Genkaku Picasso

Welcome to Kuriousity

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

SITE RETIRED - Thank you for the years of support and readership!

Posts Tagged Yuri

Seven Seas Licenses First Yuri of 2014, Citrus

Citrus

Seven Seas is a licensing force that feels like it can’t be stopped! And I’m certainly not going to get in their way (though I am having a little difficulty keeping up!). At the end of January, they announced what we can only hope is their first yuri license of the year:

Citrus – Saburouta

The plot of Citrus sounds like one of those anime-stereotype sis-cest stories ,only with two girls. While I usually avoid those kinds of series, it looks like I’ll be making an exception for this one. It’s a yuri – I must!

Citrus follows a young woman who’s never been in love, yet finds herself both annoyed and enthralled by the student council president at her new school. However, it turns out said-president is her new step-sister and, to top it off, the two are now living together.

The first volume of Citrus is scheduled for December 2014 and will retail at $15.99/CAN, $13.99/US.


One Peace Expands Genres with License of Yuri Series, Whispered Words

One Peace Branches Genres with License of Yuri Series, Whispered Words

One Peace Book is one of those surprise publishers who pops out of the woodwork with some great titles in tow. The last time I wrote about their manga licenses was for Black Bard and Smuggler, two titles I’m really looking forward and that are scheduled for this Winter.

This week ANN confirmed another new title that recently popped up from One Peace on Amazon.com/Amazon.ca:

Whispered Words – Takashi Ikeda

“Whispered Words is the story of two high school girls, Sumika and Ushio. One is in love with the other, but unable to confess. Both of them prefer girls, but Ushio likes cute and petite types while Sumika prefers the athletic outgoing girls. To complicate things, a cross dressing boy, Masaki, is in love with Sumika. What ever will happen to this mixed-up bizarre love triangle mess?”

Whispered Words is complete at nine volumes and had an anime adaptation that aired back in 2009. One Peace will be releasing the first volume in May 2014 for $16.95/US. Based on their previous titles this should equal about $17.95/CAN, but no price has been posted to the Canadian listing yet.

Whispered Words sounds amazing. The very concept of a yuri story where both the leads are attracted to women in advance of falling for each other, plus the addition of the cross dressing love-interest, earn this story two thumbs up from me in advance. The art also looks great – I love how simplistic but solid it is, and it makes for a nice change of pace from the super shiny, fluffy, shoujo style (no offence, Milk Morinaga, I still love you!) of other yuris we’ve gotten in English.

Oh, and the book is 472 pages long. A resounding yay for omnibus books! So, is it May yet?


Seven Seas Is On the Yuri Case with Milk Morinaga’s Gakuen Polizi

Gakuen Polizi

Seven Seas handed out a treat to manga readers yesterday with news that they’ve licensed a new yuri series:

Gakuen Polizi – Milk Morinaga

This currently two volume series is about a girl named Sasami Aoba who has always dreamed of becoming “a defender of justice”. Now an adult, she’s become a police officer and is given her first assignment – enter into a high school and look for troublemakers. When she arrives, her first culprit turns out to be another undercover police officer. Is she friend, foe or something more?

I’m already a big fan of Milk Morinaga, after reading her books Seven Seas’ has already released – Girlfriends and Kisses, Sighs and Cherry Blossom Pink (adapted by our own Shannon Fay!) – so Gakuen Polizi instantly becomes a must-buy for me. Her other works have been very high-school-romance-centric, and while this new one obviously has the same theme, the additional story of being undercover police officers makes me all the more curious. It sounds like a lot of fun!

Volume of Gakuen Polizi is scheduled for June 2014, with the second following in the Fall.


Manga on the East Coast at Animaritime 2013

Manga on the East Coast at Animaritime 2013

Apologies for the sudden unexplained absence, Kuriousity readers! This past weekend was Animaritime, an anime and video game convention that takes place yearly in New Brunswick. I’ve been a staff at this convention for a number of years and returned again for helping with its organization and to run a few panels.

This year was Animaritime’s ninth event and the first at its new location in Fredericton. The event saw a great increase in attendance and we were thrilled to welcome three incredible guests – Brad Swaile, Ed Chavez and Kumar Sivasubramanian. I absolutely loved getting to spend time with them. They were  all such personable, intelligent, experienced and kind individuals who I certainly hope enjoyed themselves as much we enjoyed having them there. And in case you guys read this, I drove past not one, but two, moose on the way home. It was the power of Canada Day!

My panels were all a lot of fun and I have so much love for the attendees who came. I saw a lot of familiar faces, and rooms full of new ones too. I hope everyone who attended liked my panels – [Boys’ Love], [Yuri], [Yaoi], Kumar Sivasubramanian’s [The Art and Business of Manga Translation] and [Manga!], where I was lucky enough to be joined by Ed Chavez and Kumar Sivasubramanian.

