Analysis, predictions, and reviews

Vermonia1I wrote about the Vermonia manga series for PWCW this week, and at Robot 6 I took a look at the finalists for the Ignatz awards, which will be voted on and handed out at Small Press Expo later this month.

Reactions and addenda continue to pour in to the news that Kodansha has ended its licenses with Tokyopop. Heidi MacDonald has a very thorough roundup at The Beat, and Tom Spurgeon reflects a bit at The Comics Reporter. At Anime Vice, Gia Manry interviews Tokyopop Marketing Manager Kasia Piekarz but doesn’t get much out of her other than the fact that Tokyopop was ready for this. Sesho adds his commentary on the matter in his latest podcast.

David Welsh and Shojo Flash both take a look at this week’s new releases, while Danielle Leigh looks ahead with a peek at the September Previews.

At the Yaoi Press blog, YP publisher Yamila Abraham has a really interesting post on the possibilities the Kindle opens up overseas—or would open up if it weren’t region-blocked. (Not that there aren’t ways around that sort of thing.) This is of more than academic interest, of course, as YP will be releasing books to the Kindle soon.

Kate Dacey profiles manga-friendly comics store Comicopia at The Manga Critic.

You can win a copy of vol. 1 of X-Men: Misfits at Comics Worth Reading.

News from Japan: Things have been slow lately, but we did get word that the creator of Marmalade Boy is launching a new series.

Reviews: Carlo Santos files another edition of Right Turn Only!! at ANN. Go, read. Park Cooper has some short reviews of recent titles and Joy Kim takes a look at the September issue of Yen Plus at Manga Life.

Lori Henderson on vol. 1 of Dark Hunters (Manga Xanadu)
Lorena Nava Ruggero on vol. 1 of Detroit Metal City (i heart manga)
Deb Aoki on vol. 1 of Four-Eyed Prince (
Oyceter on vols. 2 and 3 of Goong (Sakura of DOOM)
Shevaun Morrison on vol. 1 of Higurashi When They Cry: Cotton Drifting Arc (Kuriousity)
Emily on Kanchigai Musume to Bichigire Ouji (Emily’s Random Shoujo Manga Page)
Lorena Nava Ruggero on vol. 3 of Love Com (MangaCast)
Ysabet Reinhardt MacFarlane on vols. 17 and 18 of Nana (Manga Life)
Katherine Farmar on vol. 1 of Pure Heart (Comics Village)
Ken Haley on vols. 1 and 2 of Samurai 7 (Manga Recon)
Erica Friedman on vol. 1 of Tenbin ha Hana to Asobu (Okazu)
Julie on vol. 3 of Togari (Manga Maniac Cafe)
Snow Wildsmith on You Make My Head Spin (Manga Jouhou)

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  1. The thing that really makes me mad about all this Kodansha stuff is that OK, you want to keep Tokyopop in the dark about what you’re doing. Maybe you want to keep Del Rey in the dark as well. But all these rumors seems like an insult to manga fans. I mean, O Great Kodansha, can you at least tell US what is gonna be done with the titles?? For people that read manga, it seems a shaft just to leave us hanging. The only way you get any truth out of what is actually happening is through online news sites and bloggers. Same thing happened with Geneon and ADV. And in some ways Tokyopop as well. Like the people running these companies try to kid us into believing that all is well in manga and anime land. UNTIL they go out of business. I guess I shouldn’t expect any less, they are corporate types in the end. And they don’t respect their own customers. Witness the toilet paper Tokyopop tried to foist on us and then having the audacity to up the price on their manga after it! Witness Viz’s impending unjustified price increases. Witness the complete and utter failure of Kodansha to give any reassurance at all to manga fans that their Tokyopop series will be finished or older titles will be kept in print. At least they could have let Tokyopop continue printing finished series as demand dictated. If readers pick up older series and then find some volumes to be unavailable, what are they supposed to do? And yes, I do think that Kodansha betrayed Tokyopop in some ways. After all, it was Tokyopop that allowed the vaunted but now syncophant CLAMP to become popular in the first place, along with GTO, and Love Hina, which were the first superstar titles to really gain a foothold here. Kodansha needs to be very forthright and move quickly to say what they are going to do with these limbo titles or risk facing some backlash.