August 1, 2015
Seyoung Kim – Netcomics – 2015 – 6+ volumes
NETCOMICS CAME BACK! I am so happy! Right now, they updated their site with some new titles, and have several paperbacks solicited for release (although Give to the Heart by Wann is the only one I can find right now). I’m most interested in Behind Story, and maybe a couple others… looks like the updates are regular again, and I’m so excited!
I generally enjoyed Netcomics series. They specialize in Korean manhwa, and introduced me to Sooyeon Won, which I will forever be grateful for (hoping Full House comes back on the schedule). Their BL in particular was usually quirky, interesting, and great.
Alas though, my last Seyoung Kim series was not great. The only other series I’ve read by her is Boy Princess, which… apparently at the time, I had a hard time telling the characters apart. But this is a 13+ BL title about vampires, so it’s hitting some modern buttons. I hope it does well.
I was a little disappointed the set-up was similar to Boy Princess. A vampire takes the blood of Sooho, because it’s the only blood he’s found that tastes good. After sneaking in and taking some samples for himself, and some back and forth between Sooho and the vampire, the vampire manages to spirit Sooho away to his magical realm. When Sooho gets there, he learns that the vampire thinks he’s a woman, and he must keep up this ruse, because the vampire also hates men violently and will kill him if he finds out. In Boy Princess, the main character’s sister runs away, and he has to pretend to be her and wed her husband in his place, or something along those lines.
It helps that Seyoung Kim draws pretty characters. This series is helped immensely because I can tell Sooho and the vampire apart, and the third character in the fantasy realm is a little dragon. It was occasionally hard to tell Sooho and his best friend apart in the early chapters, though.
Sooho’s a depressing character. His parents leave him with barely enough money to survive while they wander around trying out various silly ways to make money. Sooho lives by himself in a cheap apartment that he could lose at any time, and can’t really afford heat, food, etc. I enjoyed the fact that one of his hardships was that his TV didn’t have a remote (mine doesn’t either).
He has a best friend at school who worries about him, but Sooho doesn’t want to accept handouts. Because of his poor diet, when he starts getting his blood stolen he gets really sick, and the friend genuinely starts to worry. Sooho interrupts the vampire one night, and thinking he’s hallucinating the man in his bedroom, begs his friend to let him sleep over. The vampire shows up and tries to kill the friend, and Sooho agrees to go with him if he spares the friend’s life.
Sooho doesn’t mind being in the vampire realm because he gets fed, and the servant pays him to keep his mouth shut about being a man.
I’m not sure where this is going next. The vampire is a king, so we may wind up investigating his realm. It’s not at all romantic (though it’s getting there, and it’s close enough to earn my BL tag), and likely won’t get super lovey-dovey since it’s only 13+. Sooho’s the best part of this story, but more because he’s interesting than because I love him as a character just yet. But I’m going to keep reading, and buying, because I really hope Netcomics can get back on its feet and begin publishing series again. I miss reading manhwa.
Gasp! Give to the Heart by Wann came out last year, and already has three volumes out! I need to get on that one, too!