Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Emma, vol. 3

The story: Emma has decided to return to her hometown on the coast of England. But, while on the train, she meets another maid and is offered a job. Joining a German family at their countryside mansion, Emma goes from a staff of one at her former job to a large home with the staff to match. And, much like it did in London, it seems that her quiet demeanor has caught the attention of yet another young man. Later, Emma and her mistress pay a visit to a friend, Mrs. Trollop, who has a connection to William, no less! Meanwhile, William has decided to do as his father asks until he can pursue the woman he loves.

Reaction: This was a sedate, but intriguing volume. While Emma has an adventure of sorts in the Meredith household, there's little about William, except for his renewed sense of tragic duty to his family. Honestly, I seemed to enjoy this volume quite a bit and I think it was because of the lack of William. I really do appreciate Emma's quiet strength. And, although she does have an emotional moment or two, she is making the best of a bad situation.

Deep thoughts: A couple of times in this volume, there are unusual pets -- both a squirrel kept by one of the children in the Meredith household and a monkey in the possession of Mrs. Trollop. Much like now, it seems that exotic pets were a mark of those able to lead a life of leisure. Thankfully, not too many people see fit to keep these types of animals these days!

Artwork: I really loved the Meredith children in this chapter; they were so cute! And, I'll admit, I did like the constant stoic attitude possessed by the German servants, Hans and Adele. Additionally, the Meredith home seems elaborate and grand in nature, but not nearly as impressive as Mrs. Trollop's home, which, while smaller, is filled with exotic plants and furnished with items from the Far East.

The verdict: Highly recommended. As I mentioned, I like Emma quite a bit. Her perseverance is admirable, and her character continues to impress me with her hidden skills and talents. While I could have done without the two chapters featuring William, especially the one we're shown here, it was interesting to see how he was spending his time while his love was away. Emma is available in the U.S. from CMX.

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