Sleepless Volume 2
I was heavily disappointed to hear this wonderful fantasy romance would end after only 11 issues. However, looking on the bright side, that makes for a complete story in two collections, a tidy but not over-committed read. It does mean, though, that events move very quickly in Sleepless volume 2, the second half of the series by Sarah Vaughn and Leila Del Duca.
Poppy is dealing with a number of substantial challenges. With her father no longer king and her status illegitimate, she is being pressured into an arranged marriage with the princess’ cousin. At least her relationship with the princess has become more friendly, although Poppy’s beloved sleepless knight protector is, as the book opens and after major emotional drama from the first volume, asleep.
Things move quickly, with schemes and longing glances and vows of revenge. There’s a good deal of action here, but what I like most is how the creators focus on the personalities as well. Sir Cyrenic, formerly Poppy’s protector, is in a previously unexpected role, as there is no other former sleepless knight. There’s a comfort in doing what you’re supposed to, and his uncertainty at now having to make his own choices was something I could relate to.
This volume does read as abbreviated, as though this astonishing world could have been explored far longer than it was. I was disappointed, for example, that we didn’t see Poppy having to navigate her new role as wife for longer. Having the issues in larger chunks does make it easier to keep up with the various machinations and schemes, although I admit I didn’t recall seeing the villain previously. I wanted more of the various rich cultures and traditions the authors had come up with, and I’ll miss learning more about this world. (The publisher provided a review copy.)