Reviews

Aug 22, 2008
Xyik (All reviews)
Being the Death Note fan that I am, I searched tirelessly for more Death Note after the anime ended. That included the live action movies, Death Note special and one shot. So you can imagine that I was pretty excited when I found out there was more Death Note out there in the form of ‘Another Note: LABB Murder Cases’. I was practically squealing (grunting if that makes me sound more manly) at the thought and immediately placed this on my plan to read list. Of course, no one told me this was a novel and not a manga so you can say that I was quite surprised when I saw this at my local bookstore.

Story:

The title, Death Note Another Note: The Los Angeles BB Murder Cases was a bit misleading. The entire story itself is in fact, a bit misleading. I immediately dreamt of some kind of back-story in which another human had taken hold of a Death Note prior to the events of the actual story and that it would be some kind of buried, post-Kira incident. It was no such thing. Instead, LABB Murder Cases is in fact more of a detective novel that focuses on nothing more than a not-so-ordinary serial killer who has managed to peak L’s interest. Soon, Naomi Misora is offered to work alongside L in order to solve the case.

The murder cases themselves are quite typical. Naomi Misora and L working together in order to apprehend the murderer is quite typical. All in all, if that was all the story amounted to, this novel would be too typical to carry the name ‘Death Note’ in it. While the first few pages of the novel will interest you, you can expect to be lulled into a bit of a slow investigation at first, only interesting because you are given more of a glimpse at the way Misora thinks and how she meets L for the first time. It does however, soon become interesting as familiar psychological warfare begins. Saying another would spoil it, but be assured that the novel does carry the same psychological manipulation / investigative deductions that Death Note the series carried. The ending the novel sets up is surprising. The way you are misled throughout the novel is done brilliantly. It loses points however, due to some unbelievable aspects of the story and while it is a good story, it lacks the depth and special something a 10/10 would have. 9/10

Characters:

While L of course plays an important role in the novel, he is not in fact, the main character. Instead, the novel gives us a closer look at Naomi Misora prior to the actual story and her relationship with L which is actually quite interesting. Misora who is given such a crucial, albeit short role, in the Death Note series was an interestingly strong character who some might say deserved more. This novel does just that and gives us an excellent look at the Misora’s deductive abilities in addition to her personality which is hidden during the course of the actual series. While in the series we only see Misora as the cool, serious, ex-FBI agent bent on tracking Kira, the novel allows us to see past her serious attire and focus on some of her more human traits.

Furthermore, readers are given a glimpse at Mello as well for he is in fact, the teller, the ‘writer’ and narrator of this story. Not only does this again, give us more insight into a character who meets an end quite quickly, but also gives us a look into the Wammy House, L’s origin, and the way he and the others perceived a future as L’s replacement. 9/10

Overall: I didn’t take much of a look at art because this was a novel. Overall it was an interesting read. It doesn’t have a Death Note in it and there is no Kira seeking to build a utopia, but the psychological / mystery aspects of Death Note are still there. Characters we know from the show are expanded and given a chance to show their true colors in this novel. Finally, the novel builds itself a great climax to end it off and to the casual readers like me who prefer having the answers laid out for them instead of trying to solve them as most mystery fans would do, be ready for a surprise. Death Note Another Note did not need another Death Note to make it a hit. It is a unique experience for Death Note fans, although I would say that only a Death Note fan could understand and enjoy the novel to the extent that I have. My only complaint is that some portions of the story is quite unbelievable and almost ridiculous. 9/10