By Shannon H
The manga release list this week has been culled back from the usual extravaganza we’ve been getting used to as of late. For me, the most exciting of the new books is without a doubt the newest volume of Fairy Tail, but I’ve already had a nerdgasm about that in this column, so you’re off the hook this week. At least as far as Fairy Tail is concerned. That doesn’t mean you are exempt from my elitist railing about what is a cut above the rest, though! This time you get to hear me talk about some under-the-radar manga-ka you probably should start paying attention to, so that you can like them before they’re cool. And be ironic about it, or whatever it is you hipster kids value these days.
The first flail-worthy artist to talk about is Natsume Ono, who is about as indie as manga can possibly get. Honestly, looking at her art you might not even recognize it as being Japanese, since the designs have a much more American underground look to them. But if you know a thing or two about the history and tradition of comics in Japan, you’ll know right away that Ono’s work is as manga as you can get. Her layouts and inking style are very indicative of a manga-ka, proving that manga isn’t made so much by shiny-shiny desu animu girls and giant eyes, but rather by the actual construction of the comic itself, with cinematic layouts, and traditionally inked and screen-toned images. Continue reading
By Mat K.
There may not be a whole of actual stuff coming in this week, but there are some pretty exciting titles. I think this time I’m going to start with a new title instead of your awaited favorites first. This week sees the release of Natsume Ono’s first series, (her previous books “Not Simple” and “Ristorante Paradiso” were one-shots), Gente. Ms. Ono is obviously a fan of languages and, it would seem, food. In this spin-off of Ristorante Paradiso you’re welcomed into Casetta dell’Orso, a quaint little restaurant in the heart of Rome. The food’s delicious, but the handsome staff of bespectacled gentlemen is the real draw. Follow these dashing men home and witness their romances, heartaches, hopes and dreams.
And I feel I have to report on the release of the first official Gossip Girl Manga: For Your Eyes Only. Written by Cecily Von Ziegesar, and Illustrated by HyeKyung Baek. The original Gossip Girl cast returns in a re-imagination of their high school days when Blair and Vanessa become unlikely roommates! Continue reading
By Mat K.
Hello boys and girls and welcome the Saint Patrick’s week. There’s not a whole lot going on in the manga department this week, but that is not to say there is nothing. There are a couple of new books that are definitely worth checking out. The first one up is Bunny Drop Volume 1 by Yumi Unita. The story goes a thirty year-old bachelor named Daikichi has to go to his grandfather’s funeral. He’s floored when he finds out gramps had an illegitimate child with a younger lover. While the whole family is shocked, the rest of the family seems to be embarrassed and not want anything to do with the poor silent girl. In a fit of angry spontaneity, Daikichi decides to take her in himself! But will living with this overgrown teenager of a man help Rin come out of her shell? And won’t this turn of events spell doom for Daikichi’s love life? Drama and wackyness ensue. This is definitely a side-step from your typical manga formula. Continue reading