Tag Archives: Viz Select

The Week’s Manga: Manga Survivor

This Week's Manga

Devil Survivor 1 There’s a lot of manga coming out this week. Kodansha releases the first volume of Devil Survivor, the adaptation of Shin Megami Tensei, the game that the Persona is a spin-off of.  I’ve been interested in Shin Megami Tensei, as well as Persona, thanks to my older daughter’s obsession, so I’ll be checking this title out. Vertical Comics does the seemingly impossible as it releases the final volume of Mobile Suit Gundam Origin, the series that not even the publisher believed would sell. But Vertical and Western fans proved them wrong, and now the series comes to an end with Vol 11.

Continue reading The Week’s Manga: Manga Survivor

Bring Em Back: V.B. Rose

As I was pulling together titles for my post update on crafting manga, I remembered I had a couple of volumes of V.B. Rose. I won volume 7 from a blog a few years ago. I remember there being a lot of hype for the series back in the day, and being ever curious, wanted to see what all the hoopla was about. Then found volume 1 on Paperback Swap and snatched it up.

vb rose 1V.B. Rose is about high school student Ageha Shiroi. Her older sister Hibari, who she idolizes, is getting married and Ageha doesn’t approve. But, Ageha loves weddings and can’t resist when she is invited to see the dress design with Hibari at the boutique Velvet Blue Rose. The boutique is run by two men, Yukari Arisawa and Mitsuya Kuromine. Ageha gets off on the wrong foot with Yukari when she explodes over the wedding, and Yukari literally throws her out of the shop. Ageha, with the help of her friend Mamoru, realizes she did wrong and goes back to apologize. Things go awry again, and Mitsuya hurts his hand. Ageha volunteers to help out in Mitsuya’s place. Yukari balks at first, but Ageha is very crafty, and already know for the handmade purses she makes for Hibari and her friends, so he relents. It becomes a race to get the Hibari’s dress done on time as Ageha has to learn bead embroidery and how to deal with Yukari’s strict management and Mitsuya’s constant glomping.

I read volume 7 first and at the time wasn’t too impressed. I passed on reviewing it since I didn’t have anything useful to say. For this re-read, I read volume 1 first and then volume 7 and found I liked the series a whole lot more. The first volume set up the characters and relationships really well,  so when I got to volume 7, it wasn’t difficult to see how they got there. I think when I first read volume 7, it just didn’t work as well without that context.

Ageha and Yukari are amusing characters. Ageha is rather hot-headed and speaks without thinking, or worse, saying things she doesn’t really mean. Yukari can be just as abrasive, saying exactly what he means, when he chooses to speak. He more often reacts first without full explaining why. This poor communication, or complete lack thereof, leads to misunderstandings between them. It’s not so bad at first, when the misunderstandings are Ageha getting the wrong impression about what Yukari thinks of her craftwork. When it gets into their budding relationship, it’s easy to see how this will only complicate things.

vb-rose-7Ageha and Yukari are the main couple, but Ageha seems to have plenty of suitors for Yukari to worry about. Mitsuya isn’t serious about his advances, but there are other men around who could be serious competition. Mamoru’s younger brother, Nagare has feelings for her and declares them over Christmas, while Ageha is talking to Yukari. His anxiety over Ageha being courted by other men is fun to watch. Ageha has her own things to worry about as she wonders if Yukari’s ex-girlfriend Kana, who he still works with, still has feelings for him.

Since the setting of this series is a wedding dress boutique, there are plenty of beautiful gowns. In volume 1, there is a gorgeous Chinese inspired gown I would have loved to have worn. The gown that Kana makes the corsage for in volume 7 is just elegant. Ageha’s handmade purses are both cute and useful. What I wouldn’t give for a friend that could make a custom bag.

V.B. Rose is a romantic comedy that is a lot of fun. Tokyopop originally licensed the series, and nearly published it complete. They released volume 13 the same month they shutdown, making this one of the most difficult volumes to find in English. The series was originally published by Hakusensha in Japan, a publisher that doesn’t have an established relationship with a US publisher. This title would be a perfect candidate for Viz Media’s Viz Select program. While I would prefer getting this series digitally, I do have to admit that Tokyopop’s early prints of the series were very nicely done with gold imprinting on the cover to make it extra sparkly! Viz Select has already picked up and published several of Tokyopop’s old titles digitally. V.B. Rose would be another great addition to this program. It is probably completely translated, and is a shojo title that would an ideal fit their Shojo Beat catalog.

