Back in business after after a short lull in activity on the site, I wanted to show off some of the awesome finds we had during two trips to New York this past winter. While both SF and NYC have equally impressive Kinokuniya stores for new English manga releases, New York wins the manga arms race because of one secret weapon, nestled midtown about a block from the New York Public Library... BOOK-OFF!
BOOK-OFF is used-book chain that's pretty ubiquitous in Japan, but only a few exist in the States in LA, Honolulu and New York. For us, this shop (and more specifically, the second-floor used Manga valhalla) is a required stop whenever we're lucky enough to make it out East.
These manga stacks are actually where we've found some of the source materials for past scanlations we've done. The only downside to the place is that the second floor is REALLY HOT and STUFFY (we think intentionally to keep people from standing and reading for hours on end). So, here are some pics of recent gems... YES, this post is basically us bragging about awesome shit we got for cheap!
Osamu Tezuka's CRIME AND PUNISHMENT!
As some of you may know, Tezuka did tackle a few classics of Western Lit in manga form (the other most notable being Faust). Hearing about this firsthand at the Tezuka Museum in Kansai, I was both baffled and excited to hear that Tezuka had ventured to take on the canonical, existential tale of Raskolnikov. The story is really dense, even in comic form (duh) and the panel work is a weird mix of his 1950s style and more experimental layouts-- for example, holding the fixed and limited vantage point of the stairwell for pages and pages, while we know that Raskolnikov is inside killing the old pawnbroker and workmen are just down the stairs (in and out of the bottom of the panel) was an intense and interesting choice.
It's also vaguely weird and compelling to see the conflict between the detective Porfiry and Raskolnikov portrayed by Tezuka's archetypal cast of characters.
I'm not sure that Tezuka's Crime and Punishment is that hard to track down in Japan, but it seems most American fans of Buddha, Astroboy and Phoenix might not yet be aware of it. You can read more details on the Tezuka site. Please enjoy these pics... (Oh, and in case you were wondering, he DOES manage to polish off the entire novel in only 130 pages of manga!)
CHECK OUT THESE OTHER FINDS
The insane and gross The Tale of Hardy Hendrix By Manga Taro
Kasei Rumba (Martian Rumba) by my man, Yoshida Sensha!
And perhaps the greatest find we could possibly hope for: An original, hardcover COLOR edition of UTSURUN DESU Vol.1 (伝染るんです) by Yoshida Sensha!
..and finally, LONG LIVE THE KING!!
Happy non-religious Vernal Equinox today! More manga news posts are coming soon. Regarding our scanlations, last night I finally finished the translation for Yoshida Sensha's The Young Bandit and passed the script on to Evan for touch-up and lettering. More soon, I proooooomise!