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TMH's Manga News Roundup Q1 2022

A quarterly roundup of manga news between January to March 2022

I have searched far and wide for interesting manga news to share. This is the first of four roundups that I will do this year. I'd rather take a "big picture approach" to the news rather than do weekly or monthly roundups because stories develop all of the time and there is a lot, a lot of news out there. Keep in mind that this is not supposed to be a comprehensive rundown of everything in the manga world but rather stuff that I find interesting and wish to discuss and share with you. In this roundup, I present you with news that (mostly) occurred between January to March of 2022.

(NOTE: My personal commentary, notes, and asides will be in brackets [commentary].)

Digital-only Manga Releases

BL publisher Animate International will release Breathless Momentum and Mask Danshi in April on multiple platforms. Previous releases include: Lala's Married Life [which I am enjoying immensely], Living with Him series, Kabukicho Bad Trip, and The World's End. The World's End was met some translation controversy as the publisher omitted the first story from the anthology.

Black Hook Press released some of their catalogue digitally as explained in their Instagram post. Dokudami Tenement vol 1 & 2 by Takashi Fukutami, and Badass Babe by Bonten Taro released in March.

Publisher BookLive will be re-translating Ranking of Kings due to typographical errors and translations. They issued an apology and full explanation on their website.

Coamix Inc officially publishes manga in English now via their MangaHot app and site. The following manga can be read via their service: City Hunter, Record of Ragnarok, Mother Parasite, Fist of the North Star, Keiji's Kabuki Adventure, Tokyo Duel, and The legend of Lu Bu.

Kodansha digital debuts include: Apple Children of Aeon, A Kiss with a Cat, Falling Drowing, Fungus and Iron, Hiraeth, The Transcendent One-Sided Love of Yoshida the Catch, and Zatsuki: Make Me A Star. The publisher also announced The World of Summoning will be a simulpub release available on Bookwalker, Kindle, Crunchyroll, Azuki, and more. Finally, Kodansha also released MF Ghost and Great Teacher Onizuka as bulk day-one uploads. [Kodansha did a lot of bulk uploads this quarter, and looking ahead, it looks like they will release all 36 volumes of The Wallflower series on April 12.] Between January-March of 2022, Kodansha has released 23 series as digital-only or "digital-first" titles.

New subscription service and digital store MangaPlaza officially launched in March, and The OASG reviews the platform.

If you're looking for free (and legally licensed) manga to read, you might want to head over to MangaPlus. Between January 2022 - January 2023, MangaPlus is offering the "first read" of several series for free on their app. More details here.

In more news, Manga Plus and VIZ Media did not publish chapter 74 and 75 of Ayakashi Triangle on their services. Not publishing the chapters led to some controversy online. (Seven Seas announced that they will publish the manga in print in November.)

MangaSplaining Podcast will now serialize manga in their newsletters. First releases include These Days by Taiyo Matsumoto and Okinawa by Susumu Higa. See their website for full details.

BL Publisher ShuCream has officially launched in the West! Their launch lineup includes: Ask and You will Receive, Under My Skin, and more. The manga is available on MangaPlaza, MangaClub, and Bookwalker. Also, be on the lookout for events and other cool news from ShuCream! [Hoping ShuCream will expand beyond those three stores/services...]

Shusuisha released a few manga in March on multiple platforms. Releases include: Forbidden Love, Shotgun Divorce [I read this one 😂], I'm a Single Mother in a Fake Marriage, Unequaled Sadist Sorcerer Ark and My Exclusive Contact, and The Cat Running Wild in My Apartment.

VIZ announced more digital manga to be released in the summer. Titles include: Phantom Seer, I Tell C, and more.

Print/Digital Releases

Ablaze announced two new licenses, and they are the manwha Heavenly Demon Reborn! and the chess manga Blitz. [I am partial to the chess manga.]

First Second will publish Shuna’s Journey by Hayao Miyazaki. This release will come nearly 40 years after it was published in Japan.

Indie publisher Glacier Bay Books licensed two new titles Unkept Garden and The Other Side of the Clouds for print/digital.

Kodansha announced their fall releases in a super-packed "Kodansha Live" YouTube video on March 23. Highlights include: Last Gender, River's Edge, and Skygrazer. Besides manga, Kodansha will be releasing two novels Hell in a Bottle and The Moon Over the Mountain, and they will be releasing the art book Studio Ghibli: The Complete Works. Check it out here.

Translation company Local Manga announced that they will be publishing and releasing books via Twitter.

