Title: Death Note Vol. 2: Confluence
Author: Tsugumi Ohba
Artist: Takeshi Obata
Series: Death Note Vol. 2
Genre: Supernatural thriller manga
Source: Public Library
Pub. Year: 2003
Purchase: Amz/ B&N/ TBD
Blurb from Amazon:
Light Yagami is an ace student with great prospects – and he’s bored out of his mind. But all that changes when he finds the Death Note, a notebook dropped by a rogue Shinigami death god. Any human whose name is written in the notebook dies, and now Light has vowed to use the power of the Death Note to rid the world of evil. But when criminals begin dropping dead, the authorities send the legendary detective L to track down the killer. With L hot on his heels, will Light lose sight of his noble goal…or his life? Light thinks he’s put an end to his troubles with the FBI – by using the Death Note to kill off the FBI agents working the case in Japan! But one of the agents has a fiancee who used to work in the Bureau, and now she’s uncovered information that could lead to Light’s capture. To make matters worse, L has emerged from the shadows to work directly with the task force headed by Light’s father. With people pursuing him from every direction, will Light get caught in the conflux?
Random: I love how I know what is going to happen yet it still as exciting as the first time I saw the anime.
An excellent continuation of the first volume and more intense than the last one. It is not as philosophical as the first because the manga is moving forward with the investigation into Kira.
The character cast is still the same with the added addition of Naomi Misora, the fiancé of Raye Penber. Raye and Naomi played an interesting part in this volume because Light ends up using both of them.
There are three main events in this volume. The first deals with Raye Penber and the FBI. The previous volume allowed Light to gain access to Raye’s name which is crucial if he wants to kills someone. Raye introduces the reader to Naomi whom he has a condescending attitude for. He is like “Be a housewife only, you can’t be a housewife and agent and don’t intervene with my case.” What a little chauvinistic man. We learn through a flashback how Light tricks Raye into writing down the names of the agents and later kills all of them. Light made sure that L could not track him to a specific agent but Light dealing with Naomi gave him away in the end.
Naomi comes into the picture because she is a former FBI agent and believes that Kira killed Raye so she wants to try to bring him down as well. She is a very smart person who figures out more about Kira’s methods of killing which places Light in danger if she can get the information to Kira Task Force. This leads to the most intense cat-and-mouse game ever… at least on Light’s part. It is so intense because he is desperately trying to gain access to her real name and how he convinces her, it’s pretty awesome. At the same time, I feel like Naomi was underused. She is a smart and strong woman and Light just kills her because she is a threat (which I understand) but there is no strong women in this series. I wish she had a longer or a more important role other than to make Light feel threatened. I really liked her character.
L or Ryuzaki as he would like to be called by the Kira Task Force is now dealing face to face with the task force. He is extremely logical and is well-prepared with neat gadgets like GPS belts for the task force. Naomi’s disappearance tips L that Kira had contact with Raye Penber because he believes that Naomi would never have committed suicide over Raye’s death. It leads to Ryuzaki placing cameras on the two families that Penber was investigating; the Deputy Director General and Detective Superintendent Yagami (Light’s father and head of the Kira Task Force). The cameras showed just how paranoid (or cautious, take your pick) Light truly is. Having little tricks that show if anyone enters his room.
The artwork is fantastic. It’s the same as in the previous manga. Light still has a somewhat innocence face. Ryuzaki looks childish in certain pages which hides his real age.
My favorite part of the volume is Ryuk panicking over the loss of his apples because apples are like cigarettes, very addicting. He is like “I’m not on your side but I will help you because I need apples.” Best source of motivation. I also did not know that he likes to play Mario Golf, that is so random that it is awesome.
Overall, this is a 5 Black Butterfly rating because it continues the excitement of the first manga and it is just as intense. Ryuk and Light are still my favorite characters.
