All posts by Lori Henderson

Lori Henderson is the writer and reviewer for the manga blog, Manga Xanadu. She also keeps a personal blog at Fangirl Xanadu, and a writing blog at Muse of Xanadu. She contributes to the Good Comics for Kids blog at School Library Journal. As the mother of two teen daughters, she needs all the escape she can get, which reading and writing about manga gives her.

Weekly Top Ten – June 6, 2015

Weekly Top Ten Manga

Every week, the New York Times and Amazon posts the top ten bestselling books. The New York Times gets their numbers from print sales from retailers, while Amazon and Vizmanga.com calculates their own numbers. Once a month the Nielsen Bookscan posts their top twenty graphic novels of which manga is included. Offered here is a listing of these books with their status this week compared with the previous week, and some way-off analysis of the activity.

NYTBS

 

New York Times Bestseller List for the week ending May 30, 2015

  1. LegendOfZelda-LinkToThePast-3DLegend of Zelda A Link to the Past    
  2. Trinity Seven Vol 1     ↑ 2
  3. Is It Wrong To Try To Pick Up Girls In A Dungeon Vol 1     ↑ 3
  4. Sword Art Online: Girl’s OPs Vol 1     ↑ 3
  5. High School DxD Vol 5     
  6. Attack on Titan Vol 1     ↓ 2
  7. Rosario + Vampire: Season II Vol 14     ↓ 5
  8. Naruto Vol 69     
  9. Assassination Classroom  Vol 1      ↑ 1
  10. Big Hero Six Vol 1     ↓ 5

Legend of Zelda A Link to the Past holds on to the top spot for the 4th consequential week. Not bad for a title that is over 20 years old. The Yen Press titles that debuted last week showed they have some traction by not only making it a second week, they all moved up as well, stacking up the top five with the inclusion of another debut title, High School DxD vol 5. Attack on Titan vol 1 fell two spots, but that matters little as the title celebrates 100 total weeks on the list, most of which have been consecutive. Viz Media has a huddle at the bottle of the list with Naruto vol 69, stuck in the middle. Are the days of the orange-suited ninja dominating over with?

Amazon

 

Amazon.com for the week ending June 6, 2015

  1. Naruto 70Naruto Vol 70     ↑ 1
  2. Tokyo Ghoul Vol 1     ↑ 3
  3. Legend of Zelda A Link to the Past     ↓ 2
  4. Berserk Vol 1     
  5. Seraph of the End Vol 5     ↑ 4
  6. Attack on Titan Vol 15     
  7. Uzumaki 3-in-1     ↓ 4
  8. Is It Wrong To Try To Pick Up Girls In A Dungeon Vol 1    
  9. Food Wars Vol 6     ↓ 3
  10. Fairy Tail Vol 48  

Not at Amazon. Naruto Vol 70‘s release lets it overtake Legend of Zelda A Link to the Past, breaking that title’s hold on the top spot. Following behind is the long-awaited print debut of Tokyo Ghoul Vol 1. Berserk Vol 1 makes its return to the top ten. I would really love to know what is fueling its sales. Attack on Titan Vol 15 returns as Vol 1 falls off. Amazon continues to flaunt its volatile different to the NYT. While the title vary widely, Amazon does have a higher rate of returning titles, while NYT has only a few favorites.

∗ = New Release
↑ = Title moved up specified # of spots
↓ = Title moved down specified # of spots
↔ = Title didn’t moved from previous week
↵ = Title returned after dropping off list with total # of weeks (when available) 

Goong: The Royal Palace Volume 9-10

Yul continues his machinations against Shin, determined to get both Chae-Kyung and the title Crown Prince. His mother only cares about him becoming prince, and even sets him up in an engagement with the daughter of a powerful business man who is possibly more horrible that her. Shin and Chae-Kyung’s relationship continues down a rocky road as they alternate between loving and alienating each other, and causing the royal family public humiliation. Add to that the King who won’t show his feeling for his own son and royal baby on the way that could just complicate things further, and  you have just another day at the Royal Palace.

Goong: The Royal Palace Volume 9-10
Goong 9By SoHee Park
Publisher: Yen Press
Age Rating: Teen
Genre: Romance
Price: $18.99
Rating: ★★★½☆

The drama continues to crank up, as if that’s possible, in these two volumes. The soapiness just froths over like a wrongly loaded washing machine from a sitcom. The power plays and political intrigues start coming to the forefront, while Shin and Chae-Kyung’s relationship hit more bumps than smooth patches. While I still find Goong a compelling read, it isn’t as satisfying as it once was.

