BookWalker to Relaunch, Death Note Team Start New Series

Platinum End

Platinum End

Takeshi Obata and Tsugumi Ohba, the creators of Death Note and Bakuman, have a new series in the works, Platinum End, which they describe as the story of “a human and an angel,” with a central character who “does not seek out hope in order to live.” No word yet on any licenses, but it’s hard to believe Viz wouldn’t pick this up.

Some big digital news: Kadokawa is going to relaunch its BookWalker e-book service next week with a broader line of manga and light novels, including works from other publishers. No word on any changes to their ComicWalker app, which offers first and most recent chapters of a lot of different manga for free.

Dark Horse has licensed Kengo Hanazawa’s zombie series I Am a Hero.

Manga journalist par excellence Deb Aoki posted three major stories recently: She talks to editors of Kodansha Comics and Alvin Lu of the new digital publisher Kodansha Advanced Media about the success of Attack on Titan and Kodansha’s digital publishing plans; she interviews Tokyopop CEO Stu Levy about his return to publishing, with both new books and a new app; and she has a lively interview with Eiichi Shimizu and Tomohiro Shimoguchi, creators of the latest Ultraman manga.

At Organization Anti-Social Geniuses, Justin talks to three manga editors about their jobs—breaking in, what they do, and what the challenges are.

Erica Friedman has some updates on yuri manga in Japan in the latest edition of Yuri Network News at Okazu.

The Manga Bookshelf team discusses their picks of the week, including the long-awaited new volume of Vinland Saga.

News from Japan: The city of Kushiro, in Hokkaido, is bankrolling the creation of a shoujo manga set there in hopes of attracting tourists. 9: Kimi Ga Iru Machi De Koi O Shita (9: I Fell in Love in the Town Where You Live) will include many local sites of interest in its story. Kizuku Watanabe and Jō Aoto have created an Assassination Classroom spinoff, Koro-sensei Q!, which will launch in Friday’s issue of Saikyō Jump. And Ema Toyama has a new series in the works.

Reviews: Ash Brown sums up a week’s worth of manga reading at Experiments in Manga. Sean Gaffney and Michelle Smith dive into a big pile of recent releases in the Bookshelf Briefs column at Manga Bookshelf.

Naru on Emma (Organization Anti-Social Geniuses)
Sakura Eries on vol. 6 of Kiss of the Rose Princess (The Fandom Post)
L.B. Bryant on vol. 1 of Komomo Confiserie (ICv2)
Sean Gaffney on vol. 1 of RoseGunsDays Season 1 (A Case Suitable for Treatment)
Kanta Ishida on Terra Formars (The Japan News)
Kory Cerjak on vol. 1 of Tokyo ESP (The Fandom Post)
Lori Henderson on vols. 6-9 of What Did You Eat Yesterday? (Manga Xanadu)
Ken H. on vol. 3 of Yamada-Kun and the Seven Witches (Sequential Ink)
Rebecca Silverman on vol. 1 of Your Lie in April (ANN)
Erica Friedman on vol. 2 of Yuri Kuma Arashi (Okazu)

Two More Announcements from Yen Press

Servant x ServiceYen Press had two announcements this week: The Akame ga KILL! prequel manga Akame ga KILL! Zero, and a print edition of the four-panel gag manga Servant x Service

The first two volumes of One-Punch Man and the first two volumes of Tokyo Ghoul top the latest New York Times manga best-seller list.

The Manga Bookshelf team discuss this week’s new releases.

Erica Friedman posts a new edition of Yuri Network News at Okazu.

At Organization Anti-Social Geniuses, Justin talks to a fan about the anime and manga scene in Bulgaria.

Lynzee Lamb counts down seven dessert-obsessed manga.

News from Japan: Two prequel chapters of Bakuman, telling the stories of the two protagonists before they met, will run in Weekly Shonen Jump, starting with the issue that’s out on September 21. New series by Inio Asano (Solanin), Daisuke Igarashi (Children of the Sea), and Kumiko Suekane (Afterschool Charisma), among others, will debut soon in Shogakukan’s Hibana magazine.

Reviews: At Organization Anti-Social Geniuses, Justin stumbles across Itihasa, a josei manga by Wakako Mizuki, a member of the Post Year 24 Group. Jocelyne Allen writes about an untranslated manga anthology, Shitashigema Akuna, a collection of adaptations by various artists of short stories by Shinichi Hoshi. The Manga Bookshelf team give us some short takes on new releases in their latest Bookshelf Briefs column.

