MeruPuri is a short, sweet, funny romantic comedy that ran in LaLa magazine from 2002 through 2004, and has recently released its final volume in North America. It was written by Hino Matsuri, also known for her popular Vampire Knight series, which is currently running in LaLa as well.
The story is the fairy-tale romance of Hoshina Airi, a high-school girl with great expectations for the romance she hopes to someday have, based on the events of her favourite TV drama. Airi doesn’t know, however, that she is descended of a traitorous royal bloodline from the alternate-universe kingdom of Astale. When the prince of that world comes tumbling through Airi’s heirloom mirror seeking sanctuary, Airi doesn’t know just what she’s gotten herself into.
Worse, little Prince Aram has been beset with a curse – when in dark places, he ages into a teenager and loses his magic powers, and he requires a kiss from a maiden of his choosing to return to normal. Airi is unwilling to comply at first, but she finds herself being more and more drawn to the mysterious prince…
MeruPuri features some beautiful colour artwork as well as omake material from the artist, and is a bit predictable at times, but is overall a sweet story that features a few new concepts. Look for it the next time you need a quick shoujo boost!
Shojo Beat Official Website
Good news! Kobato, the latest manga series from powerhouse team CLAMP (xxxHolic, Card Captor Sakura, Magic Knight Rayearth) is coming to Newtype USA starting in the June 2007 issue. According to their press release, the series will run for a total of twelve months, with an installment in each monthly issue and plenty of colour illustrations. Kobato is still ongoing in the Japanese-language version of the magazine, as of this writing.
Kobato is sweet and perky, but also extremely naïve about the world around her. Her “mission” is to fill a mysterious bottle of hers with the suffering from people’s hearts. Among the hearts she heals, there will be a boy she will work for and bring happiness to, but she is forbidden to fall in love with him.
(Summary Source: Wikipedia)
It seems it’s already featured several crossovers from CLAMP’s other works, including Chobits and Tsubasa. Check out an issue of Newtype to see what it’s all about!
Okay, I admit it – this manga (and its corresponding anime) are the reason why I’ve been so terribly distracted. They swallowed me whole. I guess I’m not the only one, because it’s consistently been on the top sellers’ lists both in Japan and North America, with the animated version making TV Asahi’s polls on the top shows of all time. Who’d have guessed that a story about a host club of all things (not at all like real host clubs supposedly are, by the way; these are high schoolers) would do so well?
Mangaka Hatori Bisco has penned nine tankubon of these to date, with the English adaptation by Viz one month behind and no end in sight. It runs in LaLa magazine as well as Shoujo Beat on this side of the pond and has been going since 2003. This is not Hatori’s first title, but the humourous style of Ouran is a far cry from her previous works.
Fujioka Haruhi is a scholarship at Ouran Academy, an elite school for the very wealthy. After happening across the eccentric and incredible Host Club, a group of six boys with plenty of money and time to waste, Haruhi breaks a vase and, unable to pay for it, ends up in servitude to the Club, who exist to entertain affluent schoolgirls with too much time on their hands.
The problem – the Host Club, taking in Haruhi’s tomboyish appearance, believe her at first to be male, and after a makeover she finds herself in the dubious position of attracting customers to the club. When they do find out, they’re not sure – are they willing to out her and let her be noticed by the rest of the student population…or keep her for themselves?
This crazy romantic comedy manga will have you laughing out loud, especially with the special omakes included at the end of the volumes, and the hilarious captions scattered throughout. If you read anything this year, let it be this!
Hakusensha’s Official Site (Japanese)
Shojo Beat Official Site (English)
For Richer Or Poorer (Fansite)
Ohisashiburi! Looks like I’ll be back to posting starting this month, and since the comments on the D.N. Angel blog entry have just been piling up and volume 11 is newly released in English, that seemed like the most logical thing to update first.
