I’m going to lead with a new license announcement from the Tokyopop panel at Comic-Con International: Koge-Donbo’s Naki Shōjo no Tame no Pavane (Pavane for a Dead Girl), a story about a musical prodigy who makes a deal with the angel of death. Tokyopop’s Marco Pavia told me they have another new title as well, Ghost Face, by Min-Woo Hyung, the creator of Priest.
The other big manga news is that Drawn & Quarterly has the license for two Shigeru Mizuki manga, Onward Towards Our Noble Deaths and NonNonBā. (If you’re wondering why that sounds vaguely familiar, it’s because NonNonBā won the Best Album Award at the Angoulême International Comics Festival a couple of years back. This is very good news for those who like their manga on the literary side. And the D&Q folks had to be smiling pretty broadly after Yoshihiro Tatsumi’s autobiographical tome A Drifting Life took two Eisner awards.
Meanwhile, Yen Press announced a number of new titles, including Otoyome-Gatari (The Bride’s Stories) by Emma creator Kaoru Mori, as well as Highschool of the Dead, Aron’s Absurd Armada, Betrayal Knows My Name, and yet another arc of Higurashi When They Cry. They also revealed that Yen Plus magazine, which stopped print publication this month, will continue as an online anthology that will be free the first month and cost the reader $2.99 per month after that.
There was one bit of sobering news, a reminder that things are still not all they should be in the manga industry: Del Rey’s indefatigable marketing manager Ali T. Kokmen is no longer with the company. Ali is well-liked in the industry, and hopefully some smart manga company will snap him up soon.