79th in the 150+ Reading Challenge
Also qualifies for: Serial Killer, TV Addict, Second in a Series, M/GN/VG
Blurb from Amazon:
Light Yagami is an ace student with great prospects – and bored out of his mind! But all that changes when he finds the Death Note, and notebook dropped by a rougue shinigami death god. Any human whose name is written in the notebook dies, and now Light has vowed to use the power of the Death Note to rid the world of evil. But when criminals begin dropping dead, the authorities send the legendary detective L to track down the killer. With L hot on his heels, will Light lose sight of his noble goal… or his life?
I love the Death Note anime so I had to read the manga that inspired it. I have to say, the anime stuck fairly close to the first volume of the manga.
Light Yagami finds a death note and starts using it to kill criminals of the world. He believes the world is “rotten place” so why not clean it up by getting rid of people who are guilty of committing crimes. His logic makes sense (at least it did to me). It also makes sense that he would do start killing people. His father is the commissioner of the NPA which is similar to the FBI so he is knowledgeable of the criminal system and how faulty it can be at times. In Light’s mind, he is not doing anything wrong; rather he is fighting for justice.
Light is an intelligent teenager. It shows in how gains access to his father’s computer, hence, why he knows the privileged information that only the NPA knows. He changes his tactics (not the method of killing) in order to get L to suspect the NPA of leaking information and L falls for it. Light goes out of his way to create a safe place for the death note. He creates a safe that will light up on fire if anyone tries to force their way in. He is calculating in how he outsmarts Raye in order to obtain his name because a name and a face are necessary to kill someone. If you don’t have one or the other, that person will not die. This fact was proven when L confronted Kira in the televised event.
The manga is fast paced. I think it cover about 4 episodes of the anime in one volume. Light wants the world to know that there is someone out there judging people for their crimes so he just kills people by heart attacks. The heart attacks become his signature move. The world ends up calling him “Kira” which is “killer” (that is not translation, Kira doesn’t mean killer, it just sounds like killer). Kira ends up confronting “L”, the world greatest detective who figures out Kira in Japan by broadcasting specific television events. It’s intense in the anime and in the manga (even if I knew what was coming). Raye Penber of the FBI is also introduced in the manga. Kira plants the seed of suspicion between the NPA and L so L has the FBI investigate the families of the officers.
Let’s talk art style because when it comes to manga, art is crucial. It was so strange to see Light as innocent face teenager when he first started using the death note. (In my head, he is always appears as he did in the final episode of the anime; manic and egoistical). I didn’t really care for the art. It wasn’t as dark as I expected it to be considering the subject matter. It was fairly light and soft except when it came to Ryuk, he was drawn with hard edges. It was still pretty good in bringing detail in to the pages. I like the fact that the rules of the death note are used as dividers between chapters. The basic rule is that a person whose name is written down will die of a heart attack in 40 seconds.
5 butterflies it receives from me. The concept if fantastic, the ideas spouted by Light and L make sense, and the storyline is pretty great.
26 in the 150+ Reading Challenge
Also qualifies for: First in a Series, M/G/V Challenge, Serial Killer, TV Addict,
Blurb from Amazon:
It is a boiling hot Boston summer. Adding to the city’s woes is a series of shocking crimes, in which wealthy men are made to watch while their wives are brutalized. A sadistic demand that ends in abduction and death.
The pattern suggests one man: serial killer Warren Hoyt, recently removed from the city’s streets. Police can only assume an acolyte is at large, a maniac basing his attacks on the twisted medical techniques of the madman he so admires. At least that’s what Detective Jane Rizzoli thinks. Forced again to confront the killer who scarred her—literally and figuratively—she is determined to finally end Hoyt’s awful influence . . . even if it means receiving more resistance from her all-male homicide squad.
But Rizzoli isn’t counting on the U.S. government’s sudden interest. Or on meeting Special Agent Gabriel Dean, who knows more than he will tell. Most of all, she isn’t counting on becoming a target herself, once Hoyt is suddenly free, joining his mysterious blood brother in a vicious vendetta. . . .