Matt Brady on vol. 1 of Assassination Classroom (Warren Peace Sings the Blues)
Leroy Douresseaux on vol. 5 of Assassination Classroom (The Comic Book Bin)
Gabriella Ekens on vols. 5-7 of Blood Blockade Battlefront (ANN)
Nick Creamer on vol. 5 of A Bride’s Story (ANN)
Leroy Douresseaux on vol. 55 of Case Closed (The Comic Book Bin)
Sean Gaffney on vol. 2 of Emma (A Case Suitable for Treatment)
Laura on vol. 1 of First Love Monster (Heart of Manga)
Matthew Alexander on vol. 1 of Gou-Dere Sora Nagihara (The Fandom Post)
Justin on Haven’t You Heard? My Name Is Sakamoto (Organization Anti-Social Geniuses)
Sean Gaffney on vol. 26 of Hayate the Combat Butler (A Case Suitable for Treatment)
Alice Vernon on vol. 1 of Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon? (Girls Like Comics)
Ash Brown on vol. 2 of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure, Part 1: Phantom Blood (Experiments in Manga)
Kory Cerjak on vol. 3 of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure, Part 1: Phantom Blood (The Fandom Post)
Saeyong Kim on K-ON! High School (No Flying, No Tights)
Sean Gaffney on vols. 7 and 8 of Lucifer and the Biscuit Hammer (A Case Suitable for Treatment)
L.B. Bryant on vol. 1 of My Hero Academia (ICv2)
Dave Ferraro on vol. 1 of One-Punch Man (Comics-and-More)
Lori Henderson on vols. 1-5 of Puella Magi Kazuma Magica: The Innocent Malice (Manga Xanadu)
Nick Creamer on vol. 2 of A Silent Voice (ANN)
Erica Friedman on vol. 7 of Torikaebaya (Okazu)
Steve Bennett on vol. 1 of Ultraman (ICv2)
Michael Buntag on vol. 1 of Ultraman (NonSensical Words)
Matthew Warner on vol. 1 of Ultraman (The Fandom Post)

New Licenses, More Digital

Elite All-Girls SchoolSeven Seas inexplicably chose the Friday before Labor Day to announce three new licenses: I Was Abducted by an Elite All-Girls School as a Sample Commoner, the title of which pretty much gives away the plot; Battle Rabbits, by 07-Ghost creators Yuki Amemiya and Yukino Ichihara; and the high school romantic comedy Masamune-kun’s Revenge.

More big manga news: Kodansha Comics manga is now available on comiXology, and so is Shonen Jump. This makes comiXology a handy one-stop shop for manga, as Dark Horse, Viz, Seven Seas, DMP, Gen Manga, Udon, and even Tokyopop are all on there. Only Vertical and Yen Press are missing.

And speaking of Shonen Jump, Viz has just announced that the first chapter of Mononofu, by Kurogane creator Haruto Ikezawa, will run in the next issue.

Guardian HeartsViz has been bringing back a lot of manga originally licensed by Tokyopop in its Viz Select digital line; the new series debuting in September include CLAMP School Detectives, Rizelmine, Guardian Hearts, Chocolate Cosmos, and Saber Marionette J.

It’s Hayate the Combat Butler vs. Richard II as the Manga Bookshelf team discuss their Pick of the Week.

Helen McCarthy hooks us up with a 1994 documentary on manga, first broadcast by the BBC as an intro to their broadcast of Akira. The half-hour film includes appearances by Katsuhiro Otomo and Hayao Miyazaki.

At Heart of Manga, Laura looks at this month’s new shoujo and josei manga releases.

And Erica Friedman posts the latest edition of Yuri Network News at Okazu.

Reviews: The Anti-Social Geniuses review the first chapter of 43 Viz Select manga, most if not all of which were originally published by Tokyopop. Ash Brown updates us with My Week in Manga at Experiments in Manga.

Sean Gaffney on vol. 16 of Attack on Titan (A Case Suitable for Treatment)
Lori Henderson on vol. 1 of Attack on Titan Junior High (Manga Xanadu)
Chris Beveridge on chapter 641 of Bleach (The Fandom Post)
Jocelyne Allen on Cocoon (Brain Vs. Book)
Kate O’Neil on vol. 16 of Dorohedoro (The Fandom Post)
Johanna Draper Carlson on vol. 6 of Genshiken: Second Season (Comics Worth Reading)
Helen on Inari Konkon (Organization Anti-Social Geniuses)
Leroy Douresseaux on vol. 1 of Komomo Confiserie (I Reads You)
Anna N on vol. 1 of Komomo Confiserie (Manga Report)
Rebecca Silverman on vol. 1 of Komomo Confiserie (ANN)
AstroNerdBoy on K-ON! High School (AstroNerdBoy’s Anime and Manga Blog)
Nick Creamer on vol. 1 of My Hero Academia (ANN)
Sakura Eries on vol. 9 of My Little Monster (The Fandom Post)
Ken H on vol. 5 of Noragami (Sequential Ink)
Leroy Douresseaux on vol. 1 of One-Punch Man (I Reads You)
Leroy Douresseaux on vol. 7 of Terra Formars (The Comic Book Bin)
Sarah on Yotsuba&! (nagareboshi reviews)

