Archive for the English Manga Category


2017 Yuri Gift Guide, Part 1: Manga

December 5th, 2017

Holy cow, it’s already December and gift giving and getting time! It has never been easier to get good Yuri, so for once you can hand your relatives this list, smile, sit back and get yourself a pile of great Yuri.  Or pore over it looking for just the right gift for yourself, your Yuri-loving friends or relative. Some of these items are still to be released, but most will have links, so you can at least order them right now. There’s just *so* much (and this isn’t everything out in English, just some popular items) that I’m splitting the list into two. Today we’re just doing manga and comics. For all the manga available in English, check out English Yuri Manga on the Yuricon Store!

 

Title:  Bloom Into You by Nio Nakatani

Volume 1 | Volume 2 | Volume 3| Volume 4| Volume 5 | ongoing

What It’s About: This school life drama follows Yuu, a girl who does not have romantic feelings for anyone and Touko, the President of the Student Council, who says she feels the same. But, then Touko develops an romantic interest in Yuu. Yuu admires Touko but, beyond that, is not sure of her feelings. 

Who Will Like It: People a little tired of simple girl-meets-girl romance, or who want a little (or more than a little) nuance or difficulty in their schoolgirl Yuri. 

Beware: Yuu is presented as aromantic, but the premise is a romance. Expect Yuu to cave.

 

 

Title: Hana and Hina Afterschool by Milk Morinaga 

Volume 1 | Volume 2 | Volume 3

What It’s About:  Hana meets Hina while working at a part time job after school. They become friends and start working together. They start to think of each other as more than just friends. ^_^

Who Will Like It: Milk Morinaga Fans, folks who like their Yuri cute, sweet, without serious crisis and/or with a tenuous connection to reality.

Beware: Don’t expect anything deep here. Morinaga’s specialty is the space between recognizing feelings and confessing them and this is firmly in that space.

 

 

Title: Kase-san Series by Hiromi Takashima

Kase-san and Morning Glories | Kase-san and Bento |Kase-san and Shortcake

What It’s About:  A breathtakingly sweet romance series between Yamada, an average girl who loves flowers and the star of the school track club, Kase.

Who Will Like It: People looking for something a little more realistic than Morinaga’s work. Yuri fans not completely jaded from years of schoolgirl romance.

Beware: Still schoolgirls in love. Does not shy away from fanservice, may not be visually appropriate for the young readers who could use it the most.

 

 

Title: My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness by Kabi Nagata

1 volume

What It’s About: This manga was serialized on Pixiv, as Nagata details her struggles with depression, an eating disorder and finding friends and companionship as a lesbian.

 My Solo Exchange Diary by Kabi Nagata

1 volume

What It’s About: Kabi Nagata is back with a sequel to her blockbuster, continuing the story of her trials and travails, as she pieces her life together.

Who Will Like It: People craving representation of life with depression and/or adult life issues.

Beware: Despite flashes of self-deprecating humor, this is not a light-hearted series. It is, however, a honest look at chronic, debilitating depression.

 

 

Title: Claudine! by Riyoko Ikeda

1 volume

What It’s About: Claudine is assigned female, but desires male privilege and to be able to love women freely. Claudine struggles with sexuality and gender in this emotional classic Yuri by the creator or Rose of Versailles.

Who Will Like It:  Fans of Rose of Versailles, Dear Brother and other Ikeda masterworks. This story can read as trans or butch lesbian (the lack of specificity can be attributed to the creator having written it 40 years ago.) Classic Yuri fans will definitely want to get it.

Beware: This is not going to end well.

 

 

Title: Citrus by Saburouta

Volume 1Volume 2Volume 3Volume 4 | Volume 5 | Volume 6 | Volume 7 | ongoing

What It’s About: Mei and Yuzu are sisters by marriage and despite the fact that both have deep, unresolved emotional issues, they are passionately attracted to one another. 

Who Will Like It: People who enjoy melodrama and soap operas, and watching train wreck stories full of damaged people.

