This latest new release from TokyoPop may have the longest title of any book on my shelf.

General Information

Title: Trinity Blood: Rage Against The Moons Vol. 1: From the Empire
Author: Sunao Yoshida
Original Publication Date: English prose edition first published April 3, 2007
Official site: http://www.tokyopop.com/trinityblood
ISBN: 159816953X
Cover Price: $7.99 US, $10.49
Buy from: Amazon.com
or Amazon.ca

Premise

In a post-Armageddon future, the human church is waging war against vampires. They have a number of inhuman or superhuman operatives, including robots, and one agent who is a vampire’s natural predator. Numerous innocent bystanders get drawn into the conflict as well.

High Point

Sword Dancer’s introduction.

Low Point

The story is written in modular style, with no real ending. Instead of reading like the first book in a series, it reads like the first few chapters from each of three different books in the same world.

The Scores

This is a fairly original setting, with unusual execution. I give it 5 out of 6.

The editing has a huge impact on the comments that follow, so I’ll discuss it earlier than usual. The execution of the story seems designed for the screen right from the start: important descriptions and details often appear in the after they would have been important, though in a visual medium, the information would have been clear from the start. The major disconnections between the three main plots, which show little sign of being drawn together in this volume, are almost as damaging to the finished collection as the lack of any real conclusion. I really don’t see why the author chose this as the final chapter; it doesn’t seem to be a particularly better place to end the book than any of the chapters that came before it. I give it 3 out of 6.

The imagery suffers from the sequencing problems mantioned above. In addition to that, many characters are known only by description for several appearances before they finally get names. Now, this wouldn’t be a big problem, except almost every character in the book is a tall, thin, young, pretty person, and they are rarely described completely in the first appearance, so it takes effort to determine if this chapter is about the same tall, thin, young, pretty person as the previous chapter. Again, this wouldn’t be an issue in a screen adaptation. I give it 3 out of 6.

The story is in three segments, only one of which is drawn to any kind of closure. I give it 3 out of 6.

The characterization is more useful than the imagery for telling characters apart. Several of the tall, thin, young, pretty people are first introduced as personality-deprived drones getting their first marching orders. Personalities arise in later appearances when those orders are executed, and those personalities become an essential way to differentiate between these characters. This is often good enough to distinguish the tall, thin, young, pretty people before they even get named. I give it 5 out of 6.

The emotional response is mixed. There are several fun and cool scenes, but the serial structure and weak connections between segments makes it hard to care about the book between these individual scenes. I give it 3 out of 6.

Overall, it’s not terrible, and many of these problems would likely be corrected if several books in the series are read as a whole, but this entry doesn’t feel like the right way to divide the story. I’d suggest starting out by watching the animated series, or waiting for a couple of volumes to come out and read together to get a better sense of the overall direction of the series. I give it 3 out of 6.

In total, Trinity Blood: Rage Against the Moons Vol. 1: From The Empire receives 25 out of 42.