Looking back, looking forward

Erica Friedman gives her picks for the top ten yuri manga of 2006.

At Comics-and-more, Dave Ferraro lists the five worst comics of 2006 and one is a manga: Blood Alone.

At Mangamaniaccafe, Julie posts her wish list for 2007. At Precocious Curmudgeon, David writes about what he would like to see. PopCultureShock blogger Katherine Dacey-Tsuei, who also blogs at Tokyopop as ChunHyang72, runs through her list as well.

Listening for reindeer

We had a busy Christmas Eve with last-minute shopping and a recalcitrant drain to un-clog, but then we got to relax over Indian food with my sister and her family. Nothing like having a bunch of wound-up pre-Christmas children in the house to make you appreciate teenagers!

Anyway, people are still posting so I thought I’d do a quick roundup before the visions of sugarplums start dancing in my head.

Otaku Champloo lists some suggestions for those who want to give the gift of manga.

The Tezuka exhibit that is getting so much attention in Australia will be coming to San Francisco in June.

Attention, aspiring manga-kas: Kodansha is holding a manga competition.

At Deutsche Mangaka, Elae has some updates on anthologies from Schwartzer Turm.

Yaoi Suki (no permalink) notes that an editor at Blu is wondering on their forum if they should charge more and add in some extras.

It’s the battle of the princesses over at One Potato Two.

Broccoli Books has its own MySpace page.

Mark your calendar: Yuricon has announced the guests for its September 2007 “Yurisai” event: manga-ka Rica Takashima, Yuri Monogatari artists Althea Keaton, Beth Malone, and Sergio Aviles, and Shoujoai ni Bouken illustrator Kelli Nicely.

The Daily Yomiuri has a brief article on manga-ka Takehiko Inoue’s basketball scholarship.

The Honolulu Star-Bulletin takes a look at two “magic school” manga, Psychic Academy and Someday’s Dreamers.

Johanna has been busy lately. At Comics Worth Reading, she compares the three versions of Train Man and reviews vol. 1 of Emma, vols. 1 and 2 of Mushashi #9, vol. 1 of Penguin Revolution, vol. 8 of Gals!, vol. 1 of ES (Eternal Sabbath), and the trade paperback edition of the manga-fied Sabrina the Teenage Witch.

At MangaCast, Christian gets a little ahead of the American releases and reviews the Japanese edition of vol. 3 of Emma.

Mangamaniaccafe reviews two Harlequin Pink titles, Three Wishes and My Real Fake Boyfriend, as well as vol. 3 of Boy Princess.

Kethylia looks at vol. 13 of Berserk and vol. 1 of The Great Catsby.

Tangognat is pleasantly surprised by vol. 1 of R.O.D.—Read or Dream.

At Slightly Biased Manga, Connie reviews vol. 3 of Law of Ueki, vols. 12 and 13 of Hanakimi, vol. 11 of DN Angel, vols. 11 and 12 of Dragon Ball, and vol. 4 of Sugar Sugar Rune.

The Star of Malaysia reviews Shojo Beat’s Manga Artist Academy, vol. 1 of Trinity Blood, and vol. 1 of Penguin Revolution.

Locating The Building Opposite

While everyone else was scanning blurry photos of The Beguiling, hoping to catch a glimpse of the elusive number one manga of 2006, The Building Opposite, I decided to take the direct route and e-mailed the company. I got a nice response from Stephen Robson of Fanfare, which should clear up the mystery:

We had scheduled the book as a Spring 2007 release to the mainstream US and will be shipping copies in by the end of January to our distributor.

In the meantime, for those desperate souls, they can either:

1. Learn Spanish quickly :>)

2. Visit their local comic store and order it on Diamond code MAY063123 [for your nearest store call 888-COMIC-BOOK or visit www.comicshoplocator.com]. It will take some weeks for this to arrive – or maybe they will have a copy left!

3. You are welcome to give my email out and I will deal with requests on an individual basis. Please ask that they put THE BUILDING OPPOSITE as the subject so they are not condemned to Spam World forever and a day!!