Beware: It’s full of manipulative behavior, some violence and no one ever looks happy about anything.  Ever.

 

 

Title:  After Hours by Yuhta Nishio

Volume 1 | Volume 2 

What It’s About:  Emi and Kei meet at a nightclub, and spend the night together. Kei is a DJ and draws Emi into her production team, as she sets up as rave. An adult relationship story (although the art is a bit infantilizing.)

Who Will Like It: Adults looking for adult characters whose emotional lives are not stuck in high school…and audiophiles. People looking for a story where the physical relationship isn’t service-y or immature.

Beware: If you don’t like moe art, the character designs could be off-putting. It’s not really a romance, but you will learn a lot about sound equipment.

 

 

Revolutionary Girl Utena Manga Box SetTitle:  Revolutionary Girl Utena Manga Box Set by Chiho Saito and Be-papas

2 volume set

What It’s About:  Every year Utena receives a mysterious postcard. This year, the postcard leads her to Ohtori Academy to look for the prince who saved her as a child. Instead she’s put in the position becoming a prince to the Rose Bride. This is the high-quality treatment that this fantasy series deserves.

Who Will Like It: Fans of the surreal, fantasy fans and people who like mind fuckery.

Beware: There is serious sexual manipulation, incest, and sexual abuse.

 

 

Title: Sweet Blue Flowers by Takako Shimura

Volume 1 | Volume 2 | Volume 3 | Volume 4

What It’s About:  Fumi hasn’t seen Akiko in years, but her friend is back in town and once again they are thick as thieves. When Fumi starts dating an upperclassman at her all-girl’s school, she tells her best friend and gains strength. Shimura  drew on classic Yuri tropes for this “S”-style school romance, but with a deft touch and compelling characters, drags the whole genre into the 21st century. 

Beware: The ending and beginning are trope-y, with loads of tiresome creepiness at the beginning. The middle is amazing and worth it.

 

 

Title: Kiss and White Lily for My Dearest Girl by Canno

Volume 1 | Volume 2| Volume 3| Volume 4 | Volume 5 | ongoing

What It’s About:  This ongoing school serial begins with two girls, Yurine Kurozawa and Ayaka Shiramine, who could not be more opposite if they tried, and the relationship that one of them wants desperately to deny.  Later volumes follow other couples at the same school as well as circling back to Ayaka and Yurine.

Who Will Like It: People who’ve been reading Yuri for a while and will enjoy new takes on the old tropes. People who are new to Yuri and aren’t burned out on the old tropes.

Beware: Every girl in this school is paired, seemingly. Makes you want to see the story of the one straight girl in school.

 

 

Title:  Murciélago by Yoshimura Kana

Volume 1 | Volume 2 | Volume 3| Volume 4| Volume 5| ongoing

What It’s About:  This extremely adult, extremely gruesome, madcap “violence Yuri” story follows psychopathic killer Koumori Kuroko and her partner Hinako, as they track down and kill other killers for the police. There are no good guys here. Everyone is broken, the stories are gross, sometimes with side of extra creepy and the lesbian sex is weird. ^_^ 

Who Will Like It: People looking for something not cute or sweet. This series is violent, amoral and has ugly, unrealistic lesbian sex.

Beware: This series is violent, amoral and has ugly unrealistic lesbian sex.

 

 

Éclair: Ananta ni Hibiku Yuri Anthology

1 volume

What It’s About: An anthology of school-life Yuri, headlined by Bloom Into You creator Nio Nakatani and Kiss and White Lily For My Dearest Girl creator Canno.

Who Will Like It:  People who like the aforementioned series or those who really like stories about love experienced in school.

Beware: It’s a whole lotta schoolgirl stories and “Story A.”