Thought to consider: Read for the emotions instead of the serial killer
The second book in the Rizzoli and Isles series doesn’t disappoint very much. We are introduce to more characters that appeared in the TV show and a love interest for Rizzoli. The same serial killer, Warren Hoyt, is back to torment our main character and company. His perspective is still creepy.
This book introduces Dr. Maura Isles or also known as Queen of the Death. I was looking forward to her appearance but she is not like in the TV show because she doesn’t have the camaraderie with Rizzoli yet. Detective Korsak comes into the picture as well. Gerristen constantly reminds the reader that he is overweight. Rizzoli constantly describes him as greasy, sweaty, plus with unhealthy coffee habits. I’m not sure if I’m fond of the repetition of him being overweight.
Let’s talk serial killer. In this segment, Hoyt and unknown serial killer team up (after Hoyt escapes from prison) and attacked women. Technically, they only killed one woman together but nonetheless, proceed to play psychological games with Rizzoli. I personally like the in-deep analysis behind Rizzoli. It makes her more human than in the first book. The Surgeon was about Rizzoli proving her worth in a male-dominated business whereas this book focuses on the scars she obtained from Hoyt and how it affects her life. I find this to be an important step because events leave fragments in people and it is important to acknowledge that those memories change our way of thinking or perspective of life.
There was this emphasis on portraying Rizzoli’s vulnerabilities as a woman in terms of her family and her job. Her family considers her the black sheep in the family which is quite sad. She performs her duty as a daughter yet it is the absentee male son that her family prefers. It is really hurtful and adds to the complexity that is Jane Rizzoli. Her family life isn’t the only place where her vulnerabilities are seen. The FBI agent Gabriel Dean also wants her to admit her status as a victim because she is a woman who was tortured by an unsub. He classified her as a damaged woman and tried to get her to admit this fact in a confrontational and psychological conversation which she obviously did not respond very well. I have to admire that; she will not see herself as a victim even if certain behavior allude to this fact. A romance does develop between them which I like because she deserves some something happiness in her life.
I’m looking forward to seeing how the romantic relationship develops between Rizzoli and Dean or if it is going to drop dead in the next book. With the intro of Dr. Isles, I’m wondering how Isles and Rizzoli become friends outside of the morgue.
I realize that I didn’t emphasize the serial killer so I’ll end with him. I was not expecting all the bureaucracy that this particular unsub brought. It was interesting because it was a war criminal. Very similar to the serial killer in the second book of Dexter. He was definitely not as creepy as the serial killer from Dearly Devoted Dexter though.
21st book in the 150+ Reading Challenge
Also qualifies for: Serial Killer, Second in a Series, Rizzoli & Isles,
Blurb from Amazon:
Life’s tough for Dexter Morgan. It’s not easy being the world’s only serial killer with a conscience, especially when you work for the Miami police. To avoid suspicion, Dexter’s had to slip deep into his disguise: spending time with his girlfriend and her kids, slowly becoming the world’s first serial killing couch potato. Then a particularly nasty psychopath starts cutting a trail through Miami — a killer whose twisted techniques leave even Dexter speechless. When his sister Deborah, a tough-as-nails cop, is drawn into the case, it becomes clear that Dexter will have to do come out of hiding and hunt the monster down. Unless, of course, the killer finds him first. . .
What I will remember: So many words that start with D can be used to describe Dexter
Oh Dexter, how I have miss your sarcastic nature. He is the most charming and funny serial killer I have ever read. The fact that Dexter is the protagonist doesn’t hurt either.
I find this novel more exciting than the first novel. Dexter was much more intelligent in pursuing his killer instincts and is very patient. Dexter is patient when it comes to acquiring the man the Dark Passenger wants to kill, patient in dodging a stalker, and patient to play a domestic man. Dexter shows he can actually track down other serial killers through computers and his careful planning instead of receiving cryptic dream messages (like in the first novel).
