Thursday, January 22, 2015

Received: "Miss Don't Touch Me, Vol. 2" by Hubert and Kerascoet

Received: Miss Don't Touch Me, Vol. 2 by Hubert and Kerascoet, 2008 (France) 2010(U.S.), 9781561635924.

Blanche continues to work in the high-end bordello in Paris after Vol. 1.  She is in high demand as the virgin dominatrix. Blanche starting working as a cleaner in the bordello during book one when trying to find her sister's killer. Blanche succeeded at that but is in deep debt to the madam.  The madam's scam is to claim food, lodging, and other expenses against he prostitutes.

When Blanche tries some naive blackmail and fails. She is stuck and unable to leave without the male co-owner tracking her down and putting into sexual slavery in a back-alley whorehouse.  Blanche commiserates with her best bordello pal, a drag queen named Miss Jo. The ladies talk about finding a john who'll take them out of the house.  Miss Jo has some wealthy regulars but their sexual interests are not socially acceptable.

Blanche has a young blonde customer, Antoine, approach her and start a romantic pursuit. Blanche's virginity is well-known and Antoine seems to be taking her purity as a challenge to his seductive power.  He takes her on trips outside the house and introduces her to his friends and his mother. He seems quite proud of upsetting his mother by getting serious with a prostitute.  Blanche and Antoine are photographed and in the society page.

Low-and-behold Blanche's mother shows up.  Mom saw Blanche in the society pages and claims to have deeply missed Blanche. "Oh, my other daughter is dead!?  How awful! Oh, Blanch you must help me find a place to live, clothes to wear, food to eat. Blanche, I will never leave you again. Oh, some more wine please. Oh, look at you, you big handsome man! Blanche leave us."

Things move along. The bordello is better than some other places but still a tough place to work and live. Blanche gets engaged to Antoine but Antoine disappears. Antoine's mother refuses to speak with Blanche. Blanche has another mystery to solve.

Blanche flees the bordello and starts looking for Antoine. Mom finds out Mom is out of town and burgles Mom's mansion, finds a diary, and plans blackmail.  Blanche finds Antoine in a sanitarium.  Antoine admits to being gay and is scheduled for some curative lobotomy.  Blanche loves Antoine. She leaves the hospital thinking the surgery will cure Antoine and he will love her back.

1. Blanche's mother steals from her daughter and anyone else who looks to be a good mark.
2. The wealthy use and abuse the poor.
3. Most everyone sees the prostitutes as property. They pay some cash and figure they can do whatever they like.
4. I looked at my notes from the last book and my comments still stand: I liked the artwork quite a bit; K. uses plenty of color and mixes in plainer, simpler panels with detailed street scenes and extravagantly decorated rooms.
5. Antoine's fate was very upsetting to read about.
6. Mom steals Blanche's money and belongings and skips town.

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