The main problem I have had with these two volumes is that everyone has become unlikable. Chae-Kyung spends all of her time whining about not wanting to be in the Palace while still pining for Shin. She is so completely selfish that she falls for Yul’s manipulations and betrays Shin even after he tells her it’s what he fears most. This isn’t how you’re suppose to treat someone you claim to like. Shin isn’t blameless in any of this though. His big mouth and bigger pride keeps him from actually showing Chae-Kyung his true feelings, which leads in part to her betrayal. So much of their problems come from their inability and/or unwillingness to talk to each other. It’s become more frustrating than entertaining at this point.

I really disliked Yul for using Chae-Kyung against Shin, despite his claims to love her. You don’t win someone’s love by hurting the person they love, even if it the hot-and-cold relationship Shin and Chae-Kyung have. And then he has the gal to think Shin manipulated Chae-Kyung for not telling her about her grandfather, after all he’s done to try to sabotage her and Shin’s relationship? As much as I hated Mi-Roo Oh, Yul’s chosen fiance, she is exactly who Yul and the Daebi-mama deserve for their manipulations. The King isn’t much better, with the way he keeps favoring Yul over Shin for so many personal reasons and none of them good. Whether it’s because of his feeling for the Daebi-mama, the promise he made to his older brother or some of reason we haven’t heard yet, none of them are excuses for ignoring the good of the country, which putting Yul and Daebi-mama in charge may jeopardize. Hyo-Rin proves she’s on the same level as Daebi-mama, as she manipulates Shin by first exposing the truth of Shin and Chae-Kyung’s engagement, then pleading with Shin to divorce Chae-Kyung for her own good. Despite her situation, she isn’t someone I feel sympathy for.

Goong 10The only people who I still have any respect for are the Queen and the Queen-Mother. They are the only two without any secret agendas, who actually care about others and aren’t afraid to admit their feelings. The Queen has to plead with the King to allow Shin and Chae-Kyung to move to Changduck palace not as the Queen but as Shin’s mother. They are the only two who think to investigate the Daebi-mama as a possible suspect in her own arson. Honestly, I think they are the two smartest in the series and the Queen should be leading instead. She dealing with a difficult pregnancy and is still the most rational person in court at the moment.

I’d really like to see more political intrigue than relationship drama. Shin’s position as Crown Prince has been iffy at best for most of the series, but as soon as decides to take his duties seriously, is when the King seems to really turn against him. Most of the time the problems come from Chae-Kyung. The mention of divorce on National TV and the revelation of their engagement pushes the King to seriously consider demoting Shin. Yul and his mother want to push for a stronger monarchy which doesn’t make them very popular with many in the National Assembly, giving Shin more support. It is going to be tough to get any support for Yul to become Crown Prince. I hope this will be explored more in future volumes.

While these two volumes of Goong didn’t leave a favorable impression on me over all, I did still enjoy reading them. Soaps are supposed to have characters you love to hate, but I don’t think you’re suppose to hate everyone. Hopefully future volumes will change this and give me someone to sympathize with and root for. I still love all the costumes and the detail Park puts into them. I also really like the different fashions Chae-Kyung gets when she’s in everyday clothes. Even though I’ve grown weary of the miscommunication and manipulation in the personal relationships. I will keep reading. It’s like the train wreck you can’t look away from.

Review copies provided by publisher.

Seven Seas Makes Friends with Monsters

sevenseaslogo

Publisher Seven Seas Entertainment recently made another license announcement on their Twitter feed and Tumblr blog. They have picked up another title that fits into their “dark and violent take on kid’s franchises” line.

Tomodachi x MonsterTomodachi x Monster is a recent series by Yoshihiko Inui and is published in Futabasha’s seinen magazine Manga Action. The story follows middle school student Wataru, who hears a mysterious voice after wandering away from school in his mountainous village in rural Japan. He discovers a new “friend”, a monster from the mountain, and one of many that want to befriend young kids like Wataru. This new friendship may transform Wataru’s life, or it may shorten it, as he is needed for his “friend” to participate in a horrifying death match.