In this novel, Dexter isn’t the one doing most of the killing. He is playing a domestic man because Sergeant Doakes is pretty much stalking, oh, I mean, has placed Dexter under surveillance. It forces Dexter to reluctantly spend more with Rita because that is what a normal man does; hangs out with his girlfriend and her children. She places Dexter in a situation he had never imagined before. It’s quite hilarious. Sands further shows Dexter’s gentle side and love for children. He is very caring to Rita’s children and does not want to hurt children (in general). Unfortunately for the readers and fortunately for Dexter, Astor and Cody(Rita’s children) have a bit of a dark side which raises questions about Dexter as a paternal figure. I’m looking forward to learning about Henry’s rules more in depth since Dexter is going to be teaching them soon.
Dr. Danco is one creepy serial killer. He removes the eyelids of his victims and places them in front of a mirror so the victim can see every injury that happens to his body. Twisted is all I have to say about that. He then proceeds to remove body limbs. And what is worst is how he chooses in what order to remove them. I will never be able to look at this particular children’s game the same. But it is very interesting that Dr. Danco chose this game. Let’s just say, the creepy factor is very high.
My one issue with this novel is the use of FBI agent Kyle Chutsky. I think he was created solely to be torture by Dr. Danco. He serves no purpose (that I can see). He doesn’t provide Dexter with important information; Dexter figure out most of the information by himself and he had Sergeant Doakes fill in the blank spots. All the agent did was buy crack, fall for Debbie and get mutilated by the good doctor. He didn’t even contribute to the capture of the doctor. He is literally the most useless agent I have ever seen. I don’t know if this was Sands intention but this agent was just design to be a victim. Even if he was the love interest of Debbie and accidentally cause Dexter to become engaged (oops, spoiler). I suppose he was socially useful but not investigation useful.
Great dimensions to the personality of Dexter, sarcastic wit, terrifying serial killer and a useless FBI agent is what this novels brings. I love the sarcastic tone of this book, it’s just too funny.
18th book in the 150+ Reading Challenge
Also qualifies for: Serial Killer, Second in a Series, Cupcake War
A serial killer is on the loose in Boston. The victims are killed in a particularly nasty way: cut with a scalpel on the stomach, the intestines and uterus removed, and then the throat slashed. The killer obviously has medical knowledge and has been dubbed “the Surgeon” by the media. Detective Thomas Moore and his partner Rizzoli of the Boston Homicide Unit have discovered something that makes this case even more chilling.
Years ago in Savannah a serial killer murdered in exactly the same way. He was finally stopped by his last victim, who shot him as he tried to cut her. That last victim is Dr. Catherine Cordell, who now works as a cardiac surgeon at one of Boston’s prestigious hospitals. As the murders continue, it becomes obvious that the killer is drawing closer and closer to Dr. Cordell, who is becoming so frightened that she is virtually unable to function.
But she is the only person who can help the police catch this copycat killer. Or is it a copycat? To complicate matters even further, Detective Moore, often referred to as Saint Thomas as he continues to mourn the loss of his wife, is getting emotionally involved with the doctor.
What I will remember: Women’s insecurity in a male dominated world
I’m a fan of the TV show, Rizzoli and Isles, so I decided to pick up the first book in the series. I was concerned at first because the blurb let me to believe that Detective Moore was the main character and Rizzoli would be a minor character. Turns out, this is not the case and like Dexter, it doesn’t disappoint much.
I really enjoyed the duality in the book. Throughout this book, we switched perspectives from Detective Moore and Detective Rizzoli while maintaining the third perspective without confusion. We can see the internal battles that they have. Moore dealing with the fact that he is crossing the line with Dr. Catherine Cordell (witness) and Rizzoli struggling being the only woman in a male profession where the men don’t care for her opinion. I liked her perspective more than Moore’s because I can relate to her and see where her insecurities come from.
