The second volume of Canon cuts off with many mysteries lurking. Volume three starts up at a fast pace, and soon some things are getting explained. In all probability, Canon's strongest point would be its layers of plot and twists. It's one of those stories where you think you know who's good and who's bad...until you read a little further. Then things get murky, with protagonists and antagonists no longer so clear-cut.
At this point, the vampire Canon is still hoping she can become human again. She had been planning to kill the vampire Rod for all the suffering he's caused. However, after Rod cares for her and saves her life, she realizes maybe she's missing a piece of the puzzle. There are wars going on among the vampires, as some are basically deemed more-vampiric-than-thou. Half-breeds and made-vampires (like Canon) are in danger of being killed. Despite her suspicion toward all things bloodsucking, Canon finds herself falling in love with one of these creatures. Unfortunately, she's picked about the worst vampire to fall in love with.
Everything gets explained in the last two volumes. For example, Canon wasn't accidently left alive when her classmates were all killed. As we read, we learn she was chosen for a very specific and powerful reason. Once this is explained, things really fall into place. One of the best things you can find in a manga series is where things are planned out since the beginning, so that it all wraps together and makes sense. Canon is representative of those series. One can tell the mangaka wasn't just making up everything as she went, but had the premise all along.
The story actually finishes itself partway through the fourth volume. After that is a side story called "Tatsumi," which tells more about the vampire Sakaki's past. It gives him more depth, though it doesn't really add to the denouement, which has already taken place. Both volumes three and four also have short extra stories at the end. The story in volume three deals with a ghost; a murder mystery lies in the back of volume four. Either way, these stories remain in the spooky, horror genre.
Canon's a good manga series to read for anyone who likes shojo horror or anyone wanting a storyline that neatly comes together. It has a lot of passion in its pages, and a lot of emotion in its characters. Its job of melding good and bad is additionally interesting, because it keeps the story away from being stereotypical and easily defined. The four books in its series make for an intriguing and gothic read.
-- Danica Davidson