A Bride's Story, Vol. 1
written by Kaoru Mori
Taking place in the Caucasus region in the nineteenth century, Bride’s Story is a sweet-natured and beautifully illustrated manga.
So far there is no central plot, and many of the pages concentrate on easygoing things, like eating pomegranates and making carvings. Amir is a 20-year-old bride who is married to a 12-year-old boy. Some people comment on the age difference, and others comment that Amir is awfully old to be getting married. Amir, however, appears content with her marriage. She doesn’t exactly have a romance going on with her 12-year-old husband, though it’s clear she cares for him.
Her family, meanwhile, has decided they don’t like the marriage and would better benefit marrying Amir to someone else. They attempt to take her back and are ousted by the family Amir has married into. Amir is away when this happens and unable to speak for herself. The matron of the family she’s married into, however, confronts the men and makes it clear that they will not touch Amir.
For a while this is the only drama in the story, but later Amir’s husband gets a fever and this causes her to panic. Her panic is interesting, and most likely something that ought to come back later in the story, since until then she was cool and confident in everything that she did. She desperately tries to nurse him back to health, even if it means letting her own health suffer.
One aspect that stands out is the fact that Amir is a strong character. The only time she shows fear is when her husband is sick, and besides that she almost seems to be perfect. She often shows off her markswoman skills and is kind to everyone she meets. I’d like to see how she’ll develop in future volumes.
Bride’s Story is slow-moving and mostly without conflict, but it isn’t boring. The artwork is spectacular. Kaoru Mori gives such details on the style of dress, Asian backgrounds and even carpets. One feels authentically taken into the historical world she’s created. Some of her pages and panels don’t have any dialogue and they bring out feelings entirely without words.
Despite the lack of conflict, Bride’s Story is off to a promising start. The artwork alone is reason enough to check it out. Kaoru Mori did an excellent job with her previous manga, Emma, and she uses some of the same techniques in her newest venture.