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RightStuf Warns of Boys’ Love Book Seizing at Canada Customs

RightStuf Warns of BL Book Seizing at Canada Customs

We have ketchup chips, Kinder Eggs and house the fantastic, and recently completed, Toronto Comics Art Festival, but even we here in Canada aren’t perfect. It saddened and concerned me to read this bit of news over the weekend, credit for which goes to Ash on Twitter.

RightStuf has posted the following warning on all four volumes of SuBLime‘s boys’ love series, Bonds of Dream, Bonds of Love by Yaya Sakuragi:

“Note: This item is banned in Canada, and will be seized by Customs if ordered.”

From what I can see, this is the only SuBLime title to have a note about being banned. We can assume it’s a note made based on a particular incident, though of course this wouldn’t be the first time we’ve heard negative stories about manga going over the border. Anime and manga have become buzz words of sorts for customs’ agent which see the youthful drawing of some characters, and sexual nature of others, reason to blanket the medium as pedophilia and pornographic in nature.

Bond of Dreams, Bond of LoveAs for Bonds of Dreams, Bonds of Love, I can see why they might ban it – with disclaimer I don’t believe in banning artwork like this – but it’s still not a series I’d ever viewed as being an obvious trouble-maker. Of course I speak from the viewpoint of a seasoned manga reader who is used to the distinctions of age and art style. One of the leads in this series is a teenager who very forwardly pursues an older man whom he’s known since he was very young. Though the young one is the more aggressive of the two,  it still follows a budding sexual relationship between an adult and a teenager and the age discrepancy is heavily emphasized in the way they’re drawn.

Interestingly, I actually received volume three of this series from RightStuf just a couple weeks ago and didn’t have any issues. Then again, being buried among many other items certainly helped. The requirement to buy $250+ worth of material to get the free Canadian shipping from RightStuf ups the chance that any supposedly-risky material like this can glide through in similar fashion. Of course, this depends on if RightStuf will actually choose to deny** the ordering of these books from Canadians or leave it to the buyers’ own risk.

For Canadians looking for the books, who don’t want to risk border bans, you can still order the books via Chapters/Indigo, Amazon.ca and your local book stores via special order.

**May 16th Update: RightStuf has since updated the warning to the following: “Note: We cannot ship this item to Canadian addresses, and it likely will be seized by Customs if ordered.” So no more ordering even allowed for Canadians of these books anymore. An unfortunate turn of events, one that could set a very bad precedent for other material from one of the mediums’ most prominent supplier.

About the Author:

Lissa Pattillo is the owner and editor of Kuriousity.ca. Residing in Halifax, Nova Scotia she takes great joy in collecting all manners of manga genres, regretting that there's never enough time in the day to review or share them all. Along with reviews, Lissa is responsible for all the news postings to the website and works full time as a web and graphic designer.



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3 Responses

  1. luzzy says:

    I’ve ordered even more questionable manga before and I haven’t had a problem, granted, those have been from other retailers that they haven’t opened packages from yet. I’m a bit worried since I’m almost certain that they opened the box that rightstuf sent me last year, and another one with BoDBoL is due to come in September.

    I still have a few months left to decide what I’m going to do, but I really don’t want to take those books out of my order. Maybe they won’t open the box since rightstuf changed to fedex and started to charge Canadian tax. This is so ridiculous, I even saw one of the volumes in Chapters a few weeks ago.

    • RightStuf has updated again and given some more information to AnimeNewsNetwork, confirming that they’re not going to allow Canadians to purchase these items at all anymore. Very sad news indeed. And apparently there’s more than just these books, including some other boys’ love from both Digital Manga and SuBLime, so it looks like Canadians will not be able to use RightStuf as freely as before.

      The upside is the books themselves are in no way illegal – they simply were found by the wrong customs agent – so we can still order these books through Canadian retailers.

  2. […] Lissa Patillo with Kuriousity writes that RightStuf.com posted the following warning on it’s website with regard to Bond of Dreams: […]

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