Review: Claymore, Vol. 18

Claymore: Ashes of Lautrec, Vol. 18 (Claymore, #18)Claymore: Ashes of Lautrec, Vol. 18
by Norihiro Yagi

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Claymore, Vol. 18 / 978-1421539355

I'm a very devoted fan of both the Claymore anime and the manga. I love the crisp black-and-white artwork, and while I realize it's not for everyone I personally think it's a perfect style for graphic novels. I find the action easy to follow, and the faces and body language to be surprisingly emotive. The story is complex and compelling, and I'm all in until the series finally finishes. I own this volume as a Nook Book e-book, and I assume it will shortly be ported to other online stores for sale.

Volume 18 provides the following scenes:

Scene 90: The Ashes of Lautrec, Part 1
Scene 91: The Ashes of Lautrec, Part 2
Scene 92: The Ashes of Lautrec, Part 3
Scene 93: The Ashes of Lautrec, Part 4
Scene 94: The Ashes of Lautrec, Part 5
Scene 95: The Ashes of Lautrec, Part 6

Spoilers ahead!

This volume opens with The Destroyer laying waste to the western lands. The Organization studies the creature from afar and wonders how to retrieve it for use in the mainland war. They can't see a way to collect The Destroyer, but they do take into custody a wounded Raki: he has been pierced by the parasitic rods, but has not succumbed to their control.

Cynthia and Yuma come upon a severely wounded Beth, who has been impaled by a parasitic rod and changed completely into an Awakened Being. Priscilla -- who has left Raki seeking the "scent" that had clung to him so long ago -- attacks the Awakened Beth, and Alicia is forced to abandon her fight with Riful in order to save her sister. Priscilla makes short work of both awakened twins, and then destroys Riful.

Clare senses the presence of Priscilla and confronts her; Clare attempts to awaken her body as she did against Rigaldo in the Northern Campaign, but the attempt unexpectedly fails. Clare can only awaken for a moment before her body snaps back to human form. Deneve deduces that Clare has an emotional block against awakening, because she realizes that to do so would be to waste Jean's sacrifice that was made to bring Clare back to human form the first time. Priscilla wounds Clare, and Deneve and Helen attempt to flee while carrying an unconscious Clare.

Meanwhile, Yuma finds that she can synchronize her aura enough to heal Cynthia back from the brink of death, but she is too weak to effectively fight the parasites of The Destroyer. But Number 8 Dietrich arrives, having gathered the unfocused Abyss Feeders in the area and directed them to attack the parasites of The Destroyer.

~ Ana Mardoll


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