Viz Licenses Shojo Titles Old and New

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, Viz Media has announced several licenses, with a bit of “something old, something new” to them. Three of the titles are Tokyopop rescues for the Viz Select line, and two are brand new licenses from mangaka who have already had titles released in the West to quite a bit of success.

The_One_I_Love_GN1 From Tokyopop, Viz Media continues their CLAMP releases with two of their titles returning; The One I Love and Wish. The One I Love is a one-volume collection of 12 short stories that tell stories about the many sides of love.  All of the stories are told from a woman’s perspective, and deal with the doubts, insecurities and ultimately the joy of love. It sounds like a fun series, though perhaps best taken in smaller doses. The romance may get monotonous, even for romance lovers. It will be released February 10th.

Wish_GN1 Wish is a four volume series that follows Shuichiro, who after saving an angel, Kohaku, from a tree one moonlight night, is offered a wish as a reward. Shuichiro refuses the wish, saying he can get what he wants on his own. But he and the angel soon find out there are some wishes that can not be granted on their own. This series is a typical bitter-sweet romance that has a happy ending of sorts, but the kind that Western readers are used to. The first volume will be released February 17th.

somedaysSomeday Dreamers is a two-volume series, and is not done by CLAMP. It is about Yume, a girl who wants to follow in the footsteps of her mother, and become a magic user. She practices her magic by helping people she finds in need; a struggling soccer player, the wrongly accused, and a student who wants to share a lunar eclipse with his teacher on cloudy night. While the story is about Yume working to be a full mage, there is a current of romance that is left unresolved. The art is as gentle as the story, and is one I’ve considered picking up several times. The first volume will be released February 24th.

qq-sweeperThe two brand new titles have not gone completely unnoticed. The first title, QQ Sweeper, is by Kyousuke Motomi, the creator of Dengeki Daisy. It was almost exactly a year ago when this new title was announced in Shogakukan’s Betsucomi magazine. The cleaning and sweeping of the series’ title seems to have a supernatural bend. Kyutaro Horikita is the cleaning expert of Kurokado High. The tall, dark, and handsome cleaner meets transfer student Fumi Nishioka, where he shows her how to clean the spirits from the school and also maybe her heart. I was already interested in this series because it was from Motomi, but the addition of a supernatural element only makes it more appealing to me. The first volume will be released in October.

idreamIdol Dreams is by Arina Tanemura, a very popular shojo artist. Viz Media has already published at least 7 of her titles. This series turns the premise of some old school magical girls on their ear. Chikage Deguchi is a 31-year-old office worker who feels she’s missed out on her chances for love and success. She wishes she could go back to a time when she was young and popular, and is given that chance when she takes an experimental drug that changes her appearance to that of a 15-year-old. She takes the opportunity to re-do things in her life, including becoming and idol. Besides changing up the old school magical girl formula, Idol Dreams appears to borrow from Case Closed, though that series doesn’t hold the license on getting younger, it’s just the first thing that comes to mind. I’ll check out this first volume if I get a chance when it comes out in November.

These were some good titles for Viz to pick up. I’m happy to see the new Motomi title. I was really hoping it would get picked up. Idol Dreams is new to me, and has my attention by starting the series with a mature woman as the lead. It will be interesting to see how her older self deals with the younger problems of a new generation. I’m looking forward to this round.

 

Viz Select Strikes Again

Viz Media has been bringing back a lot of older titles that have gone out of print. Most of the titles have been from former English publisher Tokyopop through Japanese publisher Kadokawa Shoten. Last week Viz announced another three titles from the Toykopop/Kadokawa Shoten licenses.

Mikansi_GN1Mikansei No. 1 is a two-volume series by creator Majiko, whose other titles include St. Lunatic High, which was also published under Viz Select, and Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion originally published here by Bandai. I really wouldn’t surprise me to see that one show up at some point. Mikansei No. 1 is about a girl named Neo who was born into the wrong century. She loves to sing and wear short skirts despite the more modest fashion of the 23rd century. Accidentally transported back in time to the 21st century, she teams up with the handsome Saya, and becomes half of singing duo. But to make it big, they need to put on a concert. It’s up to Neo to keep time on their side. At two volumes it might be interested in checking it out. I didn’t care for St. Lunatic High, her only other original title I’ve read, but this one sounds like it has potential.

Hands OffHands Off! is an eight volume shojo series by Kasana Katsumoto, whose other works lean toward the smutty side of josei, so needless to say, we won’t be seeing anything else from her any time soon. Hands Off! follows Kotarou Oohira, a boy with a clueless touch-he can transmit a kind of ESP through physical contact. He accidentally give it to his cousin Tatsuki, and comes to realize there more to his gift than he imagined. I’m not quite sure what to think of this series. I’ve seen volumes of it go by on trading site such as Paperback Swap, so it definitely got around. The action and intrigue does sound interesting, the gentle boy touching, not so much. This series also had a prequel, Hands Off: Don’t Call Us Angels.

