Libraries are a major source of manga for many fans, especially teens who may not have the means of getting their favorite titles, so having a major publisher like Kodansha release their two biggest hits among other, on the most popular eBook library platform is a big win! At least it is for readers in areas where Overdrive has a wide selection. That is, unfortunately not my area, which I find surprising, since I live in the Southern California area. Hopefully some day soon that will change. If you have access to these titles through your library, give them a try!
Viz Media has another big digital update just in time for the holidays. Two more titles are being added to the Select line, Zyword and Eureka Seven: Gravity Boys and Lifting Girls. There are new bundles, including all 20 volumes of Bakuman with Otter No. 9 oneshot special gift, and JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Part 3 Stardust Warriors. It’s a great way to catch up! There is also a preview of their Cyber Monday sale. The pricing is so-so, but there are some great titles to get in on.
The 44th issue of Shuiesha’s Weekly Shonen Jump announced that the manga creator duo Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata will launch a new title, Platinum End, in the December issue of Jump SQ due out November 4th. The October 5th issue of Viz Media’s digital Weekly Shonen Jump then announced that it would be simulpubing the story, not in the magazine itself, but as individual chapters.
With New York Comic Con in the distance, releases this week are meager. Kodansha Comics debuts a new title in print, Kiss Him Not Me Vol 1. This series has been running on Crunchyroll Manga for a while now. Fujoshi girl keeps shipping the hot boys around her with each other, even through they all want to be with her. It don’t sound like my kind of series, but I though that about Yamada and the Seven Witches and I was wrong about that, so may be I’ll be wrong about this one too.
It looks like Viz really is going to reprint the Tokyopop catalog in digital. This month adds two new titles, Hibiki’s Magic, and a favorite of mine, Hanako and the Terror of Allegory, a series that posits, what if urban legends were real? It’s a short, fun series that I should finish reading sometime. There’s also something about an orange-suited ninja…
It’s the end of an era at Viz as one of the flagship titles of Shonen Jump finally comes to an end. To celebrate Naruto‘s final volume, Viz is pulling out all the digital stops with manga bundles, a “Jump Back” in the mag, and even its own app. It’s too bad it’s keeping two Kishimoto one-shots only for those with the money to buy the entire series in one bundle. Hopefully Viz will rectify that.
With Diamond releasing the shonen titles early last week, this week is a little lighter, but in retrospect, that a good things as some debuts by other publishers would be completely washed over by the final Naruto Vol 72. Seven Seas goes for some representation as they release the first volume of their new series, Merman in My Tub. Instead of monster girls, it’s monster boys, who are just as hot with fish tails and tentacles. I was interested in it when Seven Seas announced it, and while I’m not a fan of fanservice, neither am I opposite to some equal opportunity for the ladies.
Diamond Distributors is getting the Viz Shonen and Shojo titles out a week early. There are plenty of old favorites such as Assassination Classroom Vol 6, Library Wars Vol 14 and My Love Story Vol 6, as well as a new debut. QQ Sweeper is by Kyousuke Motomi, the creator of Dengeki Daisy. It was her first series after Dengeki Daisy ended. It’s a supernatural romance about a new girl transfer student who gets involved with a boy who cleans up the school, but physically and metaphysically. I’ve been looking forward to this series and can’t wait to read it.
Kadokawa has been trying to penetrate the US manga market on its own for a while now. Back in 2014, they released their Comic Walker app that was supposed to update with chapters of manga to read for free, but never went anywhere after a while. Now, it seems they are set to try again, with their new commerce site, Book Walker. They seem to be making interesting promises. The one that sticks out most to me is epub downloads. Most of the titles in English are already available, mostly from Viz Select. We’ll have to wait and see if they branch out into any new titles.
Viz picks up several more former Tokyopop titles for their Select line, including CLAMP School Detectives, just about the only one I’m really interested in reading. I wonder how far they will go with these rescues? I’m glad they have discovered the value of bundles as they add some older shonen jump titles.
Viz Media makes another move to spread its manga to other platforms as Weekly Shonen Jump finally jumps from the Vizmanga app to get on comiXology and Amazon’s Kindle. The jump to just these two platforms and not Nook, Kobo, iOS, or Googleplay is probably due to Amazon’s ownership of comiXology. Hopefully Viz will be able to announce expanding to those other platforms soon as well.
Crunchyroll, the anime and manga streaming service, continues to add manga titles to their all-you-can-eat manga service. This time, they are pulling titles from the Square-Enix library, and are available world-wide.
Aizawa-san Multiples is a rom-com harem series. The frail beauty of the school Shino Aizawa confesses her feeling for Souta Mizutani. Soon after another Aizawa appears, and another, and another! Each one is slightly different, but they are all Aizawa. Are they twins? Clones? Dopplegangers? This series sounds like it takes the comedy in romantic comedy very serious. It might be interesting to see how this gag manga handles the harem model with the boy being surrounded by several of the same girl. There are currently 2 volumes of the series out so far.
Father and Son is a slice of life shonen comedy. It follows former gangster You-san who has to take care of his wild and unpredictable son Shou and the eventful everyday life of the lively pair. This series sounds like it would not just make a good light comedy, but could also be suitable for younger readers, with slap-stick as part of the otherwise easy-going comedy. It would be a good pick up for Yen Press as an Yotsuba&-esque title, if it does well. There are currently 4 volumes available.
Tales of Wedding Rings is a fantasy series. Sato has been in love with his childhood friend Hime since she and her grandfather became his neighbor 10 years ago. When she suddenly says good-bye, he chases after her and is transported to a fantasy world. He catches her and they marry, leading Sato to become the legendary Ring King. This series is created by the duo Maybe, who also created Dusk Maidens of Amnesia, a manga that got an anime adaptation recently. The title initially caught my eye, but the description didn’t do anything to pull me in. But, I am intrigued by Dusk Maidens, so there might be something more here, that not coming through in translation. The series has two volumes out so far.
Donyatsu is probably one of the strangest titles I’ve ever seen. It is about an animal/snack hybrid, in this case a cat who looks like a donut, living in a post-apocalyptic world where all the humans are gone. He is joined by other animal/snack hybrids such as Bengaru, and feline bagel composite. This titles just sounds completely bizarre. I know cat manga can be weird, but combining them with snack foods is just plain out of this world! Such a quirky cat title is hard to pass up. This title so needs a print edition. There are five volumes available.
It’s interesting that all of these titles are relatively new. This should make catch-up easy. The longest is Donyatsu at five volumes, and I can’t imagine it being dialog heavy. It’s also good to see more publishers get on board with Crunchyroll’s all-you-can-read streaming. There is such a wide variety of titles available, and if streaming the only way we can get some of them, (I’m looking at you Donyatsu), then I’m all for it.