The Earl and the Fairy, vol. 2: a review

I was originally going to review Dragon Warrior by Janet Chapman.  However, I wasn’t able to get past the first chapter.  I didn’t realize this is the second in a series and so many names blurred past with so much dialogue that I couldn’t hang in there.  Plus, I didn’t get to see any interaction between the two main characters.  I was told it.  It’s just not my cuppa.

So, I bring you my review of yet another manga.  After reading the first one, I was really looking forward to volume two.  Does it live up to my expectations?

The Earl and The Fairy, Vol. 2The Earl and The Fairy, Vol. 2 by Ayuko

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Volume two continues Edgar and Lydia’s quest for the treasured sword, battling robbers and traitors. There’s a vague sense of tragedy in this volume, though the ending carries on very well.

Edgar turns out to be a good guy after all. No, wait. That’s not entirely true. He has the makings of an excellent villain. If it weren’t for that darned sense of noblesse oblige (and I mean that in the best sense of the phrase), he’d have already gone to the dark side. In this volume we find out just how devoted Edgar can be to those who love him, platonic or otherwise. It’s frightening. Though I don’t approve the means, I have to admire the motivation.

Like most bad-boy romances, Lydia is put into the role of his savior. What makes this story good is that she’s just as strong in her convictions as Edgar is in his sense of responsibility. As Edgar puts it at one point, “I can never quite get her under my thumb.” And he likes it that way. The relationship they begin to casually form is based on hope and joy (as compared to his bond with Ermine which is based on shared pain and suffering).

Ermine, instead of becoming the hated Other Woman Obstacle, becomes a very sympathetic character in this volume, one who puts Edgar’s welfare above her own. It lifts this love triangle above the usual petty nonsense into the realms of sincere tragedy.

There’s a couple of twists I didn’t see coming in this volume, one of which completely took me by surprise. The resolution to the merrow’s riddle made sense and, though I expected the general end, I didn’t expect the way things turned out. Not everyone gets what they want by the end of this volume. However, it was a good, hopeful end to the arc. I’m looking forward to volume three.

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