Vampire Knight, volume 2 by Matsuri Hino. I grabbed this manga title off the bookshelf yesterday and devoured it. I know it’s too early to say this but I am really excited about this series. It’s another interesting approach to the traditional vampire story. Also it helps that it’s a bit angsty and dark. In Vampire Knight, vol. 1, we learn that there is a prestigious private school called The Cross Academy that teaches vampires about humans in hopes of a peaceful truce between the two races. The academy is separated into Day Class and Night class students. The Night class students of course are vampires. The Day students as well as some of the staff have no idea whatsoever that they are attending school with the undead. Except for headmaster Cross and the disciplinary committee Guardians Yuki Cross and Zero Kiryu. At sunset, the Day class and Night class run into each other. Yuki and Zero are the Guardians who help maintain the peace between them.
When first introduced, we learned that Yukie was attacked by a rogue vampire 10 years ago. She survived with no memory prior to the attack. She was adopted by the headmaster of the Academy and made Guardian. On that ill-fated day Kaname Kuran , a pure-blood vampire and aristocrat saved her from the attack. Since then the two have been friends. Then there’s Zero who was attacked by a pure-blood vampire that killed his family. Zero hates vampires. Zero also hates himself. His inner torment with himself is just beginning.
The second volume more or less goes into more of Zero’s inner struggle but also explores a little of his past. The author also goes on to explain the different types of vampires that exist in this world. Lineage is really important. You have the pure-blood vampires who are more or less aristocrats and are at the top of the pyramid that defines their class structure. Then there’s the vampires who were formerly human. They are viewed as being at the bottom of this class structure and are considered Level E vampires. Level E vampires are eliminated because of their destructive nature. They are hated by pure-bloods and exterminated by vampire hunters.
I enjoyed this installment and can’t wait to read the rest. What attracts me to this series is that Yuki and Zero have a close relationship and are friends. However, will their friendship survive past Zero’s self-loathing or will things heat up between them? Yuki thinks she can save Zero but can she? Also there’s Kaname Kuran, a pure-blood vampire who is also very interested in Yuki. He knows that Yuki sees him as a polite monster. Can Kuname make her see past that? Things should get interesting as the series progresses. Now onto packaging. The artwork is nicely done. The men are draw beautifully. This series is ongoing with six volumes total but only two are currently released. The dialogue in each panel is legible and easy to follow. Rating for the series is for Older Teens. This manga is worth checking out, B+.