A different take, but no less important, can be found in A Story of Seven Lives by Shirakawa Gin. “Nanao used to be a house cat, but after tragedy struck, he was abandoned on the rough streets of Tokyo. Now, alongside his best friend and fellow stray Machi, Nanao has to fight every day just to get by. Aside from foraging for food and finding somewhere to sleep, Nanao and Machi must remain vigilant about all sorts of dangers, including humans who want stray cats gone. When a woman named Yoshino starts feeding the neighborhood cats, Nanao reluctantly bonds with her. But the woman has emotional scars and a past entwined with Nanao’s. Can Nanao help her heal, and perhaps heal himself in the process? The entire three-volume series will be released in English in one oversized omnibus edition.” Which is available now from Seven Seas.
The things you can make into a manga… Shibanban Super Cute Doggies is written and illustrated by Yasuteru Ogoshi. “A full-color book for the popular Shiba Inu characters appearing in LINE stickers and stationery! Meet Aka, Kuro, Cha, Shiro, the Roly-Poly Pups, and the rest of this colorful cast of adorable Shiba Inu dogs! Whether they’re venturing out into stormy weather in a raincoat, lazing at the beach, napping in a cozy dog bed, or eagerly eyeing dinner someone left out on the table, their fun (and sometimes mischievous) antics are sure to put a smile on your face.” Available now from Seven Seas.
More interesting manga from Seven Seas, this one with a notable yaoi bent: Why Don’t You Eat Me, My Dear Wolf? by Ao Koishikawa. [What a title!] “Taro is sent to the forest alone. He’s a sacrifice for the monstrous wolf, Uru. Upon seeing him, Uru declares Taro too small and too thin. The wolf feeds him, clothes him, and cares for him. Time passes and Taro finds himself wanting to be devoured by this giant wolf who gives him nothing but affection.” Poor thing.
The first sentence of the description for this new manga series probably sums it up better than we ever could: “After losing his mother at a young age, Nekota is taken in by family friends… who happen to be a couple of human-sized walking, talking cats. Not only do his new parents have paws, tails, and furry pointed ears, but now he also has an adorable little sister, Neneko-chan! As a high schooler, he’s integrated well into their household, and his precocious adoptive sister has fully accepted him as her big brother. Whether she’s showing him things she brought home from elementary school, purrsistently asking him to play with her mouse toy, or waking him up at the same early hour every morning for breakfast, life with this charming feline family is never dull!” My Sister, The Cat by Senko is available now from Seven Seas Entertainment.
Here’s a rather unique manga we came across. You can tell just by the title: Ex-Yakuza and Stray Kitten, written and illustrated by Riddle Kamimura. “After being abandoned in the cold rain, tiny kitten Sabu should have been grateful to find a new home. But when he’s rescued by Jin, whose every atom screams ‘yakuza’, Sabu suspects he’s out of the frying pan and into the fire! Yet Jin’s scarred hands and face hide a sweet man beneath… a man who pampers kitties with baths and bottle-feedings!” Several volumes are available from Seven Seas.
And now for something altogether different… Night of the Living Cat, a new black & white manga created by Hawkman and Mecha-Roots. “A virus spreads across the world, transforming all humankind into wild, slavering, furry beasts: Cats, to be precise. Those few survivors who remain human take refuge in the dark corners of the earth as they fight back against the feline horde. Kunagi, a man with no memory of his past yet a deep knowledge of cats, struggles to hold on with only his wits and a will to survive. Yet the virus transmits merely through cuddles, and Kunagi finds kitties so hard to resist! Is his willpower strong enough to withstand this hair-raising cat-tastrophe?” Find out from Seven Seas.
We just learned about Shangri-La Frontier, a black & white manga written by Katarina and illustrated by Ryosuke Fuji. “Second-year high school student Rakuro Hizutome loves nothing more than finding so-called ‘trash games’ and beating the crap out of them. When he decides to change things up by playing a new, ‘god-tier’ VR game known as Shangri-La Frontier (a.k.a. SLF), he does what he does best: Min-maxes, skips the prologue, and jumps straight into action! Clad in nothing but shorts and a bird mask, Rakuro (player name: Sunraku) launches into the world of SLF. Things are going well at first as he takes down a goblin, a bunny, and even a python. But then Sunraku comes up against a huge, hard-hitting wolf known as Lycagon the Nightslayer. Will Sunraku’s years of ‘trash game’ experience be enough, or is he about to suffer a rude awakening just a few hours into his SLF adventure?” The series is available now from Kodansha International. What’s more, there’s already an anime adaptation series available on Crunchyroll — and YouTube has a preview.
Well thank you, Amazon! They pointed us at The Wize Wize Beasts of the Wizarding Wizdoms, a black & white yaoi manga that’s written and illustrated by Nagabe. “Hidden away deep within the woods, far from the prying eyes of the world, lies the Wizdom’s School of Wizarding. There beasts of all kinds gather to live, to learn, and to love. From everyday animals to fantastical creatures, these BL stories are told with a realistic and light-hearted touch.” Somehow we missed this on its initial release, but it’s available now from Seven Seas.