OPERAI also got to sit in on Ed Chavez’s Vertical Inc. panel and [Jonseing for Josei], where the manga know-how and title enthusiasm was high. Love for Vertical’s recently released Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin was especially notable. There’s also big title news is coming from Vertical Inc. soon – be excited! Be very excited! My lips are sealed until then though, sorry folks. But seriously. Excited. Thanks to Ed’s Josei panel, I also was quick to purchase a couple issues of the boys’ love magazine OPERA that I found in the Garage Sale, and am very pleased I did. The quality and diversity of the art and stories is beautiful, and it’s home to many of my favourite creators and series.

My thanks to the staff, volunteers, guests, hotel and convention centre staff, our sponsors and, of course, all the attendees for making this another fun Animaritime!


Swag Bag: Girls, Guys and Thermae Romae

Swag Bag

It’s a new Swag Bag post! And as the last was a month ago, we have some catching up to do.

Seven Seas’ omnibus edition of Kisses, Sighs, and Cherry Blossom Pink was one of my favourite purchases as of late. Yuri is uncommon enough, but after this release and Girlfriends, I won’t ever pass up an opportunity for more of Milk Morniaga’s work. I found this book tricky to get through. I related to these characters more than most in manga, so the book took considerable more emotional toll on me than I’m accustomed. It only speaks to their quality when in the right hands, however, and while it means I’ll likely never be able to write a full review for them, I have all the hopes in the world they continue to do well so we can get more.

Yen Press continues to make clever power plays for room on my bookshelves with a new set of shiny re-editions. This time it’s Kingdom Hearts Final Mix (Vol. 01-02) and Chain of Memories. Both are adaptations of the video games of the same name, products near and dear to my fangirl heart, and titles that Tokyopop originally published. While I already own the Tokyopop books, Yen Press’s new collected editions look and read great, plus have that new book smell. How could anyone resist? For more thoughts, you can read my review of Kingdom Hearts Final Mix.

A Devil and Her Love Song (Vol. 09) began my Viz Media purchases and was an enjoyable romp of beach time fun and character development. I reviewed another recent shoujo purchase, Dawn of the Arcana (Vol. 10), last weekend. Always the Queen of the crop, Sailor Moon (Vol. 11) was quick to enter the swag bag and carries us into the final, and possibly most emotionally intense, arc of the series.

Completing it’s final arc is Saturn Apartments (Vol. 07), which really surprised me with how dark it got for a while. I honestly didn’t know how it was going to turn out, which is always the best way to read something. All surprises! Much less of a surprise were Attack on Titan (Vol.01) and No. 6 (Vol. 01) from Kodansha Comics, since I’ve already seen the anime versions. But I love them both, Attack on Titan in particular, so I had to buy the manga of each.

Thermae Romae (Vol. 02)It was super shonen time with the newest volume of Toriko (Vol. 16). It’s continuing to be a little disorienting following the series both in the collected form and as new chapters come out via Shonen Jump. The two haven’t overlapped yet, but it is neat seeing what comes, what’s been and wondering what could possibly fill the gap. Less suspenseful is Pokemon Black & White (Vol. 10) but it’s always cute and fun.

Speaking of cute and fun, though in entirely different ways, I was thrilled to finally pick up a copy of Thermae Romae (Vol. 02). This series is amazing, both in the surprise of something with this plot simply existing, but also in how well it’s executed. This series continues to be hilarious and educational, not to mention brilliantly packaged by Yen Press. If you haven’t already, make sure you buy these gems while you can!

And I finished this month’s purchases off with some boys’ love – Bonds of Dreams, Bonds of Love (Vol. 04) and Blue Morning (Vol. 01). Bonds of Dreams, Bonds of Love is now over and went out the same way in came in – funny and full of enjoyably horny hijinks. Blue Morning starts a brand new series and one that’s pretty much the polar opposite in tone. I found Blue Morning a bit dull as it’s dark mood almost suffocated it, but now with the characters set-up, I’m looking forward to seeing more plot progress in volume two.

That does it for this week’s Swag Bag. As always, feel more than free to share what purchases you’ve made recently and if you’d recommend them!


Swag Bag: Biz With Viz, Passion and Perils

Swag Bag: Biz With Viz, Passion and Perils

It’s been March since the last Swag Bag! Well that won’t do, now will it? While my post about TCAF outlined a bunch of my most recently purchased comics, there’s been lots of manga bought between the last Swag Bag and that post. Because I’m too lazy to go through my bookshelves to find each and every one, let’s take a look at some notables!

