Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Alice in The Country Heart

Title: Alice in The Country of Hearts by QuinRose, Soumei
Media: Paperback: 3 volumes
Rating 4 out of 5
Recommendation:  I would recommend this manga to anyone who enjoys not only manga, but those who enjoy Alice in Wonderland.  Those who like a good storyline and a different look at a classic tale.
We all know the story of Alice's adventures in wonderland, this manga series is a different take on that tale.  In this rendition, Alice is dragged into Wonderland by the White Rabbit, who turns into a handsome man once the enter the rabbit hole.  Alice enters a world where men fawn all over her, and eventually fall in love with her.  Wonderland is split into different kingdoms; all of which are at war with each other.  Blood Dupre (Mad Hatter) basically runs the mafia and owns a third of the kingdom.  another third is controlled by Vivaldi (the red queen), and the last third is controlled by Mary Gowland's amusement park.  Right in the middle is a neutral zone which houses a watchtower where Julius; the clockmaker resides.   The characters are divided into two categories: those with duties and those without.  Those with duties have names and faces.  While the latter does not and when they perish, they turn into clocks.  This rendition of the classic tale has several darker undertones along with the high spirited fun of White Rabbit trying to pursue Alice.
 I have always loved Alice in Wonderland and all the renditions of the tale.  Alice In the Country of Hearts has become one of my favorite renditions.  It took the tale and made it into something new.  The only elements that are the same is Alice going down a rabbit hole and the characters.  After that, it becomes a whole new story.  Not much is revealed in the first volume, but after reading the whole series everything falls together.  The characters are more violent than the traditional characters, I mean Mad Hatter is a mafia boss.  Throughout the series we see the classic characters as well as some new ones like Nightmare, Ace, and the Julius the clockmaker.  Each character becomes their own personality and readers become to loving every one of them.

One interesting element is that Peter White (White Rabbit) speaks in rhymes through the series.  I wonder if it gives him a more Wonderland feel even though none of the other characters have a quirk like that.  The Tweedles consistently refer to Alice as "Lady,"  it seems a little odd and  I would assume they would refer to her as something other than "lady."  I believe it reflects the Japanese word of "one san,"  but it does not come across as intended if that is the case. 

The series is based off of a dating simulation game which is an interesting concept in itself.  Some say the series is confusing if you don't already know the background from the game, but I didn't find that to be the case.  I highly enjoyed this series and cannot wait to continue with Alice in the Country of Clover.  Lets see where this story takes us!

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