If you’ve ever dreamed of being able to kill the Pokemon, or trainers in the video game, then this is probably the series for you. Tomodachi x Monster is described as an “ultra-violent, dark parody” of the Pokemon series, as if the blood-splattered cover wasn’t enough of a clue. It fits in with Magical Girl Apocalypse, taking on the kids-with-monsters genre in a smiliar fashion. Kids with no conscience get a hold of monsters. What could possibly go wrong?

There are two volumes out, with a third scheduled for release in Japan in June. Seven Seas plans on releasing their first volume in February 2016. I don’t know if this is a series I’ll be picking up. I’ve never wished Pokemon any harm (but I’ve never played the video games either), and I do like the Pokemon manga. Really I just don’t know how to feel about a series whose description can put “cute” and “gore” not just in the same sentence, but connected as well! Maybe I’ll have to give this series a pass.

This Week’s Manga: Pile on the Shojo

This Week's Manga

Ajin 5 It’s a good week for variety, with most of the major publishers releasing something. Perfect Square is an imprint of Viz Media for their all-ages titles, and gets mentioned here most often for their Pokemon Adventures titles. Back when Pokemon Black and White came out, Perfect Square released essentially chapter books just to get the title going quickly and later collected them into full volumes. They appear to be following the same pattern with Pokemon XY, the third volume of which is out this week. They are quick hits to keep younger fans who can’t wait happy. Older manga fans can be happy for Vertical Comics’ Ajin Demi-Human. I finally sat down and read the first four volumes and there were fantastic! I was afraid it would be gory, but it wasn’t really. It is a compelling tale with some great cliffhangers and tantalizing mysteries to keep you coming back, so you can be sure I’ll be picking up vol 5, out this week.

Kamisama Kiss 18Viz Media releases their shonen and shojo titles this week. One new title debuts, So Cute It Hurts. This is a gender bender rom-com that might actually be interesting. I wouldn’t mind checking it out at least. Anime Expo is coming up fast, so fans of Julietta Suzuki will want to pick up Kamisama Kiss Vol 18 to prepare for her visit at the con this year. Her other title in English, Karakuri Odette, was published by Tokyopop, and is no longer in print. Two other “can’t miss” titles are Kimi ni Todoke and Natsume’s Book of Friends. Both of these I consider comfort titles. Their stories are more quiet and laid back, but that doesn’t mean they are boring or lack plot. They just move at a slower pace, or the action is less dramatic, making them good titles to read when life has gotten too hectic.

Full List per Diamond Distributors:

KODANSHA COMICS
Fairy Tail Volume 48 GN, $10.99
My Little Monster Volume 8 GN, $10.99

PERFECT SQUARE
Pokemon XY Volume 3 GN, $4.99

SEVEN SEAS ENTERTAINMENT
D-Frag Volume 5 GN, $12.99
Girls Und Panzer Volume 4 GN, $12.99

VERTICAL COMICS
Ajin Demi-Human Volume 5 GN, $12.95

VIZ MEDIA
Assassination Classroom Volume 4 GN, $9.99
Blue Exorcist Volume 13 GN, $9.99
Dragon Ball 3-In-1 Volume 9 TP, $14.99
Food Wars Shokugeki No Soma Volume 6 GN, $9.99
Kamisama Kiss Volume 18 GN, $9.99
Kimi Ni Todoke From Me To You Volume 21 GN, $9.99
Naruto Volume 70 GN, $9.99
Natsume’s Book Of Friends Volume 18 GN, $9.99
So Cute It Hurts Volume 1 GN, $9.99
Toriko Volume 28 GN, $9.99
Voice Over Seiyu Academy Volume 11 GN, $9.99

Time to Say Good-bye

As much as you love a title, at some point it’s got to come to an end, usually. There are the few exceptions that got 10, 20, 45 years, but they are not the rule. Most manga titles do (and should) have an end. Lately, the end for some titles released here have been announced to be ending serialization in Japan.

Chi's Sweet Home 11Chi’s Sweet Home is a cute, heartwarming series about a family who find and adopt a grey and white tabby kitten. Each short chapter shows the family and kitten, Chi, interacting as well as Chi’s adventures with other pets in their apartment complex and neighborhood. The series recently when on a year hiatus and only just returned. It has now been announced that the next volume to be released, Volume 12, would be its final. The series was being released by Vertical Comics, and has been a big hit for the company, with fans of all ages picking it up. The series has been fun, heartwarming and sometimes heartbreaking, but always a great read. I will certainly miss it when it’s gone. Vertical will release the final volume in August, and will follow-up with a re-release of the series in omnibus editions.

