Black Butler, Vol. 17

by Yana Toboso | Graphic Novels |
ISBN: 0316376701 Global Overview for this book
Registered by wingGoryDetailswing of Nashua, New Hampshire USA on 8/7/2014
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Journal Entry 1 by wingGoryDetailswing from Nashua, New Hampshire USA on Thursday, August 07, 2014
I've been enjoying the manga Black Butler (aka Kuroshitsuji) for some time - not to mention the anime, of which I have Season 1 on DVD (though it departs dramatically from the manga). I ordered this volume from Barnes and Noble.

The series is set in a slightly alternate-reality Victorian London (cell phones, magic), and features the adventures of a 12-year-old boy trying to run his family business while catching criminals for the queen - all with the help of his demonic butler.

In this volume, the cover-art gag changes the sword-wielding gent on the cover (Lizzie's brother Edward) into a strapping-tape-wielding shipper-guy inside, with the inner back cover expanding on the gag.

This volume picks up from the events in Volume 16, in the middle of the cricket match between the four houses at the elite school in which Ciel has enrolled as part of a plan to find out what happened to the queen's missing cousin. Ciel's determined to help his team win, and is more than willing to play fast and loose with the rules to do so - from taking Sebastian's suggestion to let Lao bring some lovely ladies to watch the match (and to distract the other team's batsmen) to coming up with legal-but-shady pitching techniques that press the rules to their limits. And the game is EPIC, with the artwork including the sports-action as well as the emotional background - when Ciel's team captain takes his bat and positions it firmly on the ground, he's thinking "Sword in the Stone", and the artwork shows the Arthurian scene behind him.

Lots of enjoyable action here, much tension on the field and in the stands - and amusing flashbacks to show how Ciel and Sebastian worked out each of their special techniques. And when the game turns out the way Ciel wanted - and he seems deliriously happy - I admit I almost cried; the poor kid has had such a horrible life, is doomed by his bargain with Sebastian, and usually has to do his job in truly awful circumstances, it's so lovely to see him surrounded by joyous teammates who value him, and to see some semblance of a normal life for a kid his age... even though we all know it won't last.

Ah, well. The match was great, the post-game celebration delightfully wacky - and then we come to the late-night special meeting, the purpose of all of Ciel's actions, where he hopes to meet the school's headmaster and find out what became of the queen's cousin (and the other youths who are missing). And find out he does {shudder}...

[For more about the manga and the anime adaptation, see the TV Tropes page - but beware of spoilers! Also, note that the plot of the anime departs rather drastically from that of the manga.]

Journal Entry 2 by wingGoryDetailswing at Little Free Library, Roby Park in Nashua, New Hampshire USA on Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Released 3 wks ago (11/21/2018 UTC) at Little Free Library, Roby Park in Nashua, New Hampshire USA

WILD RELEASE NOTES:

I left this book in the Little Free Library on this snowy day; hope someone enjoys it!

[See other recent releases in NH here.]

*** Released for the 2018 TV Series release challenge. ***

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