Tokyo Ghoul Tops the Best-Seller List

Tokyo Ghoul

The first volume of Tokyo Ghoul tops the New York Times manga best-seller list. Want to check it out? Viz is offering an extended preview on its digital service.

The Attack on Titan: Before the Fall manga is two degrees of separation from the original series—it’s an adaptation of a light novel spinoff—but even so, it’s doing well, with 1.4 million copies in print in Japan, according to Kodansha’s Bessatsu Shōnen magazine, where the series runs. Kodansha Comics publishes the manga in North America, where the fifth volume is due out on August 25, and Vertical publishes the light novels.

Deb Aoki’s advice to journalists who want to interview manga-ka has lots of interesting tidbits about the industry and cultural differences that make it a good read for any manga fan.

Zainab Akhtar has a quick introduction to the two Inio Asano titles that will be published next year, A Girl on the Shore and Goodnight PunPun.

Erica Friedman brings us the latest edition of Yuri Network News at Okazu.

The venerable shoujo manga magazine Margaret has launched a digital edition.


Lesley Aeschliman on vol. 1 of Black Rose Alice (Lesley’s Musings on Manga)
Leroy Douresseaux on vol. 13 of Blue Exorcist (The Comic Book Bin)
Zainab Akhtar on Fragments of Horror (Comics & Cola)
Lori Henderson on vols. 2 and 3 of Genkaku Picasso (Manga Xanadu)
Richard Gutierrez on vol. 1 of Log Horizon (The Fandom Post)
Sean Gaffney on vol. 75 of One Piece (A Case Suitable for Treatment)
Matthew Warner on vol. 28 of Toriko (The Fandom Post)

August Manga Releases, ‘Barefoot Gen’ Kickstarter

Attack on Titan 16

I rounded up the August manga releases at the Barnes and Noble blog; with new volumes of Naruto and Attack on Titan coming out, it’s a big month.

Speaking of Attack on Titan, there has been a flurry of news lately about how big a deal it is, but this sums it all up: There are currently 50 million copies in print of the different volumes of the series; volume 16 is out in Japan and will be out in the U.S. this month.

Last Gasp, the publisher of Barefoot Gen, has launched a Kickstarter to fund the publication of 4,000 hardcover volumes (1,000 each of the first four volumes) and distribution to schools and libraries.

Lori Henderson rounds up the Otakon news, with her own commentary on the new license announcements.

At Heart of Manga, Laura takes a look at this month’s new shoujo manga releases.

Zainab Akhtar writes about Jiro Taniguchi’s The Walking Man and the Japanese concept of ma, or emptiness.

Stop! You’re reading the wrong way! Most MangaBlog readers probably don’t even notice those guides on the last page of each volume that explain how to read manga right to left, but Verneida Vergara does, and she posts a quick survey of which publishers do and don’t include that helpful-to-newcomers information.

Reviews: The Manga Bookshelf team have plenty to say about an eclectic selection of new volumes in their latest Bookshelf Briefs column.

Erica Friedman on Ai Rabu Yuu Yori Aishiteru (Okazu)
Ash Brown on vol. 1 of Akame Ga Kill and vol. 2 of Let’s Dance a Waltz (Experiments in Manga)
Dave Ferraro on vol. 1 of Captain Ken (Comics-and-More)
Amanda Vail on Legal Drug and Drug & Drop (Women Write About Comics)
Leroy Douresseaux on vol. 12 of Magi (The Comic Book Bin)
Kanta Ishida on My Love Story!! (The Japan News)
Kristin on vol. 5 of My Love Story!! (Comic Attack)
Ash Brown on vol. 1 of Orange Junk (Experiments in Manga)
Sarah on vol. 9 of Ranma 1/2 (2-in-1 edition) (nagareboshi reviews)
Sean Gaffney on vol. 2 of A Silent Voice (A Case Suitable for Treatment)
Matthew Warner on vol. 1 of So Cute It Hurts! (The Fandom Post)
Lindsey Tomsu on vols. 1-3 of Zero’s Familiar (No Flying, No Tights)