Missions of Love 1Mission of Love is a romantic comedy from Kodansha Comics. The series is about a high school girl named Yukina who has the reputation of being an ice queen at school, but is also the author of a very popular cell phone novel. To help her writing, she blackmails popular fellow student Shigure into helping her complete “missions of love” to improve her writing. Kodansha’s Nakayoshi magazine has announced the series will end in the issue out in June. There have been 17 volumes released so far, with the series most likely ending at 18. Kodansha USA has only released 10 so far. Frankly, I’m surprised the series went for so long. The last volume I read, vol 9, felt very stale and repetitive. It’s not a series I’m going to miss.

qq-sweeper 2Most recently announced was the that the final chapter of QQ Sweeper would be released in Shogakukan’s Betsucomi magazine out May 13. It is a supernatural romance about Kyutaro Horikita, the tall, dark and handsome cleaning expert of Kurokado High School. He soon meets transfer student Fumi Nishioka. With Kyutaro’s help, Fumi will learn how to cleanse the spirits from the school and maybe from her heart as well. The newest series by mangaka Kyousuke Motomi, creator of the recently ended Degenki Daisy, just started last March, and Viz only just announced its license in February. Also included with the announced ending, was that a sequel series would in the August issue out in July. It seems kind of odd to me to end one series just to continue it a few months later. I don’t have an opinion on QQ Sweeper yet. The first volume isn’t scheduled to be released until October. But, I’ve like her titles I’ve read so far, so I think I will probably like this one as well.

 

PR: New Viz Media Manga “So Cute It Hurts!!”

Gender-Bender titles aren’t usually my thing, but because it’s twins switching places rather than some science/magic causing it, it might not be too bad. We’ve seen lots of titles of a girl passing off as a boy in an all-boys school plenty of times. Seeing how a boy deals with pretending to be a high school girl would be much more interesting. Hopefully it won’t hurt to read.

Continue reading PR: New Viz Media Manga “So Cute It Hurts!!”

Weekly Top Ten – May 30, 2015

Weekly Top Ten MangaEvery week, the New York Times and Amazon posts the top ten bestselling books. The New York Times gets their numbers from print sales from retailers, while Amazon and Vizmanga.com calculates their own numbers. Once a month the Nielsen Bookscan posts their top twenty graphic novels of which manga is included. Offered here is a listing of these books with their status this week compared with the previous week, and some way-off analysis of the activity.

NYTBS

 

New York Times Bestseller List for the week ending May 23, 2015

  1. LegendOfZelda-LinkToThePast-3DLegend of Zelda A Link to the Past    
  2. Rosario + Vampire: Season II Vol 14     ↑ 2
  3. Trinity Seven Vol 1     
  4. Attack on Titan Vol 1     ↑ 5
  5. Big Hero Six Vol 1     ↓ 2
  6. Is It Wrong To Try To Pick Up Girls In A Dungeon Vol 1     
  7. Sword Art Online: Girl’s OPs Vol 1     
  8. JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Book 1: Phantom Blood Vol 2     ↓ 6
  9. Akame ga Kill Vol 1     ↵ 12
  10. Assassination Classroom  Vol 1      ↓ 2

The top title this remains unchanged as Legend of Zelda A Link to the Past holds on for a third week. Attack on Titan Vol 1 is preparing for is own milestone as it will hit triple digits next week. Yen Press had a trio of titles debut this week, including the first volume of the manga adaptation of Is It Wrong To Try To Pick Up Girls In A Dungeon, the Sword Art Online side story Girls OPs Vol 1, and Trinity Seven Vol 1.

Amazon

 

Amazon.com for the week ending May 30, 2015

  1. LegendOfZelda-LinkToThePast-3DLegend of Zelda A Link to the Past     
  2. Naruto Vol 70     ↑ 1
  3. Uzumaki 3-in-1     ↑ 6
  4. Tokyo Ghoul Vol 1     ↑ 2
  5. Attack on Titan Vol 1     ↓ 3
  6. Food Wars Vol 6     
  7. Attack on Titan Vol 6    
  8. The Ancient Magus’ Bride Vol 1     
  9. Seraph of the End Vol 5     
  10. Attack on Titan Vol 5     

While the Amazon best sellers list is more volatile, the one thing that doesn’t change is Legend of Zelda A Link to the Past is still at the top. Two more of Viz Media’s pre-orders have joined Naruto Vol 70 and Tokyo Ghoul Vol 1; Food Wars Vol 6 and Seraph of the End Vol 5. Seven Seas Entertainment’s new series The Ancient Magus’ Bride, has been getting a lot of good word of mouth, and it shows as the title makes it to the top ten.

