Vertical Licenses Three Manga Titles

Vertical, Inc. announced during the company’s Katsucon panel that it has acquired the license for the following three manga:

  • Ajin
  • Witch Craft Works
  • The Garden of Words

The company is planning to debut all three titles in Fall 2014.

Ed Chavez From Vertical Interviewed on ANNCast

On this week’s ANNCast, Zac Bertschy interviews Ed Chavez, publisher and marketing manager from Vertical, Inc.

You can check out the podcast by clicking the link below:

ANNCast Episode 178 – Vertical Vortex

Vertical Licenses Tonari no Seki-kun

Vertical, Inc. announced on Anime News Network’s ANNCast podcast that it has acquired the license for the Tonari no Seki-kun manga.

The company will begin releasing the series in Fall 2014, and that it will be releasing a new volume in North America “every two months or so.”

Manga Review: “Limit” Volume One

Limit Volume One is a manga by Keiko Suenobu, and it was published in North America by Vertical, Inc. in 2012. I don’t see any kind of a rating on this volume, but after reading it, I would recommend this series for older teens.

Limit focuses on a high school girl named Konno. She hangs with a popular girl named Sakura and Sakura’s friend, Haru. Arisa Morishige, a girl in their class, gets bullied for being so gloomy and being by herself. When Arisa ends up being the one to select what order the classes are going for their upcoming trip and ends up drawing out “last,” she gets picked on. We also see students picking on her for the manga she’s drawing.

When their class goes on the trip, the bus driver collapses. The teacher tries to take control of the wheel, but the bus goes over a cliff. When Konno comes to, she discovers that Sakura and everyone else she sees on the bus is dead. When she tries to call for help, she can’t get a signal. Konno manages to make it out of the bus, and she discovers that a small group of her classmates also survived: Haru, Usui, Arisa, and Kamiya. Kamiya advises everyone to stay put, because it will increase their chances of being found.

Arisa is doing a tarot card reading in a cave, and is overjoyed to hear that Sakura has died. She starts laughing hysterically. After Haru tries to attack Arisa with a log, Arisa arms herself with a scythe that was brought for the trip and defends herself. Using the scythe as leverage, Arisa makes herself the one in charge of the group to get revenge for all of the bullying she had to endure. The rest of the volume follows what happens after she takes charge.

One word can sum up this volume: intense. The back cover makes a reference to recalling themes from Lord of the Flies, and I think this is a very apt thing to say. My older daughter, who read Lord of the Flies not too long ago for her English class, also read this volume. In her opinion, she found Limit to be scarier than Lord of the Flies, because the story in Limit progresses much faster than in Lord of the Flies; the dynamics established at the end of this volume of Limit doesn’t come until around the end of Lord of the Flies.

When it comes to the bullying aspect of Limit, it makes the bullying that happened in the first few volumes of A Devil and Her Love Song almost seem tame. During this volume of Limit, we learn that Konno had been bullied for a couple of weeks in junior high, which is why she just goes with the flow and basically follows what the people she’s with are doing.

Earlier I recommended Limit for older teens, and I came to this recommendation between the intensity of the story as a whole, the bullying aspect, and how the story evolves after the girls are stranded. It’d an interesting story, but I think it may be a little too much for younger teens to handle.

While Limit is intense, I was very intrigued by the story and I couldn’t put it down. At some point, I will need to track down the second volume of Limit in order to find out what happens next.

I wrote this review after reading a copy of Limit Volume One that I checked out through the King County Library System.

Manga Review: “Chi’s Sweet Home” Volume 10

Chi’s Sweet Home Volume 10 is a manga by Kanata Konami, and it was published in North America by Vertical, Inc. in 2013. Chi’s Sweet Home is “flipped,” which means that it reads more like an American book than a traditional Japanese manga. Another unusual aspect about this series is the fact that all of the pages are in color; typically, manga will either be all black and white, or only have a few color pages mixed in with the black and white ones. There isn’t a rating printed anywhere on this volume, but I would personally recommend Chi’s Sweet Home to manga readers of all ages.

Chi’s Sweet Home follows the adventures of a kitten named Chi. At the beginning of the series, Chi was separated from her mother. The lost kitten was found and taken in by a family with a young son. Not only does Chi learn about the world around her, but her adoptive family goes through changes and learns lessons about taking care of a cat.

This volume sees Yohei’s father getting a new camera and taking pictures of Chi with it. One day, while he’s out for a walk and taking pictures, he comes across a lost kitten poster with a picture of Chi on it. He takes a picture of the poster and debates whether or not to tell his family about it. Before he gets the chance to talk to them, his wife finds the picture on the camera and confronts her husband about it. Neither one tells Yohei about it, but they spend the volume debating whether or not they should contact Chi’s real family or to keep her for themselves.

Meanwhile, Chi continues to wander around on her own, and she meets a couple of kittens in the park that she’s never played with before. At one point, when Blackie sees them playing together, he comments that the three of them look rather similar. Unbeknownst to Chi, she is actually playing with her siblings. In addition to this, Chi has finally become cognizant enough to realize that Yohei and his parents look nothing like her, since they don’t have a tail; she also realizes that she can’t understand what they’re saying.

Between Yohei’s father finding the lost kitten poster, Chi unknowingly meeting her siblings, and Chi finally starting have a realization that she is different from Yohei and his parents, I have a feeling that Chi’s Sweet Home may be getting closer to reaching its conclusion. As a parent, I can really feel for Yohei’s parents and their dilemma. On the one hand, they want to do the right thing and return Chi to her rightful owners; on the other hand, Chi and Yohei have bonded so much that they would feel guilty if they sent Chi away. I’m very curious to see how Konami is going to handle this particular plot element in the next volume of the series.

Just like the previous volumes of Chi’s Sweet Home, Volume 10 is a quick and enjoyable read. The series can be enjoyed by both younger readers who are just starting to read manga and by long-time manga readers who are cat lovers or who enjoy reading stories about cats.

I wrote this review after reading a copy of Chi’s Sweet Home Volume 10 that I checked out through the King County Library System.

Vertical Licenses Moyoco Anno’s In the Clothes Named Fat Manga

Vertical, Inc. announced at the company’s panel at New York Comic Con that it has acquired the license for Moyoco Anno’s In the Clothes Named Fat manga.

The company says it plans to release this one-volume manga in Summer 2014.

Vertical Licenses Prophecy Manga

Vertical, Inc. announced during the company’s Anime Weekend Atlanta panel that it has licensed Tetsuya Tsutui’s Prophecy manga.

The manga focuses on the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department Cyber Crime Division as they pursue a criminal arsonist.

Vertical Licenses What Did You Eat Yesterday?

Vertical, Inc. announced during the company’s panel at Otakon that is has acquired the license for Fumi Yoshinaga’s What Did You Eat Yesterday? manga.

The company says the first volume of the series will ship in March 2014, and will retail for US$12.95. New volumes are scheduled to ship every two months.

Vertical Licenses Moyoco Anno’s Insufficient Direction Manga

Vertical, Inc. announced during the company’s Anime Expo panel that it has acquired the licenses for Moyoco Anno’s Insufficient Direction one-shot autobiographical essay manga. The manga focuses on Anno’s married life with her husband, anime director Hideaki Anno.

At this time, no further information about the release of Insufficient Direction has been announced.