Like many of you I’m a sucker for a sale and though I missed the recent sale on Vertical books while I was out of town (*snif*) I’ve perked up a bit over this week’s specials at rightstuf.com from Digital Manga Publishing, whose eclectic mix of titles (on sale through tomorrow, October 22nd) offers something for everyone. Taking a look at my review index, I realize I’ve actually reviewed very few of these, but my recommendations are as hearty as ever!
At the top of my list are a couple of titles from the brilliant Fumi Yoshinaga, Antique Bakery and Flower of Life, both wonderfully quirky series as only Yoshinaga can produce. She has a great gift for painting her characters through dialogue that is uniquely hers and it is this that draws me most to her work. Also, she’s funny–really, really funny, yet simultaneously poignant and frequently deep. If that alone is not enough to sway you, check out Michelle Smith’s lovely review of Antique Bakery and Shaenon Garrity’s hilarious overview of Flower of Life. As Shaenon says at the end of her write-up, “Thank you, Fumi Yoshinaga, for continuing to be better than everyone!” I should note as well that Yoshinaga’s popular boys’ love mangaThe Moon and Sandals, which to my shame I have not yet read, is available on sale as well!
Secondly, I’ll mention a couple of books I have yet to read but are on the top of my list as I browse the sale, namely Osamu Tezuka’s Swallowing the Earth, released this past June, and Kaoru Tada’s popular shojo series Itazura na Kiss which debuts with DMP in November. Though these titles are obviously quite different, they were/are highly anticipated releases, and not just by me. Kate Dacey, in her review of Swallowing the Earth outlines beautifully both what is great and problematic in the Tezuka classic, ultimately recommending it “as testament to Tezuka’s fertile imagination, and his ability to grow as an artist and a storyteller.” As for Itazura na Kiss, I think Danielle Leigh’s fantastic write-up of the anime series says it all. Though, as I’ve said, these are titles I can’t yet personally recommend, they’d be the first in my shopping cart and I think that’s worth sharing.
This brings me to the category that makes up the bulk of DMP’s available catalogue: Boys’ Love. I’ve had a bit of a love-hate relationship with DMP’s BL offerings, particularly those from their June imprint which tend to include a lot of manga with the traits I like least in the genre. That said, I’ve recently fallen hard for several titles from June, including Tohko Miyagi’s Il Gatto Sul G and Keiko Kinoshita’s Kiss Blue, both of which I discovered during my tour of eManga.com, as well as You Higuri’s Ludwig II which I’ve read and will be reviewing soon (see Casey Brienza’s thoughtful review for a more immediate recommendation). Also, I’ve been fairly impressed by what I’ve seen so far from DMP’s new DokiDoki imprint, particularly Eiki Eiki and Taishi Zaou’s one-shot collaboration, Color, and Saemi Yorita’s two-volume series, Brilliant Blue, both of which have been reviewed here at Manga Bookshelf.
So check out those review links and hurry on over to rightstuf.com! Just one more day to save on all these fantastic titles!
Travis saysOctober 21, 2009 at 8:14 pm
Oh, I’m kind of surprised someone is bringing out Itazura na Kiss. I love the series, but the author died in the middle of it, so it’s unfinished.
Melinda Beasi saysOctober 21, 2009 at 10:55 pm
Yes, I think a lot of people were surprised, not just because it is unfinished but also (and maybe even more so) because most publishers have been shying away from long shojo series like this recently.
Travis saysOctober 21, 2009 at 11:22 pm
Yeah, even unfinished it’s like 27 volumes, I think. Plus it looks and feels very dated, so it doesn’t really seem like the sort of thing that would get picked up. I hope it does well!
Melinda Beasi saysOctober 21, 2009 at 11:35 pm
I hope so too!