∗ = New Release
↑ = Title moved up specified # of spots
↓ = Title moved down specified # of spots
↔ = Title didn’t moved from previous week
↵ = Title returned after dropping off list with total # of weeks (when available)

Missions of Love Volume 9

After coming to the realization that Kirishima-sensei was her first love, Yukina goes to face him on her own to finally know the love that she’s been seeking all this time. Meanwhile, Shigure hears a rumor that reveals Kirishima-sensei’s dark past and rushes off to tell Yukina, but before he can catch up with her, Yukina is whisked away by Kirishima-sensei in his car. Can Shigure reach them in time before Kirishima-sensei repeats an action from his sordid past?

Missions of Love Volume 9
Missions of Love 9By Ema Toyama
Publisher: Kodansha
Age Rating: Older Teen
Genre: Romance
Price: $10.99
Rating: ★★★☆☆

I liked the first two volumes of Missions of Love that I read, so when I was given the opportunity to read more, I couldn’t wait. But after two volumes, it seemed that little had changed, and I was bored with seeing Yukina still being completely clueless, Shigure still as cagey about his feelings for her, Akira is still plotting against Shigure and Mami is still holding out hope that Shigure would love her back.

Honestly, I don’t know what exactly I was hoping for, but this volume wasn’t it. I just felt frustrated at the complete lack of movement with the characters. Everything felt the same as it had back in volume 6. I guess I had hoped for something to have changed in those two intervening volumes, but it really felt like nothing had. What frustrated me most was Yukina. She’s had all these “missions” with Shigure and it seems like she hasn’t learned a thing. After eight volumes you would think something would have sunk in, but she’s still as oblivious to feelings of love as she was at the beginning. She makes big proclamations, but when she finally gets some true feelings she still can’t figure it out? Seriously? I also didn’t care for the cheap shot of using her teacher to set up a seduction when all he really wanted was to find out if she was being bullied or abused by Shigure. The set up was too obvious.

Fortunately there was some character development, but it seemed to be all reserved for Shigure. I liked that he was against Yukina going off with Kirishima to learn “what love really is.” Considering his feelings for her, it’s natural that he wanted to be the one to show her that. Akira agreeing to let Yukina go felt fake, like he was trying to rack up points with her. Shigure also took several steps forward in admitting his feelings for her. He told Mami that he could see her as a friend, not a girlfriend, and he told Yukina that for her, he would stop acting fake. It was a relief to see someone in this series acknowledge their changing feelings and actually act on them.

It’s also about time the story looped back around the cell phone novel plot that the whole “missions” are supposed to be helping her with. She’s supposed to be applying what she’s learned to her novels to make them better. Considering her rankings, she hasn’t been doing that, or even writing at all. Hopefully contact from her rival will change that, and that by applying what she’s learned in her novel it will finally get through to her as well.

I started out liking Missions of Love, but too much of the same can really kill the fun. There has to be some development in the characters, otherwise, what’s the point in reading about them? Unless Yukina is revealed to be a robot, I’m having a hard time buying her continued inability to understand the emotion love, especially now that Shigure is stepping up his game. Toyama needs to step her game too, otherwise this title will really stagnate. I’m not looking for the proverbial lightbulb, just a few connecting the dots.

Review copy provided by publisher.

This Week’s Manga: A Silent Week Before the Fall

This Week's Manga

A Silent Voice 1Last week of the month means a short list, but publishers sometimes save the best for last. Kodansha has a new series debuting this week. A Silent Voice started as a streaming title on Crunchyroll, so while readers asked, not many believed it would get a print edition from Kodansha. We were all pleasantly surprised when we got just that. The story of a deaf girl and her tormentor from elementary school that wants to reconnect has gotten a lot of praise from readers and critics as being powerful and a great read. It’s probably why it got the license. I know I want to read it too, but am hesitant after hearing other talk about how brutal the bullying seemed. But I will read it.

