February 24, 2010

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Cantarella Volume 2

Written by You Higuri
Illustrated by You Higuri
Go! Comi

[Posted for context as I pick this series back up.]

Cesare fights against his curse as his father ascends to Pope, sealing his earlier deal with the devil. Cesare falls further and further under the influence of the demons who plague him and yet continues to aid his father's claims to being the head of the Church. In fact, he's even going as far as being a Cardinal. But for what purpose?

Higuri continues her alternative history in Italy as she does something most historians probably didn't think possible--she makes the Borgia family look worse. The behind the scenes manipulations spill across the page as both father and son work to gain an advantage. I really like how Higuri sets up the parallel, even as Cesare continues to pretend to be his father's willing servant. It's going to be interesting to see how and when Higuri sets up the conflict between the two of them. [Editor's note--as this is an ongoing series, that may be a ways in the future yet!]

We also see the addition of a few new cast members, such as Chiaro, a hired killer who ends up sticking with Cesare after foiling plans to have him killed. The promise that Cesare makes to him seems rather ominous, especially withe demons lurking about.

Higuri's art continues to be solid, giving the reader the feel that he or she is in period Italy. I don't know how accurate she is, but it works for me, and I think only an expert might find errors.

I am really enjoying this story, and look forward to reading more.