Vampire Kisses: Blood Relatives vol. 2 by Ellen Schreiber

Title: Vampire Kisses: Blood Relatives volume 2
Author: Ellen Schreiber
Illustrator: REM
Paperback:
Publisher: TOKYOPOP
Publish Date: 2008
ISBN: 9780061340826

Almost two months ago, I visited the book fair at my middle daughter’s school. With me were Gwen, it was her parent-teacher conference we had just finished, and Maggie. Knowing Maggie’s love for the anime cartoons, and pretty much anything Asian really, I pointed out a few of the Manga books. Of the books available, she picked Vampire Kissesbecause, unlike regular Manga, it opens and reads left to right like any other western-civilized reading material… regular Manga opens and reads right to left, making the average American feel as if the book is backwards or defective; some kind of misprint. So today I am writing my first review for a Manga book :-)

According to the Anime Critic website’s glossary, Manga is:

The Japanese term for comic book. In Japan, manga are targeted at all age groups and cover a wide range of genres. This is in contrast to Western comics which are typically based around superhero themes.

Vampire Kisses Blood Relatives volume 2 is a continuation of the first book (unfortunately, we’ve not found volume one anywhere) in which Raven, the goth heroine, and Alexander, teenage Vampire hero, meet and fall in love. In volume two, they are already in love and kiss a lot in the book (which always brought a loud “EwWwwWWw!!” from Maggie, followed by giggles, then her looking back at the panel again, and giggling some more).

In this book, we meet Claude, Alexander’s half-vampire sexy cousin, and his gang. He has come from Romania to Dullsville, that’s the name of the town Raven and Alexander live in, to steal their grandmother’s vial of whole vampire blood. The construct of Vampire Kisses is that vampire blood will turn a half-vamp into a full vamp and a human, like Raven, into a half-vamp (and make her immortal).

Claude pushes this angle to try to get Raven to betray Alexander’s trust and give him the vial, telling her how, when she’s a half-vampire, she will be able to really share a common bond and a deeper relationship with Alexander. In the meantime, Alexander struggles to work out a plan that will get rid of Claude without giving him the blood.

It was a lot more interesting an pleasurable to read than I had thought it would be. The illustrations are edgy and modern, Raven in her goth gear and Claude with his lip ring, and it has a fun comedic quality to it. We laughed at several silly events… like a lot of Japanese-style animation, Vampire Kisses‘ characters become Chibi-looking caricatures of themselves until they regain their composure. The fact it was about vampires appealed to me, and I think one of my next mangas will be Vampire Knight… and Fruit Basket for Maggie.

Still uncertain of my feelings about manga, and having nothing to compare it to, I’m going to give Vampire Kisses Blood Relatives volume 2 by Ellen Schreiber 3 out of 5 stars.

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10 Responses

  1. How does it compare to Twilight? Because that’s what it sounds like. Is Alexander a vegetarian vamp, too? :)

    • Actually, the story isn’t very similar to Twilight at all. Sure, it’s the good ol’ ”No, I will not turn you into a vampire!” thing, but other than that I don’t find this to be anything close to Twilight.

      The plot isn’t the best, but the Twilight plot is just… messed up. I really like Vampire Kisses, because it’s very cute and new in some way. It is a pity they change illustrator in the third book.

  2. I would not reccomend Vampire Knight, at least not for more mature audiences. Incest is shown throughout the manga but you don’t realize it is until it’s too late. The plot seems to become thinner and thinner which was a disappointment to me. It became too complicated it I did not enjoy reading it anymore.

    I’m not telling you not to read it, I’m just not particularly fond of it myself. Hope you have a pleasant year.

    Kilala

  3. In my comment above I made a typo. I meant that it IS for more matured audiences. I apologize

    Kilala

  4. I am not one for manga, but I may just read this. I’ve read books 1-5 in the regular book format of the Vampire Kisses Series, and I enjoyed them.

    To me, they were no where near as great as Twilight *But then, I am a Twilight obsessed fan, so very few books ever compare that high with Twilight, just my opinion of course!*, BUT they did have their own little… charm about them. They were more of a light read where as Twilight is a bit heavier– not just in pages, but also the content. Here, the vampires are more of a traditional vampire, nothing really surprising like in Twilight, and the characters are a bit more carefree and, in my opinion, do not have quiet as much depth as some in Twilight. Again, just my opinion. I gave the books any where from 4-5 stars when I read them, and when the others come out, I’ll no doubt read them too.

  5. you can read the full first manga in this series at this site. It is great quality! I definately reccomend it! Anyone know where online i can read the second one????!!! well email me at brobstmiranda@yahoo.com!!!!!

    http://www.mangafox.com/page/manga/read/971/vampire_kisses/chapter.30191.1-000.0/

    Well hope you read it!! It is really good. But really diffrent from the actual books.

  6. I have yet to read a manga, but I’m quite curious too. I’m glad you you enjoyed this one for the most part. I’m very big on vampires so it sounds like a good one!

    -Lauren

  7. Did you know that the Vampire Kisses mangas are based on a normal YA book series? It’s pretty popular.

  8. […] a couple open before passing them up. Then, when Gwen’s school had a book fair, I came across Vampire Kisses: Blood Relatives by Ellen Schreiber and finally bought my first graphic […]

  9. Did you know that the Vampire Kisses mangas are based on a normal YA book series? It’s pretty popular.

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