Article first published as Manga Review: A Bride’s Story Volume Three by Kaoru Mori on Blogcritics.
A Bride’s Story Volume Three is a manga by Kaoru Mori, and it was published in North America by Yen Press in 2012. I don’t see a rating printed anywhere on this volume, but I would personally recommend A Bride’s Story to manga readers who are 14 or 15 years of age and older.
While Amir does appear in this volume, the main focus of the story is actually on Mr. Smith, the Englishman who has been traveling through the area, taking notes on the people and their customs for his research. After leaving the village at the end of Volume Two, Mr. Smith comes to another village to try to meet up with his guide in order to continue his research journey.
After arriving at the new village, Mr. Smith’s horse and possessions are stolen. He meets a young woman named Talas, whose horse was also stolen. After their horses and items are recovered, Talas invites Mr. Smith to stay with her and her mother-in-law while he waits for his guide. Mr. Smith accepts the offer.
While staying with Talas, he learns why Talas and her mother-in-law are alone. He also takes some notes as he watches the two women living their daily lives. The story climaxes when a member of the village is out for revenge, and has Mr. Smith arrested as a spy. Luckily, word reaches Amir and her husband, and they are able to come to his rescue. The rest of the volume deals with Mr. Smith and some things he has to wrestle with before he continues on his journey.
At first glance, it seems strange that this volume of A Bride’s Story would focus heavily on Mr. Smith, who is obviously not a bride. However, the title is appropriate for the character of Talas, the young woman Mr. Smith meets. Talas was married to all five sons in her mother-in-law’s family, and each of her husbands were killed in some fashion. And with an element of the plot has to do with marriage, this makes the manga’s title very appropriate for this volume of the series.
Mori’s art style is just as strong in this volume as it was in the previous two volumes, and it’s a major defining feature of the series. One of the standout panels to me is early on in the volume, when Talas is first introduced to the reader. There’s a close-up of her that seems to almost literally leap from the page and grabs the reader’s attention.
A Bride’s Story continues to be a satisfying read, and I can’t wait until I can read the fourth volume of the series.
I wrote this review after reading a copy of A Bride’s Story Volume Three that I checked out through the King County Library System.