[Q&A] Scarlet Beriko answers your questions!

A few of you may remember that I run the Twitter account @scaberi_news, a fan account where I mostly translate Scarlet Beriko’s tweets and help out during her live streams to translate your questions or her answers. I was lucky enough to meet her in Paris for Y/CON in late 2018, and I was recently also allowed to create English subs for her very first Youtube video where she teaches you How To Draw Digital Manga.

So when the English release date of the first volume of her current manga series Jealousy came around, we figured we should collaborate to do a Q&A for international fans! A few weeks ago we asked you on Twitter to send in your questions, and you did send a lot of them! So let’s dig right in!


About Scarlet Beriko

Q: When did you start drawing? Why did you become a manga artist?

A: I started drawing so long ago, I don’t even remember anymore. At first I became a mangaka, because then I would be able to draw. That’s all there was to it. Now there’s more to it.

Q: Could you please tell us a bit about your journey as an artist?

A: I really liked to draw, so I wanted to become an illustrator, but 15 years ago I wasn’t able to make a living from illustrating alone, so when I started drawing manga, I realized that manga was what actually suited me the best.
I submitted my work to my current publisher (Shinshokan) as part of a manga contest and won a lower price, and since then I’ve been working with my current editor.

Q: Your artwork has always been such an inspiration to me and many others! What inspires you? Are there any other artists that have led you to the style you have today? Is there any advice you can give to younger artists seeking a similar career path?

A: There have been a lot of artists who inspired me ever since I was a kid, so I can’t name a specific one. I learned from a bunch of artists, drew what I learned again and again and what remained are one or two things from each style. Those are what suit my art style best.
What I want to tell young artists is that you should first try copying your favorite artists. The more you draw, the more you’ll notice what suits your style, and only that will remain. That’s your individuality. And always draw asking yourself if you’re satisfied with what you’re currently drawing. Draw until you can say that you’re satisfied with your art.

Q: I’ve heard that being a mangaka is a very hard job. Do you manage to get some free time? If so, what do you like to do in your free time?

A: I actually think people who have to work a 9 to 5 job have it way harder ??
Work is always hard, no matter what kind of job it is. I can take breaks on my own responsibility and timing, so I don’t think of my job as very stressful.
On days I don’t work, I’ll read books or take care of my house plants.

She recently tweeted a video of her indoor garden:

Q: Do you have any hobbies?

A: Taking care of my house plants and watching movies or dramas/TV shows.

Q: Who is your favorite band and who do you listen to when working (apart from P!nk)?

A: Courtney Hadwin and Janis Joplin!
Recently I also listen to Grace VanderWaal and aurora a lot. In terms of Japanese artists I’d say Miyuki Nakajima.

Q: What is your go-to Starbucks order?

A: Soy latte with honey and cinnamon!

Q: Do you believe in astrology? If so, what are your favorite signs?

A: I often look up my horoscope. I’m an Aries, but there’s no specific sign I like in particular. I barely know any signs aside from my own tbh ?

Q: Who is your favorite (manga) artist?

A: I like the novelist Hanamura Mangetsu.

Q: What’s your favorite manga?

A: My own manga ?

Q: Who is your favorite character from all your works?

A: I like the series I’m currently drawing the best, so it’s Rogi Uichi!
That might change once I start a new series though.

Q: What is your favorite kind of character?

A: Characters where you never know what they’ll do next. Or characters who stay true to their desires.

Q: I would love to know how you start creating characters.

A: I’ll often start creating characters who I’d hate or find difficult to deal with in real life, or who are born from my own complexes, because I draw manga in order to change them into something positive for myself.

Q: I love your works and I always fall in love with your ukes so easily! I’d like to know if you have some weak spot (or even kink!) when it comes to ukes. If there’s something that makes you fall helplessly for a character.

A: When they accept the dumb parts of the seme.
When they think about the seme, “I’ll make you happy.”

Q: Are there any specific ship dynamics you like?

