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From the Heart, Cocohana

It’s not often I’m in the right place at the right time to see the birth of a new magazine. This time, I was. Shueisha’s Cocohana launched in time for January 2012 and I just happened to be at a store that carried it when it hit the shelves.

Cocohana is being positioned as a Shoujo magazine for adults. As a result, the feeling is neither quite Josei, nor Shoujo, but some hybrid creation. From my perspective, it works.

To bump up its appeal to an adult audience, Volume 1 started right off with a few power names on the roster, Higashimura Akiko (known for Kuragehime, known here as Jellyfish Princess,) with “Kakukaku Shikajika,” Yamashita Tomoko (Dining Bar Akira,) with a one-shot, “Biseinen,” and is reprinting some previously serialized stories from Chorus magazine, including Haruno Nanae’s classic Papa Told Me. (This gives me hope that, perhaps we’ll see her Pieta re-serialized. This story is one of my favorite older Yuri series and as the Yuri audience now exists as a thing on its own, I think Pieta‘s time has come.) “Ashi Girl,” by Morimoto Kozuek,o is the kind of fantastic mix of historical rewrite and female experience that I haven’t seen since Akaishi Michiyo’s Amakusa 1637. I’m looking forward to more of it.

Previews of most of the series running in Cocohana are avialable on the website:, as are messages from the manga artists. Uniquely, the Cocohana main page also includes a Twitter stream of messages by the manga
artists, something I haven’t seen any other magazine website include – despite the adoption of Twitter by many manga artists. The website also offers a personalized fortune-telling session, if you send your information in by form.

Scheduled for 28 volumes a year, Cocohana retails for 500 yen ($6.44 at time of writing,) for approximately 450 pages, which puts it at the high end of per-page cost for a manga magazine…another sign that this is for an older audience. Bolstering the idea that the magazine is Shoujo, not Josei, it comes with a giveaway – a small purse – but, with art by Anno Moyocco which confirms that the audience is adults. So far, in image and story, Cocohana is balanced perfectly to present a specific image.

Cocohana, the shoujo magazine for adults, from Shueisha:


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  1. This sounds amazing, really wish I could read Japanese now.

  2. Is it available in English?!?

    • Japanese manga magazines, with the exception of Shonen Jump, are in Japanese only. You can order them through Amazon JP, BK1, J-List or Japanese bookstores (Sanseido and Kinokuniya are the two largest chains) in a city or a Mitsuwa mall near you.

      The joy of reading Japanese manga magazines is one of the many reasons learning Japanese is so much fun!


  1. […] Friedman looks at Shueisha’s brand new magazine Cocohana, billed as a shoujo magazine for […]

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