I did generally like almost everything about this book but what I didn’t like was Dr. Catherine Cordell. She was the one the unsub wanted all along as she is vital to the book. I dislike her character, she was just really cold to me. I do understand it has to do with her past, I’m sympathetic to her and I admired her because her because she is a survivor. I just can’t relate to her. That being said, Gerristen, did an excellent job portraying Catherine’s inner turmoil.
Rizzoli was not what I expected. In the show, she is more likeable and has more respect from the men. In the book, she was cold at times and constantly complained about being a woman in a male profession. It almost felt like she did not like being a woman because it was affecting her job. I hate that because she is falling into the belief that being a woman is a hindrance to her job and as a woman, she should strive to break those misconceptions (or at least not accept it). There will always be gender inequality in the work force but we shouldn’t promote it. Rizzoli has image-problems as well as acceptance problems which make her a complicated character.
Gerristen really let the unsub/serial killer evolve and it shows. She showed how he became more confident with each kill and inventive as well. The parts of the unsub speaking are creepy but well done. It does bother me that there is no background history on how came to be. Gerristen implies through the book that he was simply born to be a serial killer and I disagree. No one is born to be a serial killer, they are created. Still, her serial killer was fleshed out.
Being a fan of Dexter and Thomas Harris’s Hannibal series plus Criminal Minds, I couldn’t help but joining this challenge.
Details: January 1, 2012 to December 31, 2012
Hosted by: Tea Time with Marce
There are no levels but I will attempt to at least read one book per month so 12 books. I tend to like reading crime thrillers so I may actually surpassed this number. However, with all the unique challenges I’m going for, 12 might be a good number.
Meet Dexter Morgan, a polite wolf in sheep’s clothing. He’s handsome and charming, but something in his past has made him abide by a different set of rules. He’s a serial killer whose one golden rule makes him immensely likeable: he only kills bad people. And his job as a blood splatter expert for the Miami police department puts him in the perfect position to identify his victims. But when a series of brutal murders bearing a striking similarity to his own style start turning up, Dexter is caught between being flattered and being frightened — of himself or some other fiend.
What I will remember: Dark humor that hits the mark.
I am a huge fan of the TV show, Dexter, so I really wanted to read the book that started it all. And I have not been disappointed. It is a great book that just needed a tighter finale. Nonetheless, a great sarcastic, dark humor infused book. We all know Dexter is a sociopath and he is a serial killer that is very charming with his quick wit that hides his true nature.
I find this book really interesting because it is entirely from the perspective of a serial killer instead of the (insert any government agency name here) agent that is trying to catch him. I say “him” because most serial killers tend to be men and most authors write serial killers as men. A woman is quite capable of being a serial killer as well. Since it’s from Dexter’s point of view, we are invested in him not being captured because he is the main character and without him, there is no book. Technically, as readers, we are on the wrong side of the law because we don’t want him to get caught. His sarcastic thoughts are very entertaining which make him charming. I love that we are the wrong side of the law because it’s refreshing for me and it’s reality. The fact is not all serial killers are caught and there is no reason why we shouldn’t read about it.
As the blurb says, someone is copying Dexter’s method of killing and Dexter is very interested in finding out who he is. The dilemma comes when he doesn’t know whether to turn the serial killer into the police or help him which is one of the main conflicts of the book. Dexter is fighting what he is, a serial killer, and what he portrays himself to be, a regular man. Lindsay does a great job of portraying the inner turmoil Dexter feels especially when his adopted family comes into play. For a serial killer who is not supposed to feel as much, he feels a lot because he is confined by the laws of Henry, who helped him control his Dark Passenger. The laws of Henry have helped keep Dexter under the police radar but he has a moment of doubt that is really thrilling.
The one problem I have with this book is the ending. It is tied up in three pages and it’s confusing at first plus it doesn’t help that details are left out. The details that are left out are implied in a way by what happened in the previous chapter. It still leaves a sense of confusion because it is up to the readers to figure out what truly happen. It ends with a funeral, I will tell you that. I’m pretty sure I understand what happened after reading it a few times. So, that’s my advice on the ending.