 

 

 

Legend of Korra: Turf Wars

Volume 1 | Volume 2 | Volume 3 by  Michael Dante DiMartino (Author),‎ Irene Koh (Illustrator),‎ Vivian Ng (Illustrator)

What It’s About: The Avatar, Korra, and her new love Asami enter the spirit world together. Upon their return to Republic City, they find their world in turmoil – a conflict that will involve the Spirit World, as well.

Who Will Like It: Kids, adults, fans of Avatar: The Last Airbender and Legend of Korra, action anime fans. Fans of color looking for representation that isn’t focused on suffering or overcoming obstacles.

Beware: Fast-paced and fragmented, this is definitely a western comic.

 

 

Title: Bingo Love by Tee Franklin (Author),‎ Jenn St. Onge (Artist),‎ Joy San (Artist),‎ Genevieve FT (Artist)

1 volume

What It’s About: When Hazel Johnson and Mari McCray met at church bingo in 1963, it was love at first sight. Forced apart by their families and society, Hazel and Mari both marry young men and have families. Decades later, now in their mid-’60s, Hazel and Mari reunite again at a church bingo hall. Realizing their love for each other is still alive, what these grandmothers do next takes absolute strength and courage.

Beware: LGBTQ comics about black women are rare – you may find yourselves weeping with joy at finding such a good one. 

 

 This manga is not Yuri, but is gay and you definitely want to add it to your orders!

Title:  My Brother’s Husband by Gengoroh Tagame

Volume 1| Volume 2 

What It’s About:  This adult life drama follows Mike Flanagan, a gay man from Canada who visits his late brother’s home in Japan, in order to learn about his childhood. He meets he husband’s estranged brother, Yaichi, who now has to deal with things he never thought he’d have to deal with, like his brother Ryoji’s sexuality. 

Who Will Like It:  People looking for wholesome, non-sexual gay representation, or a good comic to recommend to a family member with passive homophobia or ignorance about being gay.

Beware: Like Bingo Love, you may be prone to weeping with relief.

***

There’s a lot on the list and more on the Store, but we’re going to wrap it up here. Next time I’ll drop some anime titles and some of other fun stuff!

Send to Kindle




Yuri Manga: Hana & Hina Afterschool, Volume 2 (English)

November 16th, 2017

In Volume 1, Hana and her kouhai (at school and at their illicit afterschool job in a characters goods shop), Hina, have become friendly and. Hana is also starting to feel things she’s never felt before, although she doesn’t yet have a name for them.

In Volume 2 of Hana & Hina Afterschool, Hina, however feels more than just “friendly.” Hina does have a name for those feelings, but it isn’t a good name. She’s concerned about getting too close, too intense.

When they spend a little time alone together, Hina’s fears are realized, and Hana’s interest is piqued. Both have no idea what to do ot say, but it looks like they won’t be able to work together a while anyway….so why is Hana’s heart pounding so hard? And why is Hina avoiding her?

Volume 2 has all the hallmarks of Morinaga Milk-sensei’s typical “tension before recognition/confession”, the space she works so well. Will they break past the barriers and figure out what we can all see? Well..yes, we know they will, so tune into Volume 3 when it hits shelves at the end of the month!

Ratings:

Art – 8
Story – 7
Characters – 7
Service – 4
Yuri – 5 for Maiko

Overall – 7 +1 for the existence of a former girlfriend.

I’m always hopeful that there’ll be some LGBTQ content in Morinaga’s work someday.

Send to Kindle




Yuri Manga: MURCIÉLAGO, Volume 4 (English)

November 15th, 2017

In Volume 4 of MURCIÉLAGO, by Yoshimurkana, terrible, awful violent things are going on a private girls-only school, Virginal Rose. So who better to send in than Koumori Kuroko, self-indulgent lesbian and part-time serial killer?

I love this volume. Yes, it’s full of horrible, terrible things happening to young women, most of whom don’t deserve it, but it also contains consensual adult lesbian sex drawn unappealingly, and one of the best sword vs naginata fights I’ve ever read, between Chiyo and Teresa. No joke – this is a really good fight.