Always the must have buy is Sailor Moon (Vol. 10) which I’m loving more and more every volume. This point in the story was broadcast only briefly on television, and these manga volumes were more difficult to find, so while I’m familiar with the story, it all feels more fresh and new and full of surprises since I have less familiarity with it. Eternal Sailor Senshi!

Then it’s my why-do-I-keep-buying-this-series with Dawn of the Arcana (Vol. 09). Loki keeps getting the short end of the stick, and I find the relationship between Nakaba and Cesare so lacking in chemistry. I think it must be some tiny sliver of hope Loki gets a happy ending that keeps me reading. I hope I’m rewarded for my diligence…

Much more satisfying were new volumes of Bleach (Vol.56), Toriko (Vol.15) and A Devil and Her Love Song (Vol.08). Toriko is still one of my favourite manga series running now, though I’m a little sad to see it dissolve to chapter upon chapter of one on one fight scenes in the current issues of Shonen Jump. On the flip side  the current chapters of Bleach have been really great – actually super relevant and interesting flashbacks!

And last up from Viz Media recently was Pokemon Adventures (Vol.16), which continues the adventures of these two new Pokemon trainers who are really, really entertaining. Flip those gender roles! The male trainer is obsessed with making Pokemon beautiful, while the female trainer is a wild girl (like Tarzan wild) who wants her Pokemon to be the strongest.

In other worlds of young people doing interesting things – I picked up Arisa (Vol.10) where we finally know who the King is. There are still some motivations left to be explored, but I’m glad the one secret is finally out in the open. It’s more classic mysteries on-going in Young Miss Holmes (Vol.03-04) where the adorable lead makes it a joy to read, even when plot itself gets a little bogged down in details.

Mobile Suit Gundam the Origin: Activation (Vol. 01)And the biggest buys recently were Mobile Suit Gundam the Origin: Activation (Vol. 01) when it came out back in April, and The Passion of Gengoroh Tagame this past weekend. Both had amazing production values – really nice work done on the design and packaging. I wasn’t sure how I’d like the Gundam manga but actually really, really liked it. As the original Gundam story, it felt simple and streamlined while containing everything that makes the franchise so popular. Very easy to read, and I look forward to more. Passion was also great, but in a very different way. Gengoroh Tagame’s work is always shocking, and I was really curious to see which of his works would be in this book. Picture Box did not hold back!

And lastly during my visit to Toronto, I picked up some out of print books from The Beguiling. Hollow Fields (Vol.01), First Love (Vol.01) and In These Words (Vol.01). Sadly I doubt I’ll ever see second volumes of First Love and In These Words, which is sad because they were both great reads and I’ve been looking for them a while. I also bought two new bara anthologies which star many of the artists we’ll see in Picture Box’s Massive anthology next Spring.

That does it for this week’s Swag Bag. As always, feel more than free to share what purchases you’ve made recently and if you’d recommend them!


Manga Minis: Bye-Bye-Bye, SuBLime’s Boys’ Love Sync and Vertical goes Digital

Manga Minis: Bye-Bye-Bye, and SuBLime's Boys' Love Sync

We’re saying some sad good-byes to a couple things first in today’s mini news round-up, then cap things off with some interesting pieces of digital news to lighten things up at least a little:

 Seven Sea‘s Adam Arnold has responded to a fan’s inquiry to the status of their series, Blood Alone. Because of a publisher switch-up, the title is currently not available for Seven Seas to license past where it’s already released. With Blood Alone now owned by Kodansha, Seven Seas doesn’t see the license availability changing because of Kodansha’s own English branch. The last volume of Blood Alone published in English was volume six in April 2012. (News credit to Conner)

I really liked this series, so it’s sad we’ll likely never see volume seven published in English. I’ll keep my fingers crossed though! Series look so lonely sitting unfinished on the shelf…

Works

 Erica Friedman of ALC Publishing has published a post  announcing her decision to cease future publications. ALC Publishing has published several yuri books and, up until JManga’s recent shutdown, was collaborating with the website to release several yuri series digitally. Erica cites reasons including a poor buying market, fans lack of interest in digital titles and a lack of support from North America’s largest publisher of yuri, Seven Seas.

It’s a real shame when any publisher is forced to pull the plug for reasons beyond their control, and Erica’s worked very hard to cater to a niche market over the years. As a reader and collector of yuri, I’ve enjoyed ALC’s previous titles and I’m grateful that Erica will still be promoting the genre and sharing her thoughts via her website, Okazu (which has recently gotten an address change, so update those links folks!).

