It’s a question that’s been plaguing manga readers since Tokyopop quit publishing in 2011. Who would get the license to Fruits Basket? I don’t think there’s been much doubt that the title would be picked up again. It was Tokyopop’s license to print money back in the early aughts, and kept the company afloat throughout the decade. It was a Kodansha title, so that seemed a sure bet, but the last four years have been a wasteland of news. But Yen Press gave readers an early Christmas present by announcing the return of the shojo series. I missed it the first time around, so I will be picking it up.
YEN PRESS ANNOUNCES THE RETURN OF FRUITS BASKET AND THE PUBLICATION OF TWO NEW SERIES FROM NATSUKI TAKAYA
NEW YORK, NY (12/4/2015) – Yen Press, the manga and graphic novel imprint of Hachette Book Group, announced today that it will be bringing back Natsuki Takaya’s bestselling Fruits Basket series in fully updated collector’s editions as well as debuting Takaya’s latest work, Liselotte & Witch’s Forest, and her classic series Twinkle Stars.
One of the bestselling properties in the history of the North American manga market, Fruits Basket will be returning to bookstores next Spring, having been out of print for nearly half a decade. Yen Press will republish the series with new translations in twelve updated collector’s editions of the anniversary aizoban editions which publisher Hakusensha recently began releasing in Japan. Additionally, Yen Press will debut Liselotte & Witch’s Forest and Twinkle Stars, heretofore unreleased for Western audiences.
VP and Publishing Director of Yen Press, Kurt Hassler, had this to say about the agreement, which was brokered through the Tuttle-Mori Agency: “It would not be an exaggeration to say that the original publication of Fruits Basket had a transformative effect on comics culture in this market. Fruits Basket, along with a handful of other properties, welcomed female readers to a medium and an industry that had too long ignored them, introducing a generation of readers and future creators and professionals to comics, and the reverberations of that impact continue to reshape comics today. We are delighted that Takaya-sensei and Hakusensha have seen fit to entrust us to reintroduce Fruits Basket into North America and the UK and to introduce Liselotte & Witch’s Forest and Twinkle Stars to these markets for the first time.”
Fruits Basket is the story of Tohru Honda, a young girl who – following the untimely deaths of her parents – finds herself living in a tent on land belonging to the Sohma family. When the family takes her in, she discovers their rather unusual “curse”: possessed by spirits of the Chinese Zodiac, they transform into their zodiac animal when embraced by someone of the opposite sex.
In Liselotte & Witch’s Forest, titular character Liselotte holds out hope of finding an important person from her past, but her quest leads her to a forest rumored to be inhabited by witches.
Sakuya, the lead character of Twinkle Stars, has always been mesmerized by the night sky, but when she meets a boy at her eighteenth birthday party, she discovers that the stars may actually have more to do with her fate than she ever imagined.
Volumes one and two of Fruits Basket will be released in June of 2016 with a single volume releasing each month thereafter. The first volume of Liselotte & Witch’s Forest will release in July 2016 with successive volumes following every three months. Additional details regarding Twinkle Stars, which will be published as five omnibus editions, will be released at a later date.
About Yen Press
Yen Press is an imprint of Hachette Book Group dedicated to publishing graphic novels for adults and young readers. Yen Press’ focus is primarily on licensed manga, but also publishes across the wide spectrum of the graphic novel market, including, but not limited to: original manga publications, original American comics/graphic novels, webcomics, licensed adaptations, and children’s graphic novels. For more information, visit www.yenpress.com.
About Hachette Book Group:
Hachette Book Group is a leading trade publisher based in New York and a division of Hachette Livre, the third-largest trade and educational publisher in the world. HBG publishes under the divisions of Little, Brown and Company, Little Brown Books for Young Readers, Grand Central Publishing, Orbit, Hachette Books, Hachette Nashville, and Hachette Audio.