A: I really love master x slave relationships!
The master doing whatever stupid stuff he likes and the slave yearning for that with a sigh is just the best! I’m not into slave x master though.
And I think that’s about it?

Q: One thing that I love about your comics is how steamy the sex scenes are and I feel like the emotional build up to them is always perfect. How hard is it to balance good character development and spicy sex scenes? Any tips?

A: I don’t really think about it with my brain, but actually draw with feeling, so it’s hard to give advice on that. Sometimes I’ll reference gay porn, but since that is aimed at a male audience, I can’t reference it too much either. Hmm, I don’t really use references, sorry ?
There are a few lines I draw for myself so it won’t get too vulgar. I don’t draw massive amounts of “juice” or drool, and I definitely won’t draw a runny nose ?
What’s most important are the characters’ feelings in the scene.

Q: Have you ever thought of having a transgender person or a crossdresser as a main character in your stories? Aside from your beautiful oji-san [old man] character, I’d love to see more of your crossdressing characters xD

A: I’m sorry, I don’t have any concrete plans at the moment, but I also won’t say that I’ll never draw them in the future. ?

Q: How long does it take you to create each new story?

A: It has taken me anything from 5 minutes to 3 years.

Q: What is your most favorite kind of merchandise? (For example, keychains, postcards, and such)

A: Acrylic boards have kind of become the new shikishi for me, which I like a lot! They’re really pricey though ?

Shikishi are those square paper boards that are usually used by mangaka to sign and draw bonus art on:

Q: Did you already plan any new work in the future? And perhaps, a little spoil when it will be released? ? Or will you focus in your recent series and and update more chapters?

A: I want to focus on Jealousy right now, but there already are a bunch of manga I’d love to draw someday!

Q: If you could have any of your works animated, which would you choose and why?

A: I don’t really watch anime, so I’ve never thought about it. What do you think?

Q: If you could adapt your manga into live-action which one would you choose? Do you have any specific actors in mind that you’d like to cast for your live-action?

A: That’s so embarrassing, I can’t say it ?
But for Handa-san I’d choose Dean Norris ?

Q: Have you ever received letters from fans in other countries? If so, how does it make you as a mangaka feel?

A: It made me really happy to know that my books made it overseas. I’ve gotten letters from all sorts of places like Germany, France, USA, Hawaii and Russia.

Q: What place would you like to visit one day? Would love to see you come to the US one day to meet the fans.

A: I reeeeaaaaally want to go to the US!!

Fun fact: Scaberi doesn’t watch anime, but she’s a big fan of US TV shows like Drag Race or Shameless.

Q: Is there a chance we will get a spin-off of Jackass! with Miyoshi? He was such a lovable character and I’m sure we’d all love to see more of him!
[Hell yeah, we do!]

A: There is a chance! Please wait a little longer! ?


About Jealousy

Q: Who is your favorite character from Jealousy?

A: Rogi Uichi!

Q: I love their twisted love so much! How did you come up with Rogi?

A: In real life I don’t really like (or do even hate) people like Rogi and Akitora.
But these types of characters have a certain charm about them that’s hard to put into words. I really wanted to find out what that was, so I decided to draw them. I thought that this way I might be able to love them. And now they’re very dear to me.

Q: What’s your inspiration or motivation on making Yondaime Ooyamato Tatsuyuki and Jealousy?

A: They’re full of people who struggle with life. And I love these people.

Q: I’m waiting for the end of Jealousy to get a tattoo of Rogi and Akitora, so when do you think the last volume will be released?

A: WOW! That makes me so happy!
I’m sorry, I don’t know when it’ll come out overseas. But the story will end with volume 5, and volume 4 will come out in Japan in fall this year!

[All volumes of Jealousy came out about a year apart so far, so expect volume 5 to come out in Japan in fall 2021!]

Q: Do you think Asami could’ve been happier if she was in love with Asoda or would that never happen?