One Peace Books' released their fall catalogue. It's available to download via their website. The new licensed manga titles include: Usotoki Rhetoric, Captain Corinth, The Death Mage, and The Wrong Way to Use Healing Magic. [I am excited about Usotoki Rhetoric. Yes, more mystery shoujo!]

Indie publisher Star Fruit Books announced that they will publish Comic Bright, an irregularly published manga magazine. The magazine will contain manga, essays, interviews, and more, and the magazine will be available in print/digital.

Seven Seas has taken to Twitter every Wednesday to announce their new licenses. They are taking a break now, but promise to resume sometime in April. Licensing highlights include: the new Webtoons imprint with Killing Stalking, Love is An Illusion, & Pulse as launch titles, the new imprint Steamship with Game: Between the Suits, I'll Never Be Your Crowned Princess!, Ladies on Top, & Outbride: Beauty and the Beasts as launch titles, The Girl from the Other Side as a deluxe hardcover omnibus release, Yakuza Finacé: Raise Wa Tanin Ga II, Les Misérables, and Barbarities (to be released January of 2023). Outside of manga, Seven Seas will release the danmei novel The Husky and His White Cat Shizun (2HA) and the light novel The Case Files of Jeweler Richard later this year. The Husky and His White Cat Shizun is already doing numbers, breaking pre-order records. You can see all of the licenses that Seven Seas has announced so far as well as take the monthly survey to request manga/light novels/etc. you want them to license via their website. [Unlike some publishers, Seven Seas actually makes navigating and finding information via their website extremely easy.]

Square Enix announced their fall line-up on March 4, and the highlights include Tokyo Aliens and The Girl I Like Forgot Her Glasses. Check out the rest here.

BL publisher SuBLime announced two new licenses on Valentine's Day, and they are Megumi & Tsugumi and Midnight Rain. [Yay, more omegaverse!]

Titan Comics launches a new dedicated manga imprint, and Afro Samurai will be its launch title. Titan Comics will also publish ATOM: The Beginning and Kamen Rider Kuuga under this new imprint.

In late February, Yen Press announced their slate of summer releases. Highlights include Heroine No More, Josee, the Tiger, & Fish as an omnibus, Kowloon Generic Romance, Tales of the Kingdom as a hardcover release, and Tsubaki-chou Lonely Planet. The publisher also announced their fall releases in late March, and highlights include: Coffee Moon, Embrace Your Size, and She Loves to Cook, and She Loves to Eat. Novel and light novel highlights include Belle and Sugar Apple Fairy Tale. Earlier in March, Yen Press announced the narrators for their slate of audio book titles under the new Yen Audio imprint.

VIZ announced their fall releases, and highlights include: Mission: Yokzakura Family, Romantic Killer, Rainbow Days, and Mermaid Scales and the Town of Sand. [Mission: Yozakura Family was announced as a digital title only back in 2020, but after fans screamed for a print release for two years straight, I guess VIZ finally decided it was worth printing the series. Happy for them. I hope all 5 of them buy it. On the other hand, maybe there's an anime coming or something.]

General News

Azuki appears to be in growth mode as they just received a $500K investment from Y Combinator.

Grab the popcorn before checking out the latest news about Sol Press' downfall. [I haven't seen a story about a publisher that was this exciting since the late 00's/early 10's anime/manga crash.]

Congrats to mangaka Tatsuya Endo. His smash hit series Spy x Family celebrates its 3rd year of serialization.

Feature Articles

I read a lot of Harlequin manga so I was very interested in Rebecca Silverman's article about the subject for Anime News Network. Check it out here.

Helen Chazan wrote a really moving essay about Urusei Yatsura and gender for Solrad. Check it out here.

Adam Symchuck writes about the rise of doujinshi in the West for the Anime Herald. Check it out here.

Let's Discuss

Check out "The Current State of the Manga Industry" panel from Anime NYC 2021. The Japan Foundation & CGP, NY recently uploaded the video to their YouTube channel on March 11. Panelists include Kevin Hamric (VIZ Media) and Kurt Hassler (Yen Press). Christopher Macdonald (Anime News Network) is the moderator.

Also, while you're on The Japan Foundation & CGP, NY's channel check out this video on Shojo manga.

Just for fun

Kodansha gave away shoujo-themed free wallpaper for desktop and mobile during the month of February. Check it out here.

Disperse! Go forth and read!

That concludes this quarter's wrap-up. Q2's wrap-up will be released late June/early July. Follow me on Twitter @THatMangaHunter or subscribe to my newsletter for updates.

Happy reading!

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