By Rachel Menendez
VIZ Media, the largest distributor and licensor of anime and manga in North America, will launch six new manga (graphic novel) series during June that will be offered for digital download within the Viz Manga App for the Apple iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch.
Scheduled to make their North American digital debuts in June are the shojo dramas of BACKSTAGE PRINCE and THE STORY OF SAIUNKOKU. More shojo fun follows on June 20th with the launch of DENGEKI DAISY and AI ORE!, along with the critically acclaimed CROSS GAME.
Finally, June 27th sees the debut of the lush and contemplative CHILDREN OF THE SEA. Updates to 22 other popular VIZ Media digital manga series are also scheduled.
The Viz Manga App is now available for free for the iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch devices through the iTunes Store and all manga volumes are generally available for purchase and download in the U.S. and Canada.
Keep up to date with your manga reading by getting to know the following series to be found for download through Viz Media:
AI ORE! Vol. 1 · Rated “T+” for Older Teens · Available June 20th
AI ORE! takes readers on a rollicking rock-and-roll ride in this new series by Mayu Shinjo, the creator of SENSUAL PHRASE. Mizuki is the female “prince” of her all-girls school and the lead guitarist in an all-girl rock band. Akira is the male “princess” of his all-boys school and wants to join her band. Love may be on his mind, but romance is difficult when everyone keeps mistaking Mizuki for a boy and Akira for a girl!
BACKSTAGE PRINCE, Vol. 1 · Rated “T” for Teens · Available Now!
Set against the vivid backdrop of Kabuki theatre, Kanoko Sakurakoji’s BACKSTAGE PRINCE introduces readers to Akari, who is totally clueless about kabuki – and boys – but is eager to learn about both. Her first encounter with Ryusei doesn’t go very well, but with the help of a cat named Mr. Ken, the two teenagers quickly become the prince AND princess of kabuki. Love was never so dramatic!
CHILDREN OF THE SEA, Vol. 1 · Rated “T+” for Older Teens · Available June 27th
Daisuke Igarashi’s riveting manga series CHILDREN OF THE SEA is an intriguing aquatic adventure that also delivers a strong message about preserving the world’s oceans. When Ruka was younger, she saw a ghost in the water at the aquarium where her dad works. Now she feels drawn toward the aquarium and the two mysterious boys she meets there, Umi and Sora. They were raised by dugongs and hear the same strange calls from the sea as she does. Ruka’s dad and the other adults who work at the aquarium are only distantly aware of what the children are experiencing as they get caught up in the mystery of the worldwide disappearance of the oceans’ fish.
CROSS GAME, Vol. 1 · Rated “T” for Teens · Available June 20th
CROSS GAME is a moving drama that is heartfelt and true, yet in the brilliant hands of creator Mitsuru Adachi. The story delightfully flows with a light and amusing touch and centers on a boy named Ko, a family of four sisters that live down the street, and the game of baseball. This poignant coming-of-age story will change readers’ perception of what shonen manga can be.
DENGEKI DAISY, Vol. 1 · Rated “T+” for Older Teens · Available June 20th
After orphan Teru Kurebayashi loses her beloved older brother, she finds solace in the text messages she exchanges with DAISY, an enigmatic figure who can only be reached through the cell phone her brother left behind. Meanwhile, mysterious Tasuku Kurosaki always seems to be around whenever Teru needs help. Could DAISY be a lot closer than Teru thinks?
SMILE: PRAY FOR JAPAN, Vols. 3 & 4 · Available Now!
Legendary manga creator Takehiko Inoue (SLAM DUNK, VAGABOND, REAL, and more), through the use of his iPad and an app called Zen Brush, drew breathtaking and touching illustrations as a gesture of support for the victims of the earthquake and tsunami that struck on March 11th. All VIZ Media proceeds from these purchases will be donated directly to the Japanese Red Cross Society.
THE STORY OF SAIUNKOKU, Vol. 1 · Rated “T” for Teens · Available Now!
THE STORY OF SAIUNKOKU will draw readers in with its beautiful artwork and story of a young girl’s rise in the imperial court to become a royal confidant and advisor. Shurei Hong, destitute but of noble birth, has always dreamed of working as a civil servant in the imperial court of Saiunkoku, but women are barred from holding office. The emperor Ryuki, however, refuses to take command, leaving everything to his advisors. Shurei is asked to become a consort to the emperor to persuade the ne’er-do-well ruler to govern.
Contact the Author: RachelMenendez@MoviesIDidntGet.com