Kuklo UnboundVertical has the second volume of the Attack on Titan Before the Fall novel series, Kuklo Unbound. The volume is an omnibus of the two remaining volumes and is the basis for Kodansha’s manga series Attack on Titan Before the Fall. This series is also unrelated to the first Before the Fall novel. I wish the first novel had gotten a manga adaptation. I really liked it and the main character Angel. But if you’ve been enjoying the Kodansha manga, you can now read the source material. Vertical also has the next volume in their Cardfight! Vanguard series. This is a fun series with a Yu-Gi-Oh-esque feel, but really stands on its own. It’s a great all ages title.

Emma dlx 1Because it’s a slow week, I’m gonna pop in a mention of a title that I can’t believe I missed last week! Yen Press finally released their hard cover deluxe edition of Emma, the Victorian romance by Kaoru Mori. The series went out of print with CMX, but Yen Press has rescued the title and printed up beautiful hardcovers to match their other Kaoru Mori hardcover series, A Bride’s Story. I was able to pick up the first volume of the CMX series and loved it, so I’ve been waiting with bated breath for this new release. That’s why I can’t believe I missed featuring it last week! Luck was on my side that with a short week this week and I could sneak it. The presentation and story make it well worth the price. Don’t pass this one up.

Full List per Diamond Distributors

KODANSHA COMICS
Air Gear Omnibus Volume 5 GN, $19.99
Seven Deadly Sins Volume 8 GN, $10.99
Silent Voice Volume 1 GN, $10.99

ONE PEACE BOOKS
Aquarion Evol Volume 2 GN, $11.95

VERTICAL COMICS
Attack On Titan Before The Fall Kyklo Novel SC, $14.95
Cardfight Vanguard Volume 6 GN, $10.95

YEN PRESS
Yotsuba & ! Volume 1 GN (New Printing), $13.00

Dark Horse at Anime Central

DarkHorseComicsLogo

Comics and manga publisher Dark Horse made a surprise appearance at Anime Central, a Mid-west con held in Chicago, IL. They had an even bigger surprise for attendees as they announced four new titles to ship in 2016.

giganto-maxia Giganto Maxima is a one shot volume by Kentaro Miura, who is best known in the west for the series Berserk, which is also published by Dark Horse. The series takes place 100 million years in the future, and is about the war between the forces led by Zeus, and the Nether forces led by the giant Alcyoneus. The series is the first original work from Miura in 24 years, since the start of Berserk, and fans will either be happy or disappointed that this volume will be more light-hearted and idealistic. Dark Horse will publish this series in February 2016.

danganronpa-the-animationDanganronpa: The Animation is the manga adaptation of the TV series which is based on a video game. The series follows a group of high school students, each of whom possess a different exceptional talent. They are all locked in at school, and told that the only way to escape is to kill a fellow student without getting caught. After a student is murdered, they hold a trial to find out who is responsible while their own lives are on the line. My oldest daughter was obsessed with this series for a while, so I’m familiar with it somewhat, which just makes me more interested in reading the manga. Or at least I can say I’m getting it for her and then just read it myself. The series is complete in four volumes with the first volume set to be released in March 2016.

i-am-a-hero I Am A Hero is a bit of a coup for Dark Horse. The series is published by Shogakukan, whose titles are almost exclusively published by Viz Media. It is the company’s first Shogakukan title since they published Godzilla back in 1988. I Am A Hero is about Hideo Suzuki, a struggling manga artist who might also be mentally unstable. One night, he sees the victim of an auto collision with a twisted leg and broken neck, get up and walk away. As more of Tokyo’s dead start to rise, there are two things that allow a crazy man like Suzuki to survive; the belief that he is destined to be a hero, and something that is a rarity in Japan, a gun. The series has quite a pedigree as it was nominated for the 3rd, 4th, and 5th Manga Taisho Awards, and won the 58th Shogakukan Manga Award in the General Category in 2013. I’m on the fence about this one. I’m not excited about more zombie manga unless there’s a good twist, and I don’t know if Suzuki will be enough of one to make it interesting. But all those award nominations make me think there might be more here. I might check it out. There are currently 16 volumes out, and Dark Horse will publish the series in a 2-in-1 omnibus format starting in April 2016.

rg-vedaThe final series is a CLAMP title rescue. RG Veda was CLAMP’s debut title. It was originally published here by Tokyopop ten years ago, so needless to say, it is very out of print. The story is about Yasha-o, the Guardian Warrior of the North who discovers the last child of the Ashura-o clan, Ashura. The pair go on a quest to find the Six Stars and defeat the tyrantical King of Heaven, Taishakuten. The series features elements of Vedic mythology, and takes its name from one of the four Vedas. This series was the first CLAMP manga I read that I liked enough to read to the end. It was originally published in 10 volumes, but Dark Horse is basing its release on the 5 volume omnibus version released by Kadokawa. They are further condensing the series down to 3 omnibus volumes of around 600 pages each like their editions of Cardcaptor Sakura and Tokyo Babylon. These will be killer books. The first volume will be out in August 2016.