This also is the first glimpse we’ve had behind Chiyo’s facade of pretending to not care about Kuroko, too. So that’s two confirmed lesbian characters.

We also get to see a couple of different ways for Hinako to fly her freak flag. I honestly believe that the video game she designed using only herself as a character is the more disturbing way. (And it’s a joke that will not go away for some time, as well.)

Ratings:

Art – 6 Even when it’s supposed to be “pretty” it’s really ugly
Story – 7 Several kinds of violence and lesbian sex
Characters – 8 More Evil Psycho Lesbians per page than anything else I read
Service – 10 Nothin’ but
Yuri – 9 Not cute, not sweet, not pleasant, but still very Yuri

Overall – 9

As I said about the Japanese volume, “I’m not going to lie, this manga is ugly and gross in many ways, but I really like it. I’m not recommending it. I just like it.”

Volume 5. which will put us into my second-least favorite arc so far (because there’s so many degrees of horrible between one arc where girls are killed horribly than another), comes out in January 2018.

Send to Kindle




Seven Seas Licenses “My Solo Exchange Diary” by Kabi Nagata

November 14th, 2017

“Seven Seas Entertainment is thrilled to announce the license acquisition of the manga My Solo Exchange Diary by Nagata Kabi, the heavily requested sequel to 2017’s smash hit My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness!

In this follow-up to the viral sensation, Nagata Kabi uses engaging diary comics to explore her personal issues surrounding mental health, identity, and intimacy. Her relationship with her parents is growing more difficult than ever, and she struggles with the idea of living alone for the first time. Join her on her heart-wrenching, relatable journey through the challenges of adulthood.

Seven Seas will publish the My Solo Exchange Diary manga title for the first time in North America on June 5, 2018 for $13.99 USA / $16.99 CAN.”

The Japanese volume, Hitori Koukannikki (一人交換日記), will be available in December 2017 from East Press.

Send to Kindle




Western Comic: Strong Female Protagonist, Volume 2 (English)

November 13th, 2017

In 2015, Molly Ostertag and Brennan Lee Mulligan successfully crowdfunded the first volume of their webcomic, Strong Female Protagonist. I positively gushed about it in my review, because it provided me with all the nuance and adult thought I had ever craved in a comic. And this year, Molly and Brennan concluded a second successful Kickstarter for Volume 2. 

Strong Female Protagonist, Volume 2 is an amazing, thoughtful, densely-written, nuanced superhero comic.

Volume 1 was pretty intense, so, one has to ask, where does the series go in Volume 2? I’m not going to lie to you, it goes in a very dark direction…but one that makes perfect sense and is wholly consistent with the idea of “super-powered people in the real world.”

While Allison is attempting to have what approaches a normal life at school, she is 1) developing new powers and 2) still struggling with the collateral damage caused by her work as a “hero.” She’s trying to date, and finding herself encountering serious social problems, including an increasing need for inclusiveness and understanding and a rejection of privilege…all to a backdrop of a government which wants to register all biodynamics.  And, on top of all of this, Alison thinks that one of her former teammates may be behind a rash of murders. It’s a lot to handle for Alison…and the reader.

There are a few bright spots, even in the middle of this. Significantly, Feral’s story is given an almost miraculous handwave, which allows her to use her biodynamic body to help people and live a more normal life. And so, we are treated to Feral and Alison going out to a lesbian bar and Feral naturally picking up a few women. Who wouldn’t love her? 

Ratings:

Art – 8 Clear, strong art
Story – 10 All the nuance. ALL OF IT.
Characters – 9
LGBTQ – 3 Feral, ftw!

Overall – 9

Strong Female Protagonist, Volume 2 is not yet available in retail, but if you have ever asked yourself, “No, seriously, what would it be like to have superheroes in the real world?” this should go on your holiday wish-list when it becomes available. In the meantime, feel free to hop over to the Strong Female Protagonist website for the heads up when it goes on sale.

Send to Kindle