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News, reviews and features with a focus on manga, self-published works and a Canadian perspective. Enjoy fulfilling your Kuriousity!

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Posts Tagged Global Manga

Review: Kuriousity (Vol. 01)

Reviewer: Lissa Pattillo

Manga-ka: MTCopyright
Publisher: Radially Spoof
Rating: Teen (13+)
Release Date: April 2010

Synopsis: “Always up to her nose in manga and eager to share her opinion, it was no surprise to her friends when Kuri decided to tackle the word of reviewing. But with too many books and not enough hours in the day, she soon realized she’d need some major help to tackle them all. It doesn’t take long for her to gather together an amazing assortment of individuals and each with their own unique charms- but now Kuri’s suddenly got more than books on her desk! Anime conventions, forum trolls, scanlation scourges and more – but with deadlines looming, book stacks towering and a million distractions out to thwart them, can the manga crew keep up with their workload or will they need more than luck to help them fulfil their kuriousity?”

A book about manga reviewing, convention planning, manga fans just hanging out and talking about what they love… what madness is this? Brilliant madness – or at least a highly entertaining kind.

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Review: Twilight the Graphic Novel (Vol. 01)

Reviewer: Lissa Pattillo

Author: Stephanie Meyer
Manhwa-ga: Young Kim
Publisher: Yen Press
Rating: Teen (13+)
Release Date: March 2010

Synopsis: “When Isabella Swan moves to the gloomy town of Forks and meets the mysterious, alluring Edward Cullen, her life takes a thrilling and terrifying turn. With his porcelain skin, golden eyes, mesmerizing voice, and supernatural gifts, Edward is both irresistible and impenetrable. Up until now, he has managed to keep his true identity hidden, but Bella is determined to uncover his dark secret…”

Twilight: a multi-million dollar investment in the frothing hearts of fan girls around the world. Many have read the original novel series and infinitely more have at least heard of it. With the live-action films already taking their crack at adapting these popular novels, it’s now the comic world’s time to have a go with Stephanie Meyer holding tight on the reigns.

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RePlay Creator Christy Lijewski Launches Samurai Host Club

Webcomic of interest alert – Christy Lijweski, creator of the recently concluded RePlay (published by Tokyopop) has put up the first few pages of her new webcomic, Samurai Host Club.

“Assassins, Mafia wars, gunfights, massive bleeding, hookers and hosts. Maybe a samurai or two thrown in for good measure. Mature content for violence, language, sex and other hot sh–.”

Not much there so far in its infancy but still well worth a look-see for those who enjoyed her gritty characters, sharp art style and well dressed guys with guns in past works. While I don’t personally read many web comics, I’ll definitely be keeping my eye on this one. You can also see more of Lijewski’s artwork on her DeviantArt page, including promotional images for Samurai Host Club.

Yen Press Seeking Proposals for Yen Plus

Yen Press Wants You!

Yen Press has had submission guidelines on their website for some time now but in their most recent issue of Yen+, they’ve published a more specific call for proposals from artists:

“Are you a professional artist working in a style heavily influenced by manga? Then YEN PLUS wants to talk to you! One of the primary aims of a manga anthology is to help to develop talent at a professional level, and YEN PLUS is no different. Going forward, we are going to be featuring short stories commissioned from professional artists and developed with the YEN PLUS editorial staff in the magazine. The goal is to give creators a feel for working with us (and vice versa), a sense of the experience of serialization in a monthly anthology, as well as exposure to a broad reading audience.

It’s worth pointing out that this is not intended to be a “pitch” for a long-running manga series. This is simply an exercise. YEN PLUS would likely request, among other things, first serial rights for inclusion in the magazine, the rights to display the work on our website promotionally as well as the first option to develop the concept with you into a longer project in the event of an enthusiastic response to the work. (It may not be a pitch, but you never know…SOUL EATER started out as a short story just like this!

Interested? Here’s what you need to do: Send a proposal for a 30 page manga story along with 5 to 10 completed sequential renderings of that story to the editorial staff of Yen Press.”

Karen already sums up what makes this sound like a pretty sweet deal for up-and-coming artists over at Japanator. Though there isn’t a lot mentioned here contract-wise, it does sound like Yen Press is more open to allowing creators to maintain rights to their work plus the proposal length sounds great – a perfect size for the editors at Yen to get an idea of what you’re proposing without the artist needing to spend months of their life putting an entire finished piece together. Amen to that!

Yen Press is currently publishing Canadian-creator Svetlana Chmakova’s Nightschool in their Yen+ anthology alongside their continuously growing library of books from around the world.

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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Art for Aid – Artists Sell Original Artwork For Haiti Donations

Since the earthquake that struck Haiti quickly nabbed media attention around the world, support has been flooding in from every corner of the globe. The internet is certainly no exception and many artists have opened commissions and auctions to sell their services and work for charitable donations in support of Haiti.

Two well known manga-style artists have also done just that. Christy Lijewski (artist of RePlay!, published by Tokyopop) and KOSEN (artist of Saihoshi, published by Yaoi Press) have each put up a piece of their original artwork on eBay with all proceeds going to a Haiti support charity. Great art for a great cause!

Christy Lijewski is selling the original copic-coloured artwork commissioned by Tokyopop for the cover of the third and final volume of RePlay. The auction ends January 23, 2010.