SgtFrog-01The title I’m most excited to hear about it Sgt Frog by Mine Yoshizaki. Tokyopop released 21 volumes, with the 21st being among the last titles released by the company. Sgt. Frog follows the misadventures of Sgt. Keroro, a frog-like alien and his platoon of misfits from the planet Keron. Sent to Earth to conquer it, instead, Keroro blows his cover and loses his top-secret weapon, cutting him off from his home world. On top of that, he’s lost his platoon!  He makes a deal with the Hinata family, and in exchange for doing chores around the house, he gets his own room from which to plot his next secret plan to take over the world. And build Gundam models. Sgt. Frog is a great gag manga with a crazy cast of characters. I will definitely pick up the volumes I’m missing of this series. Maybe I’ll go back and read all the previous volumes in order to be ready!

PR: Vizmanga End of the Year Update

Viz Media ends 2014 for their expected end of the year sale of their digital titles and some unexpected new Viz Select titles. The sale is their typical $2-off-to-bring-pricing-back-down-where-it-should-be promotion and lasts through January. You know what to do with that Christmas money, and even Amazon gift cards as they seem to have extended the promotion to their site. Read on for all the details.

Continue reading PR: Vizmanga End of the Year Update

PR: Viz Media November Digital Manga Update

I wonder if Viz has a catalog of Tokyopop former releases and they just check off the books they want, or if they are going from a list from the staff, either way, they are adding even more to their Viz Select line, so they must like how the sales are doing.

VIZ MEDIA ANNOUNCES SUBSTANTIAL NOVEMBER DIGITAL MANGA UPDATE AND

SPECIAL PRICING ON SEVERAL POPULAR SERIES

Catch Digital Launch Of 6 Hot New Manga Series And Updates To More Than 20 Ongoing Titles; Special November Pricing On 5 Fan-Favorite Series And Titles To Debut on ComiXology

NeonGenesis_GN14_CoverVIZ Media continues the drive into fall with the announcement of an array of digital manga updates and new series debuts for November.

Fans and readers can catch today’s launch of two new series debuts including creator Aya Shouoto’s paranormal shojo drama, KISS OF THE ROSE PRINCESS and the final volume of NEON GENESIS EVANGELION.

Other notable new digital series kicking off throughout the rest of the month include 3 titles from the VIZ Select imprint. Return to the world of CHIBI VAMPIRE with CHIBI VAMPIRE AIRMAIL on November 11th, savor the dark, demonic suspense of ZONE-00, which launches on November 18th, and former CLAMP artist/creator Tamayo Akiyama’s fantasy adventure series, MOURYOU KIDEN: LEGEND OF THE NYMPH, follows November 25th.

Fans are invited to take advantage of a limited time promotion running until November 30th offering up to 80% of on digital manga volumes from several acclaimed series from VIZ Manga and the VIZ Manga App. Check other partner sites for similar special pricing. Catch NARUTO Vols. 1-2 for only $1.99 each and Vols. 3-67 for only $4.99 each. Savor undead gothic manga drama with VAMPIRE KNIGHT Vols. 1-2 for only $1.99 each and Vols. 3-19 for only $4.99 each. ROSARIO + VAMPIRE SEASON I Vols. 1-2 are $1.99 each and Vols. 3-10 are available for $4.99 each; the series sequel, ROSARIO + VAMPIRE II, Vols. 1-2 are also offered for only $1.99 each and Vols. 3-13 for only $4.99 each. Also dive into the mafia comedy adventure NISEKOI with Vols. 1-2 for only $1.99 each and Vols. 3-9 for only $4.99.

VIZ Media is also pleased to announce a new addition on ComiXology from fellow publisher Kadokawa. Don’t miss exciting series including DEADMAN WONDERLAND and NEON GENESIS EVANGELION as well AI ORE, THE STORY OF SAIUNKOKU, and X that are accessible worldwide and/or wherever ComiXology is available. Also dive into more than a dozen additional manga titles also offered on ComiXology and published under the VIZ Select imprint such as CHIBI VAMPIRE, D.N. ANGEL, FATE/STAY NIGHT, FUTURE DIARY, LUCKY STAR, THE GIRL WHO LEAPT THROUGH TIME, LAGOON ENGINE, SUKI and more!

