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Posts Tagged Del Rey

PR: Kodansha and RH Transform U.S. Publishing Relationship

New York, NY – October 4, 2010 – Kodansha Ltd. and Random House Inc. have announced their plans to change and expand their manga publishing relationship in North America. The companies are shifting from a licensing relationship to a sales and distribution arrangement as of December 1, 2010.

The current relationship between Kodansha and Random House began in 2003, with the first titles debuting in 2004 under the latter’s Del Rey Manga imprint. Since then, more 500 volumes have been published, including many bestselling manga series.

Under the new arrangement, Kodansha’s subsidiary, Kodansha USA Publishing, LLC, established in 2008 and led by Yoshio Irie, will be publishing Kodansha-originated manga themselves directly in the U.S. English-language market with strong support from Random House Publisher Services (RHPS), Random House’s third-party distribution division. Del Rey Manga associate publisher Dallas Middaugh will remain with the program, transferring to RHPS.

“We are very excited to extend our relationship with Random House,” said Yoshio Irie, president and CEO of Kodansha USA Publishing. “Both companies see opportunity in the American manga market, and we look forward to working together to further the distribution and exposure of manga in the United States.”

“We are thrilled to have a publisher as distinctive as Kodansha USA Publishing join the Random House Publisher Services portfolio,” said Jeff Abraham, the division’s president. “Kodansha is one of the great worldwide publishing brands for the manga category, and we will do everything to support their efforts with our many booksellers and distributors who love selling manga titles.”

Del Rey’s ongoing manga titles which were licensed by Kodansha will be gradually taken over by Kodansha USA Publishing on a per-title basis.

Tokyo-based Kodansha established Kodansha USA Inc. on the occasion of their company’s 100th anniversary. Kodansha USA Publishing began by publishing Akira and The Ghost in the Shell in 2009 under the Kodansha Comics imprint. They plan to expand their strong line-up of manga under this exciting new collaboration with Random House Publisher Services.


No New Del Rey Titles After November 2010?

DelRey Manga

After checking this months Diamond Previews, I noticed that there were no new solicitations for DelRey manga. All that was listed were reoffered volumes of their previously published Avatar the Last Airbender and Ben10 graphic novel adaptations.

When I checked Amazon.ca for a sign of future books, no new titles were listed after November 2010 – a month which sees the final volume of Tsubasa and the brand-new series I Am Here!, as solicited in the previous edition of Diamond Previews. In fact, the only titles past November of this year appear to be a handful of titles curiously now listed for March 2013, such as Night Head Genesis (Vol. 03), Arisa (Vol. 02) and Sayonara Zetsubou-Sensei (Vol.09). The CLAMP in America book by Shaenon K. Garrity remains on schedule, though now delayed again until February 2011.

DelRey has been slowing their output lately, while still launching new series and putting out a fair number of titles each month. The recent layoff of marketing manager Ali Kokmen and their declining profile at conventions has had many fans worried about their status. The lack of new solicitations in the major comic distributors monthly catalogue is yet another addition to this uncertain situation.

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Review: Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicles (Vol. 27)

Reviewer: Lissa Pattillo
Tsubasa (Vol. 27)

Manga-ka: CLAMP
Publisher: DelRey
Rating: Teen (13+)
Release Date: August 2010

Synopsis: “The restart of time! Cut off by time, the travelers have arrived in Fei-Wang Reed’s dimension to get Sakura back. But Fei-Wang has been waiting for them, and they’re in for the ultimate fight. The witch Yûko finally brings into play that odd cylinder she’s had in her keeping, and what’s inside gives Syaoran the shock of his life!”

It’s time for another new volume of Tsubasa, and the penultimate chapter at that. It’s exciting, it’s dramatic, it’s mostly one giant magical showdown and… it’s downright confusing. It’s tough having a story so artistically engaging and brimming with emotion when it’s also one hampered irrefutably by a story that just doesn’t make a whole lot of sense at times.