KOSEN is selling an original copic-coloured drawing of the character Yinn from their boys’ love fantasy series, Saihoshi. The auction ends January 19, 2010.

Artist Call for Dragon Girls and Nightschool Students

Dragon Girl and Nightschool

Two new contest calls are out for artists so sharpen your pencils and dust off those tablets (though may you artists out there keep your tablet much better dusted than mine!).

First off Viz Media is looking for fan art submissions for upcoming volumes of St. Dragon Girl. Via Twitter (@viz_media): “AM: Calling All Artists! Fan Art needed for future volumes of St. Dragon Girl manga.” The most recent volume of St. Dragon Girl is volume five and it’s available on store shelves this week.

Meanwhile over on her DeviantArt journal, Svetlana Chmkova is holding a contest for fan art to potentially appear in the next volume of her currently running series, Nightschool. Winners will be published in the third volume of Nightschool, due out from Yen Press in April 2010, and will be sent signed copies of the book when it’s released. All entries must be submitted to Yen Press by the fast-approaching deadline of December 28th along with a fanart consent form available on their webpage.

Yen Press To Publish Manhwa of James Patterson’s Daniel X

Daniel X

A press release out today revealed that Yen Press will be releasing a manhwa version of James Patterson’s Daniel X.

Readers will likely recognize the author as the creator of Maximum Ride, which Yen Press is currently releasing an adaptation of with artist NaRa Lee. The artist for Daniel X will be Seung-Hui Kye whose series Recast was published by Tokyopop. Hachette, Yen Press’s parent company, is releasing the original Daniel X novels, which are science fiction aimed at older teens.

“Fifteen-year-old alien hunter Daniel X is on a mission to finish the job that killed his parents to wipe out the world’s most bloodthirsty aliens on The List. At the number-one spot, The Prayer is Daniel’s ultimate target. With mind-blowing skills like telepathy and the ability to transform and create, Daniel’s got more than a few tricks up his sleeve. Along with his friends Willy, Joe-Joe, Emma and Dana, Daniel hunts down the aliens on The List one by one. But as he battles towards his top target he can’t forget one thing: he’s got a host of aliens to fight, but on their lists there’s only one name at the top… and that’s his.”

The Daniel X manhwa will originally be serialized in Yen Press’s Yen Plus anthology with the first volume to be released in summer 2010.

So what do you think? Personally I was more happy to hear in the press release that Maximum Ride has proven so successful for Yen Press – the excitement of another James Patterson series is lost on me since I’d never heard of the author before Yen Press announced Maximum Ride. Still, I’ve heard a lot of good things about Seung-Hui Kye’s Recast, and having never had the chance to read it, will be vaguely interested to see how Daniel X turns out, even if it is being built out of what sounds like a mountain of cheese (see plot synopsis above).

Review: Nightschool (Vol. 02)

Reviewer: Lissa Pattillo

Creator: Svetlana Chmakova
Publisher: Yen Press
Rating: Teen (13+)
Release Date: October 2009

Synopsis: “Schools may lock up for the night, but class is in session for an entirely different set of students. In the Nightschool, vampires, werewolves, and weirns  learn the fundamentals of everything from calculus to spell casting. Alex is a young weirn whose education has always been handled through home schooling, but circumstances seem to be drawing her closer to the Nightschool. Will Alex manage to weather the dark forces gathering?”

Alex begins her quest to discover what happened to her sister, a staff member at the city’s secret night school, who mysteriously vanished leaving not even a memory behind in the minds of most. Her sister’s place of employment is the first stop, but to wander the school halls, Alex must first become a student.

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Yaoi Submissions, Schedules and a Staggering Zombie

Boys' Love Snippets

Some boys’ love news snippets today with submission closures, convention schedules and an undead publisher still looking to make a return:

Yaoi Press has recently updated their info page to inform propestive creators that their submissions are currently closed. This is a uncommon state for Yaoi Press which has spent the majority of its time open to new stories by writers and artists. The page does however offer up an honest and open look at why their submissions are currently closed and assurance that they still have previously submitted works on file.

Word has been circulating for a while about Digital Manga’s big yaoi title announcement, promising many happy fans, and that they’ll be making said-announcement at the upcoming Yaoi Con. Today Digital Manga has posted their Yaoi Con schedule including their industry panel and signing times for special guest, Makoto Tateno (see art above).

Digital Manga has also sent out a press release about signed and framed Makoto Tateno artwork which will be available for sale both at Yaoi Con and on their online shop, Akadot.

And lastly, in an odder turn of events, DramaQueen has updated its online shop to showcase what they’re calling a “Rebirth Sale”, offering up several of their back issue books for cheaper prices along with a message that suggests they’re still working on the comeback that they’ve promised for so long. Hmm… sounds sort of familiar.

I won’t beat the proverbial horse on this one but suffice to say DramaQueen hasn’t done anything to win readers’ sympathy or support in the past two years but I suppose it’ll still be interesting to see if they ever do release another book. Still, as much as I’m all for supporting the industry, it’s my honest opinion that shoppers should stay away from ordering through DramaQueen’s online website. The risk is simply too high that prospective buyers will only join the line of people still waiting for DQ to pay their dues.

Take me back to the top!