PR: Viz Media Releases New Shonen Sampler Pack

One of the advantages to digital manga is exactly this; being able to quickly and easily sample titles. Sampler packs were one of the things I really looked forward to picking up at SDCC. All the manga publishers would have them, though supplies could be limited, so it was best to get them on the first or second day. Even my kids, who really are manga readers would grab one for the ride on the shuttle back to the car or hotel. This new pack from Viz only features shonen titles, but not only do they offer the first chapters of some of their most popular titles, it previews the next big chapters in the stories, such as after time jumps in One Piece and Naruto, and a new story arc in Bleach. While I do like this sampler pack, I hope Viz will do one for Shojo as well.

Continue reading PR: Viz Media Releases New Shonen Sampler Pack

Weekly Top Ten – May 23, 2015

Weekly Top Ten Manga

Every week, the New York Times and Amazon posts the top ten bestselling books. The New York Times gets their numbers from print sales from retailers, while Amazon and Vizmanga.com calculates their own numbers. Once a month the Nielsen Bookscan posts their top twenty graphic novels of which manga is included. Offered here is a listing of these books with their status this week compared with the previous week, and some way-off analysis of the activity.

NYTBS

 

New York Times Bestseller List for the week ending May 16, 2015

  1. LegendOfZelda-LinkToThePast-3DLegend of Zelda A Link to the Past     ↔
  2. JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Book 1: Phantom Blood Vol 2     ↔
  3. Big Hero Six Vol 1     ↑ 2
  4. Rosario + Vampire: Season II Vol 14     ↓ 1
  5. Akame ga Kill Vol 2     ↓ 1
  6. Nisekoi: False Love Vol 9     ∗
  7. Dragonar Academy Vol 6     ∗
  8. Assassination Classroom Vol 1     ↓ 1
  9. Attack on Titan Vol 1     ↓ 1
  10. Naruto Vol 69     ↵ 8

The top two titles remain unchanged this week, proving that Legend of Zelda A Link to the Past still has plenty of leg to stand on. Big Hero 6 Vol 1 makes a move back up as it proves it has some staying power after 8 weeks on the list now. Assassination Classroom Vol 1 is making a good showing as well as it hits 11 weeks. Only two new titles debuted; Nisekoi Vol 9 and Dragonar Academy Vol 6. It weird to see Naruto struggling as Vol 69 has only had 8 weeks total since its release back in March.

Amazon

 

Amazon.com for the week ending May 23, 2015

  1. LegendOfZelda-LinkToThePast-3DLegend of Zelda A Link to the Past     ↔
  2. Attack on Titan Vol 1     ↔
  3. Naruto Vol 70     ↑ 3
  4. Attack on Titan Vol 15     ↔
  5. JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Book 1: Phantom Blood Vol 2     ↔
  6. Tokyo Ghoul Vol 1     ↑ 1
  7. Trinity Seven Vol 1     ∗
  8. Legend of Zelda Box Set     ↵
  9. Uzumaki 3-in-1     ↵
  10. High School DxD Vol 5     ∗

Much like the NYT list, the top two titles remain the same with Legend of Zelda A Link to the Past on top. The bottom half of Amazon’s top five remains the same as well, with the only change being the preorder for the next Naruto Vol, 70, moving up to #3. Only two new titles debuted here as well; Trinity Seven Vol 1 and High School DxD Vol 5. Male-gaze readers seem to prefer Amazon for their manga. The Legend of Zelda Box Set returns, with little surprise, at such a good price. The Tokyo Ghoul Vol 1  preorder has moved up again too with its release date now only a week away. Or was it the digital only release of Vol 2 over at Vizmanga?

∗ = New Release
↑ = Title moved up specified # of spots
↓ = Title moved down specified # of spots
↔ = Title didn’t moved from previous week
↵ = Title returned after dropping off list with total # of weeks (when available)