Otakon News, Manga Reigns Triumphant, and More

Queen Emeraldas

Queen Emeraldas

It’s been a busy couple of weeks! I rounded up most of the new manga license announcements from Anime Expo and Comic-Con International at the Barnes and Noble blog; here’s the latest from Otakon:

Kodansha Comics

  • Queen Emeraldas, by Leiji Matsumoto
  • Complex Age, by Yui Sakuma
  • Forget Me Not, by Nao Emoto


  • Goodnight PunPun, by Inio Asano (Solanin, Nijigahara Holograph)
  • The Heiress and the Chauffeur, by Keiko Ishihara
  • Blanc et Noir, an art book by Takeshi Obata (Death Note, Bakuman)


  • Mysterious Girlfriend X, by Riichi Ueshiba
  • The Gods Lie, by Kaori Ozaki (Immortal Rain)
  • Devil’s Line, by Ryo Hanada

And somewhere in there, Seven Seas announced it has acquired the license to The Other Side of Secret, by Hideaki Yoshikawa.

Sean Gaffney always has interesting things to say about new licenses, so be sure to check out his SDCC/Otakon roundup as well.

On the other side of the coin, Lori Henderson takes a look at all the manga series that are ending in Japan this month.

There has been a flurry of commentary about the importance of manga in reshaping the comics and graphic novel market lately, and the best starting point is probably Heidi MacDonald’s post at The Beat, where she links to it all and provides her own perspective.

Looking for something to read? I did a spring and summer teen manga roundup at SLJTeen.

Justin Stroman caught up with Yen Press publisher Kurt Hassler at Anime Expo and talked to him about a bunch of things, including whether their digital-first licenses will go to print (maybe) and the decision to license Yowamushi Pedal:

Oh you know, there’s a lot of common wisdom in the industry that sports manga doesn’t work, but it’s very short-sighted not to challenge preconceptions, there’s obviously a huge Yowamushi fan base, I’ve seen any number of cosplayers, the anime has been a massive success…it’s one of those properties that we’ve had our eye on for a long time. We think the timing was right, we want to challenge the preconceived boundaries of what the market thinks it can do, and we think it has an excellent chance of being a highly successful title.

Justin also interviewed Viz editor Marlene First.


Ryan Holmberg writes about avant-garde manga artist Sasaki Maki; Holmberg has translated a collection of 15 Maki stories into English, and the book has just been published by Breakdown Press under the title Sasaki Maki’s Ding Dong Circus and Other Stories, 1967-1974.

ICv2 lists the top ten manga franchises.

The Manga Bookshelf team discuss their Pick of the Week.

Reviews: Ash Brown accounts for a week’s worth of manga reading at Experiments in Manga. Michelle Smith and Sean Gaffney provide short takes on recent releases in the latest Bookshelf Briefs from Manga Bookshelf.

Connie on vol. 6 of Ai no Kusabi (Slightly Biased Manga)
Connie on vol. 5 of Alice in the Country of Clover: Cheshire Cat Waltz (Slightly Biased Manga)
Confusedmuse on Alice in the Country of Hearts (Organization Anti-Social Geniuses)
Connie on vol. 1 of Alice in the Country of Joker: Circus and Liar’s Game (Slightly Biased Manga)
Connie on vol. 30 of Blade of the Immortal (Slightly Biased Manga)
Kate O’Neil on vol. 55 of Case Closed (The Fandom Post)
Connie on vol. 5 of Cross Game (Slightly Biased Manga)
Connie on vol. 5 of Demon Love Spell (Slightly Biased Manga)
Kate O’Neil on vol. 1 of The Demon Prince of Momochi House (The Fandom Post)
Connie on vol. 12 of Dengeki Daisy (Slightly Biased Manga)
Ren on vol. 1 of The Devils and the Realist (Fearless Facade)
Josh Begley on vol. 1 of Emma (omnibus edition) (The Fandom Post)
Kristin on Fragments of Horror (Comic Attack)
Tessa Barber on Gyo (No Flying, No Tights)
Lori Henderson on Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories (Good Comics for Kids)
Erica Friedman on Love Desu (Okazu)
Connie on vol. 8 of Love Pistols (Slightly Biased Manga)
Connie on vol. 3 of No. 6 (Slightly Biased Manga)
AstroNerdBoy on vol. 1 of Non Non Biyori (AstroNerdBoy’s Anime and Manga Blog)
Connie on vol. 4 of Phantom Thief Jeanne (Slightly Biased Manga)
Sarah on vol. 25 of Soul Eater (nagareboshi reviews)
Rebecca Silverman on vol. 2 of Tokyo Ghoul (ANN)
Rebecca Silverman on vol. 1 of Ultraman (ANN)