Dark Prince Volume 1 (Yaoi) Paperback – Nov 29 2007
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From Publishers Weekly
This first of a trilogy is written by the publisher, which isn't unusual from small comic companies—who better knows what suits their vision for their line? By naming the company after the popular boys' love manga genre, Abraham makes clear what audience they're going after. Perhaps that's why this volume is so hardcore. It ships shrink-wrapped due to mature content, and they're not kidding; the first scene features the title character orally pleasuring his brother. The dark prince has been murdering boys because of demands from his demon lover. Instead of being an imaginative figment, that character's real, too, and randy. Other cast members include the jaded ex-wife running the palace brothel and a peasant boy whose stepfather tried to sell him into sexual slavery. (He winds up raped by an aristocrat.) The story is an odd combination of an elaborate fantasy religion and a string of atrocities and fetishes, all illustrated by a new artist. Typical of young creators, Sambre's style is heavy on surface qualities and decorative flourishes while the basics are lacking. No one's three dimensional in either anatomy or approach. The characters are defined only by their sexual purpose. (Nov.)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
While it's true that I got this book because I like yaoi--meaning media features sex between males--what really intrigues me is the story; it's actually pretty cool!
Lowry, a nobleman from Ralstorm, is charged by the king of Cordinia to find out why his son Davon (the "Dark Prince" of the title) is killing young boys whose names start with "A". Meanwhile, we see Davon's dealings with his pagan god, as well as finding out some of what makes the prince so perverse.
If I had any problems with this book it would be that I was a little surprised when what seems to be the central mystery of the books--the reason for Davon's murders--is actually answered for us in this very volume! Perhaps this is going to be a short series? Or is this bit of info not as important to the series as we're originally lead to believe? And of course, even though the audience knows why he's doing it, Lowry is still a long way from finding out. So I'm willing to wait and see how it develops. And speaking of waiting, volume two's not out till April!
Still, there was much about this book I did like. The guys are very pretty, the plot is interesting and more than just ways of getting guys together to have sex. And there is sex in it, so you won't be disappointed on that score.
So, for fans of yaoi who occasionally like to read something that's more than just sex scene after sex scene, I recommend this book!
If I get some nitpicky details wrong it's because this yaoi, like most I have read, is confusing. Prince Lor and Prince Davon are half-brothers (I believe but they could be step brothers) who enjoy having sex . . . with each other. Well, Lor enjoys it. Apparently Davon can no longer become aroused by Lor's touch because he's under some sort of sexual curse that has made him impotent. He still allows Lor to play with him, however, even when his touch makes him vomit. Now that's some true brotherly love there. Davon also has a little quirk that is troublesome to his father. He kills boys that are unlucky enough to have their name begin with the letter A. The King wants Davon to inherit the castle of perversion and rule the peasants but his murderous nature is hard to overlook. He hires a nobleman to spy on Davon and uncover all of his secrets.
And boy, does that man have some strange secrets! I'm not going to spoil this in case you might be dying to read it. I'll just say that some things are revealed as the story goes along that were shocking, sexy and disturbing. Sometimes all three. There is also a side story about a young boy who sacrifices everything to save his sisters that broke my cold heart. The end leaves many questions unanswered so, of course, suckers like me will have to gleefully buy into the entire series and hope for closure.
I could find lots of stuff to complain about here (the Epilogue that is actually a flashback, for starters) but I'd be lying if I said I didn't enjoy gazing at every page featuring the impossibly beautifully characters. Even the demons are stunning. It's hard to look away, even when you know you probably should!