Tokyopop put out the final volume of the series on August 23, 2006, a full eight months after the release of volume 10. Even if you’d given up hope, you should be able to find it by now! Unfortunately, that is the final book in the series – for now - and the anime (which has been licensed by ADV and is available in a subtitled box set) is long since finished. The series does end with a bit of a cliffhanger, unfortunately – mangaka Sugisaki Yukiru is currently working on a series for Shounen Ace called EDEN, and the last time D.N. Angel ran in ASUKA magazine was August 2005. It’s not known when or if the storyline will continue, but if I obtain any new information on it I’ll be sure to post here. It doesn’t look like the novels or the animation-manga will be translated into English either at this point.
In any case, someone asked for a link to buy the English volume 11 online; perhaps you found the book by now, but if not you can pick it up on Amazon. Someone else inquired about buying the sountrack; for that I’d recommend trying CDJapan or Amazon Japan (search “D.N. Angel” in English). Both offer international shipping and English navigation to some extent. A link back to the D.N. Angel sheet music article is here for those who haven’t seen it. And I can’t give you guys any info on where to download the manga, which is what some people are commenting and asking for – wouldn’t you rather buy it and have a copy you can take anywhere? Support the industry, especially if you all love D.N. Angel as much as you say you do!
Feel free to ask any other questions you have, and if they’re within my power to answer, I’ll make a post or update with the info!
Genvid L.L.C., the people who brought you the hit book Warriors of Legend: Reflections of Japan in Sailor Moon, are proud to announce their second major effort, a one-in-a-lifetime Tour of Tokyo based on the locations described in their book and seen in the Sailor Moon anime and manga series, to be held in June 2006.
The Warriors of Legend Tour of Tokyo is a for-fans, by-fans tour which promises devotees of the blockbuster series an inside look at the life of the characters in a way seldom experienced by even Japanese otaku. During the day, attendees will live out the moonlight legend, visiting dozens of sites that the characters lived and fought at (such as the real life Hikawa Shrine) as well as locations that formed some of the series’ spectacular backdrops to key moments (for example, the Tokyo Tower.) During the evenings and nights, they will journey to important cultural landmarks throughout the city of Tokyo, from Asakusa to Zojoji Temple, Akihabara to Shinjuku Station.
That sounds fantastic! For those fans who are in the area (or want to go enough to GET to the area) this sounds like the chance of a lifetime. For more info, check out the Warriors of Legend website!
Source: Anime News Network
The final volume of the three-tankubon series Princess Ai hit store shelves yesterday, after a 7-month gap since the second book. Fans will be glad to see the long-awaited conclusion of this great little series, which was co-created by American rocker Courtney Love and mangaka Misaho Kujiradou, with character designs by Paradise Kiss’ Yazawa Ai. If you like gothic shoujo (as Tokyopop phrases it!) or even if you’re just looking for something different, Princess Ai delivers without being too drawn-out.
Hm, I should review it sometime, I’d better reread it…
The following new Tokyopop English manga titles have been confirmed by Anime News Network for July release:
Elemental Gelade (Erementar Gerad)
Kuro no Kishi
Yorozuya Tokaido Honpo
Le Potrait de Petit Cossette
Strawberry Marshmallow (Ichigo Mashimaro)
Boys Over Flowers (In Japanese known as Hana Yori Dango (花より男子) is a manga series written by Yoko Kamio. It was serialized in the bi-weekly anthology magazine, Margaret, which is aimed at high-school-age girls. The manga series ran continuously from October 1992 to September 2003, and has been collected into 36 volumes. Recently, the series has started to be released in a deluxe edition (larger pages and with all the color artwork from the magazine reproduced).
As of this writing, the story has been adapted in Japan into an anime TV series, a live-action television drama, an animated one-shot OVA, and a live-action movie. It has also served as the basis for a live-action drama TV series from Taiwan called Meteor Garden, which has spawned off an idol-singer group, F4. Also, an all-new Japanese live-action drama series premiered on October 2005 on TBS. The live-action drama was completed in December 2005, spanning 9 full-hour episodes.