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Review: The Last Airbender – Zuko’s Story

Reviewer: Lissa Pattillo

Authors: Dave Roman, Alison Wilgus
Artist: Nina Matsumoto
Publisher: DelRey
Rating: Teen (13+)
Release Date: May 2010

Synopsis: “When Prince Zuko dared to question authority, his father Fire Lord Ozai, banished him from the Fire Nation. Horribly scarred and stripped of everything he held dear, Zuko has wandered the earth for almost three years in search of his only chance of redemption: the Avatar, a mystical being who once kept the four nations in balance. Everyone he encounters believes that this is an impossible task, as the Avatar disappearance a century ago. But Zuko stubbornly continues the search. He must regain his honor, so his question is all he has left.”

Scarred by his Father and scorned by his people, Prince Zuko embarks on a quest to capture the now near-mythicized Avatar to regain his honour and be once again allowed home. Little here will trend new ground for those well-versed in Nickelodeon’s original animated series but superb writing and classy artwork combine to make this book a short but sweet one-shot that any fan of the series should keep an eye out for. Zuko’s Story takes a huge leap forward from the Avatar movie-verse (from where it garnered its inception) by taking a step back to Zuko’s past and doing so with more reminiscent style.

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Swag Bag for July 22nd 2010 – Evil Exes and Vengeful Counts

My usual Wednesday shopping had to be postponed until Thursday as I did an emergency replacement of my computer (warning to the masses: backing up your computer files is the best thing you can do for your technological-sanity) but a fan can never be kept from the bookstore for long!

Today specifically I first picked up Viz Media’s newest shoujo series, Dengeki Daisy. The plot doesn’t exactly wow me, and I haven’t read the artist’s previous work, Beast Master, but I’ve already hard lots of good things about this new story so I’m giving it a go! Thanks to a snazzy buy-one-get-one deal at Strange Adventures I was also able to snap up a copy of the third volume of Gankutsuou. While I haven’t read it through yet, just flipping through shows me this is going to be an entirely different, and considerably more disturbing, angle than the anime – yikes! And of course, I had to pick up a copy of the final volume of Scott Pilgrim.

While I never got a chance to visit the vendors for shopping purposes at last week’s Animinitime, I did stop by at the local Chapters to spend a convenient gift card I’d acquired. While there I also checked out the selection of French language manga. Such pretty design work! All with slipcovers and nice mini trim sizes. Also the selection was snazzy – over fifty volumes of Case Closed?! Very cool.

Chapters purchases included Calling, a boys’ love one-shot from BLU which sports an uke with very fluttering eyelashes; Cirque du Freak (Vol. 05) because my roommate adores the manga version (hasn’t read the books though) and I must admit it’s pretty darn fun to read; Flower in a Storm (Vol. 02) because despite thinking the first was sort of lame was interested when learning volume two was the end; Mad Love Chase (Vol. 04) because it’s Kazusa Takashima; and lastly, the fourth volume of my super guilty pleasure Zone-00 because it’s ‘awesome’. Ahhhhh the eye-candy in Zone 00!

As before, I encourage sharing of shiny manga purchases! What books made your swag bag this week?


Review: The Last Airbender

Reviewer: Lissa Pattillo

Writers: M. Night Shyamalan/Dave Roman/Alison Wilgus
Artist: Joon Choi
Publisher: Del Rey
Rating: Teen (10+)
Release Date: June 2010

Synopsis: “Waging a devastating war, the Fire Nation destroyed the harmonious balance among the four nations. The Air Nation isNomads are no more, and the Water Tribes and Earth Kingdom are on the verge of collapse. In such dire times, the Avatar, master of the all four elements, is expected to return bring balance to the world. But the Avatar has been missing for a hundred years. When teenagers Katara and Sokka of the Southern Water Tribe rescue a young boy frozen in an iceberg sphere, their lives—and his—are changed forever.”

Word is out and it isn’t pretty – M. Night Shyamalan’s live action adaptation of Avatar: The Last Airbender is a big whopping flop. A rushed plot, inaccurate details and beyond lacklustre acting has left both fans of the show and lovers of movies leaving the theatre in disarray. While the movie may’ve been a spirited stinker, it did at least inspire a few graphic novel adaptations that could yet make a little good of the enterprise. This book, The Last Airbender, is a direct take on the film’s version of the story and cast. Despite being bound by the screenplay of the film, could there yet be hope for this 128 page spin of the fan-favourite series? Eh… not so much.