Catch the rest of the November digital updates to more than 20 other VIZ Media continuing titles including the exciting series finales of PHANTOM THIEF JEANNE (Vol. 5), MILLION TEARS (Vol. 2) and SUKI (Vol. 3), as well as the latest additions to a variety of other popular series such as BLEACH (Vol. 62), BLUE EXORCIST (Vol. 12), FOOD WARS! (Vol. 4), JOJO’S BIZARRE ADVENTURE: PART 1 – PHANTOM BLOOD (Vol. 2), LUCKY STAR (Vol. 5), ONE-PUNCH MAN (Vol. 5), TRINITY BLOOD (Vol. 9) and scores more.

Readers can enjoy all of these new manga titles that are available on VIZManga.com and the VIZ MANGA App for the iPad®, iPhone® and iPod® touch, Android-powered smart phones and 7” tablets. The titles may also be purchased through the Nook, Kindle, Kobo, ComiXology, iBooks and GooglePlay stores. These dynamic digital platforms offer fans the opportunity to explore and enjoy a massive catalog of new and classic manga titles that spans more than 2,300 volumes across over 200 different series.

New November Digital Manga Series Debuts:

KISS OF THE ROSE PRINCESS, Vol. 1 · Rated ‘T’ for Teens ·
DIGITAL MSRP: $6.99 (U.S. / CAN) · Available Now!

Anise Yamamoto has been told that if she ever removes the rose choker given to her by her father, a terrible punishment will befall her. Unfortunately she loses that choker when a bat-like being falls from the sky and hits her. Anise is granted four cards representing four knights whom she can summon with a kiss. But now that she has these gorgeous men at her beck and call, what exactly is her quest?!

CHIBI VAMPIRE AIRMAIL · Rated ‘T+’ for Older Teens ·
DIGITAL MSRP: $4.99 (U.S. / CAN) · Available November 11th!

Return to the world of CHIBI VAMPIRE in this special collection of short stories!

ZONE-00, Vol. 1 · Rated ‘T+’ for Older Teens ·
DIGITAL MSRP: $4.99 (U.S. / CAN) · Available November 18th!

In a world where humans and demons coexist under a fragile peace, change is coming…A mysterious drug, known only as “Zone-00,” seems to be causing demons all over Tokyo to lose control and revert to their old, violent ways. Enter two young students who stand on opposite sides of an ageless conflict. One a demon, the other an exorcist, they must now join forces to uncover the secret of “Zone-00” before it’s too late! From the artist of Trinity Blood comes a dark, suspenseful tale in which two centuries-old enemies must fight together to save humanity!

MOURYOU KIDEN: LEGEND OF THE NYMPH, Vol. 1 · Rated ‘T’ for Teens ·
DIGITAL MSRP: $4.99 (U.S. / CAN) · Available November 25th!

In a land submerged in a thousand years of fog, demons and nymphs do battle. Until one day, the fated meeting of sworn enemies unravels an intricate love story, and hurls Ayaka, the daughter of the deity, Reiki, into a voyage of discovery, and maddening love. Originally a member of CLAMP, the world’s bestselling manga studio, Tamayo Akiyama delivers and unforgettable fantasy adventure!

NEON GENESIS EVANGELION, Vol. 14 (SERIES FINALE!) · Rated ‘T+’ for Older Teens · DIGITAL MSRP: $6.99 (U.S. / CAN) · Available November 25th

Catch the grand finale to this groundbreaking sci-fi action series. The Third Impact has come. As the unbelievably massive form of Ayanami towers over the Earth, the Instrumentality Project enters its last stages. While the world shudders in terror as it is engulfed in a sea of LCL, Shinji’s consciousness merges with Lilith’s, and he searches his memories for a final understanding of himself and the fate of humanity. Digital edition also includes a special chapter not previously published! Print edition will be released in early 2015.

The free VIZ Manga App continues to be the top application for reading digital manga and features a massive library of the most popular series in the world. Through the innovative VIZ Manga digital platform registered users are able to use one account to view their purchased manga across more devices than ever. New series and volumes are added every Tuesday. Fans can also find these titles and more for the NOOK, Kindle Fire, and Kobo eReaders, as well as in the comiXology, iBooks and GooglePlay Stores.

All manga volumes are available for purchase and download in the U.S. and Canada within the VIZ Manga application starting from only $4.99 (U.S. / CAN) each and readers can also explore all titles with free Chapter 1 previews of every series. For more information, please visit VIZManga.com or www.VIZ.com/apps.

To learn more about VIZ Manga, please visit www.vizmanga.com.