Tsukushi Makino (牧野つくし Makino Tsukushi), a working-class girl, attends an elite elevator school called Eitoku Academy, populated by children from rich, high-society families. She is the “weed” of the school surrounded by all the rich kids including the “Flower” Four (F4). The F4 leader and son of the wealthiest, most powerful family in Japan, Tsukasa Domyoji (道明寺 司 Dōmyōji Tsukasa), takes an interest in Tsukushi, because she is the only girl at Eitoku who doesn’t fawn over him. However, his hot-headed nature and bullying ways are originally a major turn-off for Tsukushi, who has her sights set on someone else.
Official Anime Site
Hana Yori Dango Portal
, complete title Full Moon wo Sagashite
(満月をさがして, meaning Searching for the Full Moon), is a shoujo manga and anime series by Arina Tanemura. The kanji in the Japanese title are read “furu mun” (i.e. Full Moon) and not “mangetsu” or “mitsuki”. The full title is always used in Japan whereas in the U.S. the full title is present only on the front cover of the manga.
Originally this manga was serialised in Ribon, a Japanese magazine for girls. As of 2004, it has become a completed series with a total of seven volumes, and an artbook. The manga is published in English by Viz Media with translations by Tomo Kimura. As the manga began to gain popularity, an anime version of the story was simultaneously made and completed before the manga’s ending. Produced by Nihon Ad Systems, the anime is one of the most popular series, enjoying high ratings. It aired on TV Tokyo and has yet to be licensed outside Japan.
Full Moon focuses on a 12-year old girl named Mitsuki Koyama (神山満月 Kōyama Mitsuki). While Mitsuki is a talented singer, and indeed dreams of becoming a pop idol, she is afflicted by throat cancer, which seems curable only through surgery that will destroy her voice. One day she discovers two shinigami, Takuto and Meroko, the “Negi Ramen” or “Onion Noodles”, whom only she can see. These shinigami tell her she has but one year left to live. She doesn’t look old enough to be a singer, so she makes a deal with one of the shinigami, Takuto, to transform her into a 16-year-old body who goes by the stage name of “Full Moon” in order to achieve her dream of becoming a singer. Not only does she become older, but when she is in this form her throat is healthy, and she is able to sing without any difficulty.
To start a career as a singer, 16-year-old Mitsuki auditions in a singing contest. Even though there is much competition, she is able to win over the judges with her enthusiam for singing and her good voice. Two years before the shinigami came to her, she promised Eichi, a boy she met in an orphanage, that they would both achieve their dreams together. Eichi wanted to become an astronomer and she wanted to become a singer. Since she found out she is fated to die, she wants to achieve her dream and meet Eichi. In addition, Eichi has emigrated to America and is uncontactable. Mitsuki hopes that one day her songs will be heard by Eichi who will come back to her so they can be together again.
Full Moon wo Sagashite – Tsubasa ga habataku kagiri ~
~*~ Full Moon ~*~
Dreaming Of… (Fanlisting)
Descendents of Darkness, or Yami no Matsuei, is a manga series created by Matsushita Yoko in 1995. The series was published in the bimonthly publication Hana to Yume through 2003. It is currently on hiatus, and is set to resume publication next year. Much of the manga has also been released in 11 tankobon. In North America, the series is currently being translated by Viz Comics. In 2001, it was adapted into a short anime that was 13 episodes long.
Yami no Matsuei revolves around the Shinigami, or Gods of Death. Shinigami are employees of Meifu, the land of the dead. It is their job to collect the souls of those who should have died but haven’t, or those who have died but still linger in the living world. Shinigami work in pairs, with each pair assigned to a specific section of Japan. The main characters of YnM are Tsuzuki Asato and Kurosaki Hisoka, the Shinigami of the Kyushu region.
YnM is a shoujo manga, aimed primarily at girls. Like many shoujo manga, it has elements of shounen-ai to it. This is mostly seen in the relationships between Tsuzuki, Hisoka, and Muraki, although there are also elements in Tatsumi’s feelings toward Tsuzuki. However, there are no official romances between any of the characters.