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Start Your Pencils – NYAF 2010 Mascot Design Contest

NYAF 2010 - Mascot Design Contest

Covention season is upon us and that means a lot of things –  but for the sake of this post, it means art contests! New York Anime Fest (which is joining with New York Comic Con for the first time this year) has opened up its annual mascot design contest with snazzy prizes and a one month submission time.

“Announced May 1 at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s Sakura Matsuri and running until May 20th, Kinokuniya, theOtaku.com, Del Rey Manga, and the New York Anime Festival welcome artists and anime fans from around America to think about what “Anime”, “New York City”, and (because we’re in October) “Halloween”, mean to them and draw these thoughts into an original character. Whether it’s big, small, a towering mecha, or chibi, we want to see your entries!”

The grand-prize winner will not only have the fun of seeing their artwork used on all NYAF”s official merchandise but will also receive a copy of all the material the art is used on, 10 free passes to the event and 50 volumes of Del Rey manga!

All entries are due May 20th with the finalists announced on June 1st. Then, after a month of voting at their Kinokuniya bookstore in New York, the official grand-prize winner will be revealed at the end of June.

Good luck to all the entrants!


Review: XXXHolic (Vol. 15)

Reviewer: Lissa Pattillo

Manga-ka: CLAMP
Publisher: Del Rey
Rating: Teen (13+)
Release Date: April 2010

Synopsis: “Kimihiro is having some wish-granting success with his very first customer, but his first efforts are interrupted by a disturbing dream of witch Yuko vanishing forever. Even people Yuko has helped are saying they’ve never heard of her. Too bad there is no such thing as “just a dream” in Kimihiro’s universe…”

Easily being what could become one of the most memorable volumes of the series to date, the fifteenth volume of XXXHolic may not always be entirely coherent with its continued crossover calamities and abstract concepts, but like any volume of this generally artistic gem, once the ball gets rolling, prepared to be bowled over by it.

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Review: Yokaiden (Vol. 02)

Reviewer: Lissa Pattillo

Author/Artist: Nina Matsumoto
Publisher: Del Rey
Rating: Teen (13+)
Release Date: November 2009

Synopsis: “Yokai are Japanese spirits, and young Hamachi is fascinated by them. Now he continues his quest deep into the Yokai realm in the hopes of finding Madkap, the kappa he believes has killed his grandmother. Armed with nothing but a sacred rope and a lucky kappa’s foot, Hamachi has made two friends to help him on his journey: Lumi the talking lantern, and newly awakened, the umbrella that once belonged to his grandfather! Their first stop is the home of the legendary fox spirit the Ninetails, who promises to help in Hamachi’s quest if Hamachi can retrieve three lost items. But can Hamachi really find them, or does the Ninetails just want Hamachi to fail so he can keep the human boy as a pet?”

This book of Yokaiden opens with a handy exposition for those who may be picking up this second volume prior to the first; told via a short comic. Though perhaps a little taxing to those already familiar with the story, it shows the artist’s attention to audiences of both sorts and does so in a manner more entertaining than a simple paragraph recap. Regrettably the new material doesn’t feel nearly as ingenious.

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Review: Night Head Genesis (Vol. 01)

Reviewer: Lissa Pattillo

Author: George Iida
Manga-ka: You Higuri
Publisher: Del Rey
Rating: Older Teen (16+)
Release Date: November 2009

Synopsis: “The world is a lonely place for Naoto and Naoya, brothers with amazing psychic powers that set them apart from humanity. Their parents cast them out–and had them imprisoned in an exploitative research center. But after they make a daring escape from the institution, Naoya has a psychic vision of an even greater threat: a deadly plague that threatens the entire world!”

Reading like that paranormal save-the-world movie you’ve probably seen done a dozen times on VHS, Night Head Genesis is a one-dimensional race against time that pits psychics against scientists and two brothers against the world they’re trying to save. Del Rey and You Higuri ensure the visual packaging makes this book a no-brainer on the pick-up-and-flip-through scale but read at all deeper and you’ll find this modern day mystery is as transparent as the cover’s fan service.

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