Shadows House Volume 5 Uses a Whodunit to Focus on Shadows

Shadows House Volume 5 cover of Kate shushing Emilico by the bottom of the stairs while other Shadows stand at the top of the stairs.

Shadows House Volume 5 maintains a lightheartedness even as the themes of enslavement and brainwashing get stronger. Oddly enough, this adds to its compelling tale. So, kind Emilico and her shadow, Kate, move to discover the secrets of Shadows House. The foreboding and worry mix with hope, thanks to many of the characters. The mystery of shadows and soot ensures surprises, ensuring there’s never a dull moment in Shadows House Volume 5

Created by Somato, translated by Taylor Engel, and lettered by Lys Blakeslee, the volume contains Chapters 51 – 62. The Yen Press manga begins with a closer look at Emilico’s friend, Shaun, and his shadow, John. Through this focus, readers get an emphasis on the strength of the drugged coffee all the faces—also known as living dolls—must drink. Character development and relationships build up with the mystery in this volume, and the pace stays consistent throughout.

Shadows House Volume 5 Mixes Hilarity With Danger

There’s still so much unknown about the world outside of the home that is a prison for its residents. When Kate and Emilico realize that living dolls are human beings, that raises more questions, as does the brainwashing. The way the story depicts it gives off Stepford Wives energy. After all, their devotion to the estate resurrects after the dolls consume the drink. In that sense, it’s hard to trust even friends because they might still be under the influence of the coffee. Yet even in the midst of this, there’s time for comedy and frights as coagles run amok, and it’s up to the faces, aka dolls, aka enslaved people, to stop the threat.

Shadows House Volume 5 cover of Kate shushing Emilico by the bottom of the stairs while other Shadows stand at the top of the stairs.
Shadows House Volume 5 cover. Yen Press.

In this volume, there’s intrigue as the star-bearers suspect Kate of fostering dissent and the additional issue of someone else purposely destroying the drugged beverage. Both aspects build excitement and worry, but the best part of this book is introducing the new characters. They don’t force them in, and they have distinct and even hilarious personalities, significantly the inventor. Shadows House Volume 5, additionally, highlights what is becoming increasingly apparent: Emilico is special. Whether it’s her sunny disposition or something more remains inconclusive. 

A Whodunit and a Role Reversal

Now that it’s apparent the dolls are human beings with no recollection of life outside this mansion, the question becomes who or what the shadows are. The claim that the dolls existed to be their faces no longer stands. So Shadows House Volume 5 gives off body-snatcher energy. Where it seemed like shadows influence the dolls, the reverse appears to be true. The end of this mystery is too far out of focus to know where it heads, but this volume, with its blend of worry, laughs, and hope, cements the readers’ curiosity. 

Shadows House Volume 5 maintains a clipped pace while introducing new aspects to the enigma of this mansion and its array of residents. Although there is exposition at times, it’s within the confines of the situation, such as when the coagles run amok. Emilico is usually the focus, but Shadows House Volume 5 allows Kate to shine more and, by extension, other shadows, building characters that matter through laughs and mystery. 

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