about his own job as a cop now that he feels more responsible for his brother. Some of D's pets step in to help Chris - he's astonished to find that they can hear his thoughts - and there are some truly heartwarming scenes here about love and loss and moving on.

The next story, "Darling," continues the "Christopher" thread with hilarious scenes of D being appalled at the mess in Leon's apartment, which he tries to tidy up for Chris' sake. (There's also the very odd scene in which Leon tells Chris that he's deputizing him to effectively spy for him while he's at D's; Leon *still* thinks D's a criminal - and in some ways he's not wrong - but if he really feels that way it's strange that he'd trust him with Chris. So, yeah, Leon's a bit of a mess himself!) When Chris rescues a lost girl who turns out to be another magical creature, whose absence has become an international incident... This one has a very entertaining climax, with a bickering royal family offering D anything if he'll grant them the token-of-rulership.

"Dance," the final story in this book, focuses on a dancer who's jealous of her lover's new protegee. D shows her some truly amazing dancers from among his menagerie, leaving her with a weapon that she can choose to use to regain her position - but how will she use it? Bittersweet ending here, with some glorious artwork (again).

[There's an entertaining TV Tropes page for the series, but beware of spoilers!]

Released 1 mo ago (10/27/2021 UTC) at Little Free Library, New Searles Rd [OBCZ] in Nashua, New Hampshire USA

WILD RELEASE NOTES:

Guidelines for safely visiting and stocking Little Free Libraries during the COVID-19 pandemic, from the LFL site here.

I left this book in my Little Free Library on this rainy day - hope someone enjoys it!

[See other recent releases in NH here.]

*** Released for the 2021 Spook-tacular challenge. ***

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