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Ontology on the gone!

The Journal of the Lincoln Heights Literary Society
Miscellanea and Ephemeron

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07/21/2008 Archived Entry: "Book review: Vampire Hunter D, vol 6"

Vampire Hunter D Volume 6: Pilgrimage of the Sacred and the Profane
Story by Hideyuki Kikuchi
Art by Yoshitaka Amano
Published by Digital Manga Publishing
ISBN-10:  1595821066
ISBN-13:  9781595821065

Review by Jilly Gee

Within the world of Hideyuki Kikuchi's Vampire Hunter D novels, vampires are more commonly referred to as the Nobility; a more fitting name given their status as former benefactors and saviors to the human race.  Now, however, after years of rebellion by the humans, they are slowly disappearing.  Of course, ordinary humans would not be able to accomplish such a feat by themselves.  This is where the vampire hunters come in; remarkably skilled, they make a career out of hunting and eliminating the Nobility.  One of the most well-known of these hunters is D, for not only is he beautiful and seemingly unstoppable, he is also a dhampir, one of both Nobility and human blood.

D, this time around, takes on an unusual request from a seemingly ordinary lawyer named Thornton:  to cross the Desert of No Return to the town of Barnabas; as incentive, Thornton offers information regarding a person D is particularly interested in.  Unofficially joining him in his journey are Granny Viper, an old woman with extraordinary powers involving sand and great skill involving guns; Bingo, a man who exudes a dangerous aura even while appearing to be in perpetual sleep; Clay, a man wielding a harp that can cause destruction; and Tae, a young woman eighteen years of age, eight of those years having been spent as a captive of the Nobility.

Perhaps due to the larger cast of characters acting as D's companions in Pilgrimage of the Sacred and the Profane, D's amazing skills are not shown off as much as they were in previous novels.  Not that this means the novel lacks action; all the group, save Tae, are fighters to begin with, and while they don't have D's beauty and grace with a sword, they have their own amazing talents to demonstrate.  This makes for rougher, shorter fight sequences that will probably turn off those who enjoy detailed descriptions of D's jumps and sword moves, but a delight to those looking for a different sort of battle.

D may not have as much fighting action going on in this story, but he does let some emotion slip ever so slightly.  Having not shown any such thing before, that I know of anyway, this novel starts making great strides towards revealing the secrets behind D's character and origin.  After all, not only has Tae's unusual situation brought some of the dampir's feelings to the surface, there is the matter of the person Thornton has information on.  Even so, the novel still keeps to its episodic, first-time-reader-friendly format, telling a complete tale of the travelers crossing the desert, the dangers they encounter, and the shocking secrets they keep.

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