Apothecarius Argentum Book 8

Argent, the Royal Apothecary, has left the princess in order to seek a cure for his condition of being a living toxin.

Apothecarius Argentum Book 8 cover
Apothecarius Argentum Book 8
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He’s learned a process that may remove the poisons from his body, but leaving the country has branded him a traitor. Meanwhile, the princess has been traveling around her realm to better know how her subjects live. When the two reunite, the princess is working in the fields, and she’s so distracted — and Argent somewhat changed — that she doesn’t recognize him.

It’s a hoary idea, but somehow it fits right in with the medieval fantasy setting. The writer needs something to keep the two characters apart, now that the “oh, no, our love is forbidden because if we touch, you die” aspect is gone. Now it’s just class differences that separate the two, although those seem minimal when the princess is hanging around at the farm. However, that isn’t the biggest obstacle: The princess is also engaged to the prince of a neighboring country as a means of creating a stronger nation, and her wedding is soon. As the book continues, the early comedy becomes soap opera as various factions plot and scheme to take over during the country’s transition.

There are some nice cliffhangers and reveals that reverse the meaning of previous scenes, and I like the character expressions. The princess, especially, is drawn with a blend of youth, power, and cuteness that wraps up the contradictions of her character well. And her fiance, Prince Lorca, is a surprisingly strong player who’s made me fonder of him than I want to be. I’m not as big a fan of the political machinations that keep wandering into the story, but I guess the characters need something to do while hiding from and figuring out how to handle their feelings. It does set up a potent cliffhanger for the next book, due in June 2010. (The publisher provided a review copy.)

Update: (5/21/10) With the closure of CMX, unfortunately, that cliffhanger will not be resolved. Buyer beware.

6 Comments

  1. [...] on vol. 4 of Antique Bakery (A Library Girl’s Familiar Diversions) Johanna Draper Carlson on vol. 8 of Apothecarius Argentum (Comics Worth Reading) Tangognat on vol. 5 of Aria (Tangognat) Connie on vol. 5 of Arm of Kannon [...]

  2. Wait, what? Argent finds a cure and cures himself? How?! As of vol. 8, there is no long term treatment available for him. Does the author keep the cure a mystery or reveal it at the start of the book? (I love the series. Kudos for reviewing it without spoilers, but hopefully ny question isn’t too much of a spoiler!)

  3. Did we read the same Volume 8? :) Apparently he found out about the cure in V7 (which I haven’t read), and then he starts applying it in V8, to some success.

  4. [...] remains one of my favorite manga titles. I’m also disappointed that I’ll never see Argent and his princess [...]

  5. How terrible! I just got to the end of what I thought was the last volume only to realize that this series has been left incomplete. Sigh…I haven’t been this disappointed since Tokyopop left me hanging on The Queen’s Knight. If Apothecarius Argentum had been fully released over here I’d probably recommend it to shoujo fans with all my heart. But since it’s incomplete with no foreseeable plans of being rescued, I probably won’t recommend it. It’s a lose lose situation for anyone buying this series you either A) wasted your money because you don’t like the series or B) love the series have to remain frustrated that you may never find out what happens

  6. I share your frustration. It’s annoying when there’s only one more book to go, and the series gets cancelled — in this case because the publisher was shut down. I so wanted to see the happy ending with the princess and the poisoner.

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