Sometimes you really just gotta love the titles of Japanese media creations. Reincarnated As A Dragon Hatchling. You’re going to remember that one, yes? And it perfectly describes this new black & white manga written by Nekoko and Naji and illustrated by Rio. “If you woke up as a sentient egg in some random forest, I bet you’d be confused, too. That’s exactly what happened to me in the oddest turn of events…Being reborn as a little egg has its challenges, but luckily, with all these monsters out to eat me, I’m gaining experience quick. Once I bust out of this shell, a cool new form better await me–that is, if I survive long enough!” And that’s just the first volume. You’ll find even more from Seven Seas.
Dragonar Academy is a Japanese fantasy novel series by Shiki Mizuchi. Started in 2010, the series was illustrated by Kohada Shimesaba. Later it was adapted into a manga series by the artist Ran, and more recently it has begun production as an anime series from C-Station (scheduled for release later this year). Well now Seven Seas Entertainment have announced that the manga series will be released in English for the North American market this month. According to Wikipedia, the plot goes like this: “Learning to ride and tame dragons comes easy to most students at Ansarivan Dragonar Academy—except for first-year student Ash Blake, who is known by his classmates as the ‘number one problem child.’ Poor Ash is the laughing stock at school because, despite his unfashionably large star-shaped brand that marks him as a future dragon master, he has nothing to show for it. His dragon has never appeared. Until now, that is. One fateful day, Ash’s dragon awakes in full glory, but appears different than any dragon ever seen before—in the form of a beautiful girl! What’s worse, Ash soon discovers that this new dragon has attitude to spare, as she promptly informs him that she is the master, and he, the servant.” Got that?
Oops. This manga would be a lot funnier if not for the serious news in August of a man in Idaho being arrested for having sex with a cat. Many of Flayrah’s readers wondered how that was possible, considering the size differences of a human’s and a cat’s sex apparatus.
One of the ongoing questions in Monster Musume is how Kurusu, the terrified human teenaged protagonist, is going to have sex with a snake? Well, Miia’s human above the waist. And with boobs that, like the Maryland judge said describing Jane Russell’s (in banning the movie The Outlaw), "breasts hung like a thunderstorm over a summer landscape." And Miia really, really, REALLY wants to f--- with him, despite his genteel inhibitions.
So does Papi, the harpy. Well, when she’s old enough. She’s about the equivalent of a nine- or ten-year-old human girl. And, being a bird-girl, noticeably feather-brained, too. (Kurusu isn’t into cradle-robbing, either.)
And Centorea, the centauress. No “centaurette” as in Disney’s Fantasia; this is a dignified but horny adolescent female centaur. The centaurs are supposed to be too haughty to comingle with humans, but Centorea proves the old adage that you can justify anything if you try hard enough.
No, it’s not another My Little Pony thing. Seven Seas Entertainment is releasing A Centaur’s Life, a new digest-sized black & white manga series written and illustrated by Kei Murayama. It was previously released in Japan as A Centaur’s Worries. “Being a teenager is never easy… especially for a centaur! Himeno is a sweet, shy girl, who like many teens her age, struggles with the trials and tribulations of attending high school. The difference is she’s a centaur; but she’s not alone. In fact, all of her classmates are supernatural creatures, sporting either horns, wings, tails, halos, or some other unearthly body appendage. Yet despite their fantastical natures, Himeno and her best friends-the dragon-winged Nozomi, and Kyoko with her spiraled horns-are down-to-earth, fun-loving teenagers who grapple with issues of life and love in a mostly normal daily school setting.” So you say! Look for A Centaur’s Life at your local comic book or manga store, starting in November.
What if Sherlock Holmes was reincarnated as a dog? Well, it’s an idea, anyway. Sherlock Bones is a new black & white manga series created by Yuma Ando and illustrated by Yuki Sato. The digest-sized trade paperback is available at Barnes & Noble. This is from the publisher, Kodansha International: “When Takeru adopts his new pet, he’s in for a surprise—the dog is none other than the reincarnation of Sherlock Holmes, the famous detective. What’s more, this “Sherdog” has decided that Takeru is the reincarnation of his long-time assistant, Dr. Watson. Takeru may think Sherdog (or he himself) is crazy, but with no one else able to communicate with Holmes, he’s roped into becoming the canine’s assistant all the same. Using his exceptional sleuthing skills, Holmes uncovers clues to solve the trickiest crimes.”
After a successful Kickstarter campaign, DMP Digital Manga will be releasing a translated version of Osamu Tezuka’s A-Tomcat this April. Tezuka, as if you didn’t know, was the creator of Kimba the White Lion — and many many other world-famous titles, including of course Astro-Boy. This one-shot black & white paperback is an off-shoot of the Astro-Boy Series. Try to follow this: ” Tsugio is a young Japanese boy who is very fond of reading the Astro-Boy manga series. One day he finds a stray kitten and persuades his family to keep it. But then, after an encounter with two aliens honeymooning on Earth (!), suddenly the little cat not only looks like Astro-Boy, but has Astro-Boy’s Powers! Check out more at DMP’s order site.
Previews runs a top 100 best selling monthly comics list; they’re obviously a bit behind, as this issue contains November’s. My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic #1 was ranked at 15, making it the most bought book not from DC or Marvel. So, way to go bronies!