It truly is a delightful book.

OK, peeps, try your comic store first, but if you run up against a dead end, and you can’t wait until the end of January, e-mail me (address is up on the right) and I’ll forward Stephen’s e-mail. Note that the book was originally published in French, so if you’re a Francophone, you’re in luck. Here is the Amazon page for the French edition, L’Immeuble d’en Face, which is worth a click for the very different cover image. And check out the publisher’s page, which includes some previews.

Look back in manga

I’m thinking about compiling a Top Ten Retrospectives of 2006 list. It looks like there will be plenty to choose from.

Having already shared the books he enjoyed the most, David Welsh also lists the ones that made the biggest impression.

Erica Friedman lists the top ten yuri anime of 2006, several of which are based on new or forthcoming manga.

Everyone’s an expert: At the MangaCast, Ed Chavez wants to know your picks for best manga of 2006—and what you want to see in 2007.

Friday morning roundup

Literary analysis of Train Man? Not quite, but Stephanie Folse looks at all three in her Tokyopop column to compare the way different artists handle the same story.

Shaenon Garrity treats us to another overlooked manga festival, this one about Sexy Voice and Robo.

ComiPress translates an interview with manga-ka Nariko Enomoto, creator of Sentiment no Kisetsu, a manga about the real lives of schoolgirls.

One blog that I really enjoy, although I seldom link to it, is One Potato Two, by Satsuma, a Japanese translator. Satsuma is currently working on vol. 3 of Innocent W, which is that rare manga about which I have absolutely nothing good to say. (My short take: It’s the manga equivalent of a splatter movie.) Satsuma’s posts have given me a bit more insight, though, and today’s post recommends some other work by Kei Kusunoki that look kind of interesting. Of course, they are in Japanese… Anyway, Satsuma’s blog is a good daily read if you’re curious about the translation process and what the near future holds, manga-wise.

Reviews: Kethylia enjoys Kingdom Hearts, despite poor production values and lackluster subplots. At Active Anime, Holly Ellingwood looks at vol. 20 of Please Save My Earth, a series that is almost complete. Anime on DVD’s Julie Rosato reviews Lovely Sick, a DramaQueen title. Dave Ferraro of Comics-and-more has good things to say about Ode to Kirihito. Mangamaniaccafe severely pans Because I’m A Boy. If you’ve been wondering about Strawberry Marshmallow, Okazu has reviews of vol. 1 (by guest reviewer Sean Gaffney) and vol. 2 (by resident blogger Erica Friedman). At Slightly Biased Manga, Connie has posted a flurry of reviews of Boogiepop Doesn’t Laugh, Hanakimi, and DN Angel.

Retrospectives in hindsight

Well, Kai-Ming Cha got everyone talking—on two continents, apparently—with her list of the top ten manga and top five manwha of 2006.

Tangognat finds the PW list “a bit odd” and shares a few of her favorites. At PopCultureShock, Katherine Dacey-Tsuei gives her top 20, plus a few that didn’t make her list, and then, in case it seems like she likes every manga (what’s wrong with that?) she talks about a few she didn’t care for. At Precocious Curmudgeon, David Welsh lists the books he enjoyed the most. As my taste and David’s coincide almost perfectly, I’m using it for suggestions on what to read once the current stack is whittled down.

Heidi weighs in at The Beat. Regarding the reclusive #1 choice, The Building Opposite, Heidi notes,

Come to think of it, we’ve never seen a copy of a Ponent Mon book, either. Apparently all the office copies get snatched up. Guess they are THAT good.

That would explain it. And she adds,

Personally speaking, Kai-Ming knows a heck of a lot more about manga than we do, and any list that gets people talking is a good thing.

Hear, hear! The Building Opposite is a French manga, and ActuaBD has a news brief on Kai-Ming’s choice and the news that volume 2 is on the way. (Via Journalista.) Creator Vanyda puts up a manga smile on her blog.

At Anime on DVD, Ed Chavez continues his year-end report cards with a look at Bandai Entertainment.