PurplyCookie's Reviews > Candy Candy, Vol. 8

Candy Candy, Vol. 8 by Kyoko Mizuki
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Aug 11, 12

bookshelves: read-growing-up, manga, young-adult, coming-of-age, manga-series
Read on August 11, 2012, read count: 1

The ”Candy Candy” manga is a "slice of life story" in the shōjo genre. While the protagonist experiences love in the series, the recurring story arc in the series is Candy's love for Pony's Home, a place where she constantly returns to when life deals her great injustices or trials. It is here where the story begins, and the story ends. The plot can be divided into seven arcs. The first arc deals with the first ten years of her life at the orphanage, coping with the demands of her first foster home and resolving her living circumstances into a happier situation.

”Pony's Home and The Hilltop Prince”
The first ten years of her life, the orphan Candice White grows up at the orphanage Pony's Home, together with Annie who was found on the same day as Candy. The two girls are best friends, regarding each other as sisters. In order to avoid being separated they boycott any visit from people who hope to adopt a child there. The adoption of the slightly older Tom by the rich cattle farmer Steve though, feeds Annie's growing desire to have parents of her own.

Once felt, Annie's need cannot be denied any more when the two girls spend a day at the Brighton hunting estate, after Mr. Brighton rescued the two girls from drowning. The two girls differ not only in character with Candy being the tomboy, but they have different needs as well. Candy is not just bound to Annie. She loves and regards Pony's Home as her true home and the two women that run the place, Miss Pony and Sister Mary, as her parents. Mrs. Brighton chooses to adopt Annie but does not wish her social circle to learn she grew up in Pony's Home. This forces Annie to break all ties with Pony's Home and Candy to promise never to reveal Annie's secret.

The loss of Annie's friendship breaks Candy's heart and she tries to find solace on the hilltop near Pony's Home. A mysterious prince in kilt and playing bagpipes manages to cheer her up, but disappears into thin air as quickly as he appeared, only leaving a pendant with a family sign as evidence that he exists. When the steward of the rich Leagan family visits Pony's Home to inform Miss Pony and Sister Mary that his employer is prospecting for a girl that could be a playmate for his daughter, Candy instantly volunteers for it, because the Leagan car carries the same symbol as the pendant of Candy's hilltop prince. When she learns that the Leagans live in Lakewood, which is near to Jasper where Annie lives, Candy's mind is made up.

But life at Lakewood is not what Candy envisioned. The two spoiled Leagan children, Eliza and Neil, pester Candy from day one in the hope to chase her off back to where she came from. Their mother who was against the idea in the first place does nothing to stop the pestering. And while Mr. Leagan knows Candy's worth and questions his children's stories, he is more absent than present. Before long, Candy is downgraded from Eliza's playmate to servant, and moved from the attic into the barn.

While Candy has every reason and opportunity to run away and return to Pony's Home, she opts to stay, because she believes her hilltop prince to live in the neighboring estate of the Ardley family. She meets Anthony Brown in almost similar mysterious circumstances in front of the estate's closed rose gates that carry the same symbol as her pendant. Although he is Eliza's favorite, Anthony prefers Candy's company and even grows a new type of rose for her birthday which he names "Sweet Candy". Anthony has two charming cousins who often help Candy: the Cornwell brothers Archibald and inventor Alistear. Candy also finds a friend in the maidservant Dorothy and the vagabond Albert. While Candy is under the initial impression that Anthony actually is the hilltop prince, she soon learns he cannot be: he has never been to Pony's Hill and he met Candy for the first time at the gates of his late mother's rose garden.

As the child romance between Candy and Anthony blooms, Eliza's attempts to rid herself of Candy become more drastic. Neil frames Candy and makes her out to be a thief. As a consequence, Candy is sent packing as a manual laborer to Mexico. Neither Anthony, the Cornwell brothers, Albert or Dorothy can prevent Candy from leaving. Before getting to the intended destination, however, Candy ends up being kidnapped in Texas. Though she is richly taken care of by her kidnappers, Candy fears she will be trafficked and sold to childless Europeans. Not wanting to put anymore distance between herself and Anthony, she manages to escape in New Orleans and returns to Lakewood by freight train. There she learns that her kidnapper was an employee of a benefactor she has never met: grandfather William Ardley. Anthony, Archibald and Alistair had written him letters, pleading him to adopt Candy in order to save her from a harsh fate.

Candy feels as if she lives in a dream: a rich life at the Ardley home, together with Anthony, Archibald and Alistair. Eliza and Neil cannot hurt her anymore. And even the severe Ardley matriarch, great-aunt Elroy, eventually warms a little to Candy. But Anthony is envious of this mysterious hilltop prince who stole Candy's heart before he ever met her. He fears Candy only likes him because he looks like him. Candy manages to appease him by stating she does not care anymore who the hilltop prince might be and that, yes even if they might be twins in looks, she loves the fourteen year old Anthony because he is Anthony. After their first romantic date in town, nothing seems to stand in Candy's way to live a happily ever after from her twelve years on. Anthony even manages to figure out who the hilltop prince must have been. But before he can explain to Candy during a fox hunt, he dies in an unfortunate accident after a fall from his horse.

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Book Details:

Title Candy Candy Vol. 8
Author Kyoko Mizuk & Yumiko Igarashi
Reviewed By Purplycookie

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