Tuesday, February 20, 2018

New Manga Series Releases 2018

Wondering what manga is making its way from Japan to North America this year?

Here are 10 new manga releases that I am keeping an eye on in 2018.

10. Laid Back Camp by Afro

Published by Yen Press in March 2018

Genre: Slice of Life

I'm watching the Laid Back Camp anime this season and really enjoying it.

I can see this possibly being a story which is more enjoyable as anime, with color bringing the natural landscapes to life and music adding to the relaxing tone, but I will check out the manga when it's out.

Rin enjoys camping by herself in the winter where she can relax alone.  But her alone time comes crashing to a halt when new schoolmate Nadeshiko stumbles upon her.   

Will Rin learn the joy of sharing her hobby with new friends?

9. Napping Princess by Kenji Kamiyama & Hana Ichika

Published by Yen Press in April 2018

Genres: Fantasy, Mecha, Adventure

Kakone becomes the princess of Heartland in her dreams where her kingdom wars with machines.  Suddenly, her dreams and reality begin to collide.

Will she be captured by the enemy now that danger is in both worlds?

8. Hatsu* Haru by Shizuki Fujisawa

Published by Yen Press in June 2018

Genres: Shoujo, Romance, School Drama

A playboy and a tomboy girl become an unlikely couple.

Basically...I check out all the shoujo, so this tiny synopsis is enough for me to put it on a watchlist.

7. Otakoi - Otaku Can't Fall in Love!? by Fujita

Published by Kodansha in April 2018

Genres: Comedy, Romance

Two childhood nerds meet again at work in their adult lives and begin dating. People think they are the perfect couple, not knowing the truth about their passionate hobbies, gaming and BL manga.  

Can they keep their secret lives, professional careers, and relationship going?

6. That Blue Sky Feeling (Sorairo Flutter) by Okura and Coma Hashii

Published by Viz Summer 2018

Genres: School Drama, Romance

New transfer student Noshiro becomes curious about the outcast classmate Sanada who is always alone and rumored to be gay.

This manga states it is a romance, but not who the romance occurs between.

It appears that this story could be one which includes an LGBT male in a non-yaoi, non-shounen ai, story. Though information online is a bit vague and contradictory, so let's read it and find out.

5. Giant Spider and Me by Kikori Morino

Published by Seven Seas in February 2018

Genres: Fantasy, Slice of Life

This manga was just released and has some of the cutest art I have seen in a while.

In a post apocalyptic world, life can become very lonely. That is until you find someone to share your days with. Even if that someone is a giant spider, life can become more wonderful with companionship.

As long as you're not Arachnophobic, of course.

4. Yuuna and the Haunted Hot Spring by Tadahiro Miura

Published by Seven Seas in May 2018

Genres: Comedy, Romance, Harem, Supernatural

High schooler Kogarashi moves into an abandoned hot spring turned boarding house.  He can live rent free if he exorcises the place of all the ghosts.

But an unexpected twist is thrown at him when he meets Yuuna, the ghost of a beautiful girl.  Can he possibly help save her? 

This manga doesn't state that its an ecchi, but it looks like it could be.

3. Konohana Kitan by Sakuya Amano

Published by Tokyo Pop in June 2018

Genres: Slice of Life, Shoujo Ai, Supernatural

Fox Girls running a bathhouse for the supernatural.  Each girl comes with a backstory & does her best to serve the extraordinary clientele. 

This sweet story is told in episodic tales that range in impact from cute & silly to meaningfully heartwarming. It's sure to brighten your day.

I enjoyed watching this anime last season & hope the manga will offer more to this adorable story.

2. How to Treat Magical Beasts by Kajiya

Published by Seven Seas in May 2018

Genre: Fantasy

The magical beasts of the world are fading away as science replaces magic as the dominant worldview.  

Young mage Ziska becomes an apprentice to a veterinarian for magical creatures, with the hopes of finding a way to save them.

1. Short Cake Cake by Morishita Suu

Published by Shojo Beat in August 2018

Genres: Shoujo, Boarding House Drama

I always thought that we would eventually get an English release of Morishita Suu's previous series Hibi Chou Chou, but it seems that we will be getting her newest series instead.  

Both series are great.  I enjoy the style of Short Cake Cake.  The backgrounds get pretty detailed and the fashion is great.

Our levelheaded protagonist, Ten, is an interesting character to experience this new life through.  

Its a fun series about teens balancing school with their life in the boardinghouse, and possibly some romance too.

Honorable Mention

Little Witch Academia by You Yoshinari & Keisuke Sato

Published by Yen Press in June 2018

Genre: Fantasy, Magic School

I have such a love/hate relationship with Little Witch Academia.

I am a sucker for Magical School Stories.  I love the setting and the world.  I just really don't like the characters.  

I enjoyed the first two movies quite a bit and was extremely excited for the full anime series, but when I tried to watch it, the girls annoyed me so much that it took me out of the story.

That being said, I actually own the Japanese volume 1 of the manga because the art is awesome.  I might check out the English release.

Perhaps the girls won't annoy me as much on paper.

Silver Spoon by Hiromu Arakawa 

Published by Yen Press in February 2018

Genre: Slice of Life, Agriculture School

This is another series from the mangaka that gave us Fullmetal Alchemist.

So many people love this anime.  I watched about half of it and I could see the appeal, however the farming plot just does nothing for me.

I love a rural setting, but the school for farming was not as rustically exciting to me. 

This manga depicts the realities of farming, which most viewers find fascinating.  I also intellectually appreciate it for doing this, and think everyone should take an interest in where our food comes from.

However, I actually don't eat animals, and because of that I found the content less appealing.

Even though it didn't work for me, this might be a story for you to enjoy.  Check out this new release and learn more about how farming works from a mangaka who grew up on one.

Forbidden Scrollery by Moe Harukawa

Published by Yen Press in November 2017

Genres: Supernatural, Yokai, Slice of Life

As you might have noticed, this series actually came out at the end of 2017, however, the bulk of the series will come out this year.  

I feel like this series is flying way under the radar and want to promote it to you. Its perfect for any fans of Cute Girls Doing Cute Things, or, Yokai & Japanese Folklore.

These girls live in a fantasy, supernatural, village with a magic bookshop and plenty of mischievous beings all around.

Its like Magical Girls in a fantasy Edo period, and I was SO SURPRISED we got an English release.

What new Manga releases are you anticipating this year?  

Do you keep up with Japanese releases and pine for them to get an English translation like I do?

Why do we do it?  It's torturous.

Thanks for reading!

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