 SuBLime announced a new project in late February – a joint manga and light novel release that will be simultaneously released in Japan and in English. The title is Into Illusion, written by Reiko Yoshihara, the author best known for Ai no Kusabi. The artist for the manga is Ryo Tateishi, whose work on the cover provided by SuBLime is enough to make any boys’ love fan interested! You can check out their post for the eye-candy and more information. This series is scheduled to start at the end of April.

 And lastly, keeping on the digital train, Vertical Inc. will be releasing a number of their series for digital purchase starting this Spring. The current planned titles are Twin Spica, The Drops of God, and 7 Billion Needles with availability to be made on Amazon’s Kindle, Apple’s iBookstore and the NOOK. This is good news for those who prefer their collections condensed digitally, plus Vertical has previously said that their Twin Spica series is already going out of print so this offers it a second lease at readership life. (Credit for the news goes to AnimeNewsNetwork)


Otaku USA: On The Shelf – October 3rd, 2012

Otaku USA: On The Shelf - October 3rd, 2012

The first volume of Girl Friends is out! At last! I’ve been wanting to read this in English for a long time and I’m thrilled Seven Seas has given us the opportunity. The omnibus format is great too – can’t complain about nearly 500 pages of yuri now can we? Girl Friends is also a special manga for Kuriousity as well with the English adaptation written by our very own, Shannon Fay!

Seven Seas has the bulk of this week’s releases including two other omnibus volumes. You can check out the complete list with more of my stunning commentary at my On The Shelf article for Otaku USA.

Dance in the Vampire Bund (Vol.13) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Girl Friends: Complete Collection (Vol.01) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Pokémon Black & White Box Set [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Venus Versus Virus Omnibus (Vol.03) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]
Witch Hunter Omnibus (Vols.03-04) [Amazon CAN, Amazon US, RightStuf]


Seven Seas Announces License of Milk Morinaga Short Story Collection

Seven Seas Announces License for New Milk Morinaga Yuri

New manga licenses! While Anime Weekend Atlanta is taking place this weekend, Seven Seas preempted the convention with a manga license they confirmed with Anime News Network – Milk Morinaga’s Kisses, Signs, and Cherry Blossom Pink.

This is the second title by Milk Morinaga to be licensed in English, the first being her series, Girl Friends. KSCBP is another yuri series, but instead of the linear Girl Friends, is a collection of fourteen short stories. Seven Seas will release them all in one book (approx. 320 pages) in June 2013.

“Sakuraki Girls High—an all girls school where interrelated tales of love occur. In “Even if We’re Not Friends,” Nana and Hitomi have been dear friends since childhood, but when Nana gets into the exclusive Sakuraki High while Hitomi doesn’t, their true feelings for each other emerge. In “The Summer Closest to Heaven,” Natsuka is a ghost who resides at the school, still in love with one of the living students who is now the school nurse. In “A Kiss, Love, and a Prince,” Narumi gets her first kiss from Tachiba in the school play, and is shocked at being kissed by a girl.”

Having just recently finished Seven Seas’ very shortly upcoming edition of Girl Friends (Vol.01), this announcement makes me doubly excited. I really loved Milk Morinaga’s writing – it was definitely one of the more emotionally thought out and ‘real’ works I’ve read in manga. Ah the internal dramatic s of love. I’ve long since been a fan of her artwork thanks to a couple Japanese editions I own (and alas could not understand until now!), and let me assure you that it’s wonderful. Seven Seas also did a great job with the book, barring a few unfortunately placed little typos, so I’m happy to see this new Milk Morinaga title in their hands. It’ll be a long wait until next June!


The Con Staff Countdown – Animaritime 2012

Animaritime 2012

Kuriousity had a bit of an unexpected hiatus there for a couple weeks as I join my fellow staffers in the last month rush for preparing for the upcoming Animaritime. It’s the only anime & gaming convention in Eastern Canada and suffice to say there’s a lot of work to be done before reg lines open on June 29th!

Along with being staff, I also run a number of panels at the event. This year I’ve got four returning panels:

• Boys’ Love
• Yuri
• Yaoi (18+)
• Manga! Manga! Manga!

I think all the titles are pretty self-explanatory :) Fellow Kuriousity-contributer, Andre, is also veteran staff of Animaritime and will be hosting his Anime Trivia panel, as well as scheduling all the anime showings. Our schedule is jam packed with events this year from volunteers, staff and guests like never before. I’m tired just thinking about the three-day madness schedule but twice as excited. Also my huge thanks to our sponsors, including Vertical Inc. and Yen Press.

Updates will continue to be bit a sparse until after the con ends but there’s nothing quite like the inspirational charge a freshly survived convention gives you. 26 days and counting!


Take me back to the top!