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Book Title: ェザ 破壊創造者 1|
The author of the book: Fuyumi Soryo
Date of issue: October 23rd 2006
ISBN 13: 9784063722017
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 851 KB
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Reader ratings: 7.9
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I have one question: Where the devil was this when I was desperately looking for a decent novel on the Borgias years ago and finding only rubbish?!
In France, untranslated, that's where! Because the "wonderful" Anglo editorials tend to ignore masterpieces in other languages if they're not pop-culture mainstays (and even when they are), and leave it to the industrious Franco-Belgian publishers to pump out real beauties from their native creators as well as from Asian talents. That's why you have to look into their catalogues to find historical fiction in comics and graphic novel formats. I feel sorry for those who don't speak French, and am grateful that I kept my French workable enough to read without a problem.
Now, on to the novel. This tells the story of the most infamous Borgia of them all, but before you get ideas into your head, let me tell you that you've first to kick François Arnaud's hot Cesare out of your headcanon. Yes, I know that's one huge sacrifice to ask. But do yourself a favour and forget it for the sake of enjoying this rendition, yes?
Because this shows Cesare like you've not seen him before. This is not the power-hungry bastard who pines so soulfully for his sister Lucrezia and gets everyone killed because he wanna. Oh, I am sure he'll be a bit of a bastard ahead, that Lucrezia might possibly pop in and suspect that he'll get someone killed eventually, but . . . by the time that rolls in, you'll already be firmly on his side, and whatever Fuyumi Soryo throws at you won't be as atrocious as that Cesare from a certain show I might name, or as Kate Quinn and dozens of other writers have portrayed him.
This Cesare is a young man, likely in his late teens, and hitherto not yet touched by the poisonous politics of the Renaissance noble and papal courts. He's a carefree student at the Università della Sapienza in the Italian city of Pisa, a brilliant student albeit fond of skipping classes, and the leader of the Spanish associaction, a sort of fraternity/student welfare mix, where he meets our narrator, Angelo da Canossa.
He is the grandson of a stonemason whom Lorenzo de' Medici appreciates for his skills, so as reward he pays for the young man to study at the same university where his son Giovanni is too. Young Angelo is very naïve and clumsy, and too frank for his own good. This frankness and his ignorance of the factions and etiquette at the university leads him to unknowingly humiliate Giovanni de' Medici by contradicting his arguments in class debate and getting praise for it, and in order to teach him his place, de' Medici plays a dangerous prank on him from which Cesare saves him just in time. But poor Angelo's troubles don't end there, he keeps putting his foot in his mouth and offending the nobles out of ignorance and excess of sincerity, and that'll eventually result in forming a close friendship with Cesare and his right hand Michelotto, who are the only ones to bother to help and tutor him on the realities of student life and city politics.
I liked the dynamics between commoner boy and noble boy, how well their respective personalities fit together. Cesare is clever and ambitious, and he feels attracted to Angelo for his naïveté, that wide-eyed country boy innocence and faith that the son of a Borgia can never afford to possess but craves. Michelotto is loyal to the bitter end and provides Cesare with much needed companionship, but he's a worldly young man and not exactly pure-hearted, so Angelo is the perfect complement. At least for now, because it looks like Cesare is going to become his political tutor and open Angelo's eyes to the crude reality.
I'm definitely going to follow this graphic novel, it's quite worth the read! Oh, and did I mention the art is beautiful? It is, very high quality and with clear lines; and the artist does seem to have researched Renaissance cities and buildings well.
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Read information about the authorFuyumi Soryo (惣領 冬実 Sōryō Fuyumi?, born January 6, 1959) is a Japanese manga artist from Beppu, Oita, Japan. She is a graduate of the Oita prefectural Geijutsu Midorigaoka High School.
She was born into the home of a master of the Kanze school of Noh. In her childhood she liked to draw pictures of horses and things but had no special interest in manga. While enrolled in fashion college, she happened across Shogakukan's Rookie of the Year Contest and applied to raise money for the Sōen fashion contest. There she received an honorable mention, and debuted with "Sunspot Visitor" (Hidamari no hōmonsha) published in the April 1982 edition of Bessatsu Shōjo Comic (now Bestucomi).
Her works translated into English include Mars and Eternal Sabbath. In 1988, she was awarded the Shogakukan Manga Award for shōjo manga for Boyfriend. Her current manga series is Cesare which centers around the infamous Borgia family of the Italian Renaissance and Cesare Borgia himself.
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