Bookshelf Overload: September 2017

Another month, another collection of interesting stuff made its way into my domicile! It’s been a while since I’ve gotten a box full of review copies, but Kodansha Comics did send a few things my way in September. Of those, I was most excited to see the debut of Kore Yamazaki’s Frau Faust, which I already had my eyes on due to my fondness for the creator’s other series in English, The Ancient Magus’ Bride. The other September debut that I was particularly happy to see, and one of my most anticipated releases of the year, was the first omnibus of Takako Shimura’s Sweet Blue Flowers. (I should hopefully have my review of that written up and posted soon.) On the other end of the spectrum, last month I also managed to snag complete sets of a couple of out-of-print and somewhat difficult to find manga series for a good price–Mizuho Kusanagi’s NG Life and Makoto Kobayashi’s What’s Michael?–which pleased me immensely.

Aho-Girl, Volume 1 by Hiroyuki
Appleseed Alpha by Iou Kuroda
A Bride’s Story, Volume 9 by Kaoru Mori
Blame, Omnibus 3 by Tsutomu Nihei
Bungo Stray Dogs, Volume 4 by Kafka Asagiri
Captain Harlock: Dimensional Voyage, Volume 1 written by Leiji Matsumoto, illustrated by Kouiti Shimaboshi
Fairy Tail: Rhodonite by Kyouta Shibano
Frau Faust, Volume 1 by Kore Yamazaki
Golden Kamuy, Volume 2 by Satoru Noda
Haikyu!!, Volume 16 by Haruichi Furudate
Kigurumi Guardians, Volume 1 by Lily Hoshino
Kiss Me at the Stroke of Midnight, Volume 1 by Rin Mikimoto
NG Life, Volumes 1-9 by Mizuho Kusanagi
Princess Jellyfish, Omnibus 6 by Akiko Higashimura
Sweet Blue Flowers, Omnibus 1 by Takako Shimura
That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime written by Fuse, illustrated by Taiki Kawakami.
Waiting for Spring, Volume 1 by Anashin
What’s Michael?, Volumes 1-11 by Makoto Kobayashi
Yona of the Dawn, Volume 8 by Mizuho Kusanagi

Breaks, Volume 1 by Emma Vieceli and Malin Ryden
The Clerics of Midsummer by Victoria Grace Elliott
Empowered, Omnibus 3 by Adam Warren
Finding Molly: An Adventure in Catsitting written by Justine Prado, illustrated by Jenn St-Onge
Finding Peace by Jordan Alsaqa and Marie Enger
Fresh Romance, Volume 2 edited by Maytal Gilboa
Galahad and the Far-Off Horizon written by Hansel Moreno
M.F.K. by Nilah Magruder
Minority Monsters by Tab Kimpton
The Mystery of La Luna written by Rhiannon Rasmussen-Silverstein, illustrated by Ainsley Yeager
Not Stray by Wai Au
Off the Ice by Wai Au
Sex Fantasy by Sophia Foster-Dimino
Taproot by Keezy Young
Venture Forth by Ainsley Yeager
Verona written by Emily Dell, illustrated by Bryndon Everett and Mollie Helms
White Rice Fish by Wai Au

Bubbly by Meredith McClaren

Attack on Titan Adventure: Year 850: Last Stand at Wall Rose by Tomoyuki Fujinami
The Black Tides of Heaven by Jy Yang
Death’s End by Cixin Liu
Last Words from Montmartre by Miaojin Qiu
Quantum Devil Saga: Avatar Tuner, Volume 2 by Yu Godai
The Part of Me That Isn’t Broken Inside by Kazufumi Shiraishi
The Red Threads of Fortune by Jy Yang
Sweet Bean Paste by Durian Sukegawa
Yesterday by Felicia Yap

The Ginza Ghost and Other Stories by Keikichi Osaka
Into the Light: An Anthology of Literature by Koreans in Japan edited by Melissa L. Wender

Womansword: What Japanese Words Say About Women by Kittredge Cherry

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  1. “Makoto Kobayashi’s What’s Michael?”

    Reminder: I have the first dozen+ issues of Super Manga Blast where Viz first published this stuff in the early 90s if you’re interested in a trade. ;)

  2. Sweet, you got all of What’s Michael, at long last! Hopefully that random volume of the other publisher’s version of it I sent got you interested! Because it really is the best cat manga ever, no other cat manga has ever really done it for me (well, I liked Junji Ito’s Cat Diary a lot too, but part of the charm there was mixing his horror look with ordinary mundane things). It’s almost scary how prophetic What’s Michael is in many ways, what with the internet being filled with just cats being cats. Except for things like lack of cell phones and the big CRT televisions (that cats used to love sitting on!), you’d probably be forgiven for thinking What’s Michael was made more recently.

    I also hope you’ll enjoy NG Life, since I had already read (and enjoyed) that series, I knew I’d need Yona right away, even without any Basara comparisons. I really do hope Viz sees fit to rescue this one, and instead of posting “from the creator of Mugen Spiral” all over the cover (a 2 volume thing that was clearly a “cut short” series that wasn’t super impressive to begin with, yet Tokyopop seemed to adore it), they can mention that she makes Yona of the Dawn now. Actually, if Viz did re-release it, I’d probably get it again (hopefully in omnibus format though).

    • I really have to thank you for introducing me to What’s Michael and for sending me that initial volume! I’ve been looking for a complete set of Dark Horse’s run ever since and I’m really happy to have finally found one. (I also was getting tired of waiting for the re-release that will likely never happen.)

      I actually picked up NG Life partially on your recommendation, too! I’ve really been enjoying Yona of the Dawn and so wanted to read more of the creator’s works. Hopefully I’ll get a chance to dig into the series, soon. (Random fact about my NG Life collection: One of the volumes is actually an artifact from when Tokyopop was trying out print-on-demand to keep some things in print.)

      • On my NG Life set, the first two volumes are from that time when Tokyopop was printing on that super thin toiler paper that you could see through to the other page on (claimed problems with getting a certain paper or something annoying like that). Part of why I’d definitely buy it again if Viz put out a better quality version. Always have to be extra careful with reading those. I actually remember that the day I came home happy that I just snagged the final vol (9) from Borders, I checked online to proudly proclaim I had picked it up, only to be greeted with the news of Tokyopop going under. As for her earlier stuff, NG Life is really the only one worth your time, it seems most of her early stuff didn’t get to bloom into a full series until NG Life.

        I don’t understand Dark Horse’s refusal to let us know wtf is going on with some manga titles. Like, Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service, it’s done in Japan, and you’ve published 14 of the volumes and went through the trouble of doing omnibuses, do you want to finish this thing or not? And cat manga is all the rage now and you’ve been sitting on the best one ever, just letting it collect dust when two big volumes would do wonders for it. But every time I see Michael’s cat antics, it’s like someone was in my house doing candid camera on my own cat (Butters), the cat body language in this manga is just the best.

        Speaking of print-on-demand, it’d be nice if Viz did that for some stuff, like those hard to get volumes of Basara or Banana Fish. Even if they cost $20 a volume, still much cheaper than the $200+ those things go for used online.


  1. […] week at Experiments in Manga I posted the Bookshelf Overload for September which includes lists of some of the manga and other books that I picked up last month (along with […]

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