A: Guys like Asoda who would only ever do it missionary style are totally not Asami’s type. ? Asami will love Akitora no matter what, and she believes that Akitora needs her.

Q: Who is the hardest character to draw?

A: Akitora! Getting the balance in his face right is super hard.

Q: I’ve been trying to read Jealousy in Japanese, but it’ll be great to read it in English soon. I find Rogi to be so intriguing, and I love that you include interesting female characters, too.
My question is, will we ever find out how Rogi ended up with Reika?

A: Thank you for saying that you find Rogi interesting! (There are a lot of people who hate him ?)
I’m planning to draw Rogi and Reika’s actual relationship in the manga!

Q: I’m head over heels for your work! Especially the Jealousy series, and I’m beyond excited that it is being published now in English as well. Will you release a collection of your artworks in the future?

A: Thank you! It makes me really happy when people say that they love my current series! ?
Maybe you mean MTR? Nobody tells me when it’ll come out overseas. I hope it will though!

MTR: Motsunabe to Regent, her artbook which came out a year ago

Q: What is Akitora’s favorite food?

A: Yakisoba, Tonkotsu ramen, curry rice, omurice, meat balls, hamburger, steak and cola.

Q: Is Akitora in the present time still handsome? ? Will you reveal his present appearance any time soon?

A: Don’t worry, present Akitora will show up!

Q: What is the most difficult part or hardships you had when drawing manga?

A: The most difficult part of drawing manga must be creating the actual story. Picking out the most simple parts you want to convey from everything you’d like to include is the most difficult.

Q: Could you share with us any interesting or funny anecdotes while working in Jealousy?

A: I can’t really think of anything. Maybe that I was invited to a convention in France.

[Y/CON in Paris which focuses on LGBTQ+ fandom]

Q: Is the cover of the English version different from the original one? Can we expect any Omake?

A: The design of the title on the cover is different, I think. The art is the same! I’m afraid you’ll have to ask the publisher about any omake, I don’t know about that!

Q: Will Akitora and Rogi meet in the present time of Jealousy?

A: Look forward to it ??

Q: Is Tatsuyuki the real father of Reika?

A: Come again? LOL


As mentioned above, Scaberi has also recently released her first video in a new series about how to draw digital manga, so if you have any questions regarding that, don’t hesitate to leave a comment on her video here!

I would also like to thank her for doing this fun collaboration with me and I would also like to thank YOU for your cooperation! I hope we’ll get to do this again ?

I would also like to thank my friend @midoritako for helping me translate your questions into Japanese! ?

Feel free to also check out my other posts about Scarlet Beriko’s works by clicking on the tag or the related posts below ?

My Yeah’s and Errrrr’s of Anime Winter 2020

We’re about 3 weeks into the current anime season, so I’d like to sum up my opinions on the stuff I’ve watched so far.

Errrrr…

Let’s get the ones I’m not really sure of out of the way first:

Hatena☆Illusion

Hatena Illusion

This one has an interesting setting and promises teenagers looking for magical items while acting like master thieves with some “accidental” erotic moments, but the only thing we’ve got so far are the magical items and everyone declaring all sorts of things they don’t follow up on. There was also no ecchi in the first two episodes despite the tag, so I dropped it after that, since it just felt lacking in all sorts of places.

A Destructive God Sits Next To Me

A normal high-schooler annoyed by the chuunibyou dude who keeps bugging him, saying he was his old comrade in some dark and magical war many reincarnations ago. Our main tries his best not to react to the dude’s weirdness, but keeps losing it on a regular basis. Idek why it’s an Errrrr… for me, it just hasn’t really grabbed my permanent interest yet.

Seton Academy: Join the Pack!

I generally like this anime full of anime girls with animal ears and tails, but there are still a few things which bug me. For one, I’m really not a harem anime person, and I have this constant fear that after you get used to this show’s comedy it’ll turn into yet another harem anime. I’m also a little sad that only the males in this show are actually furries and the girls only have ears and tails (or moss growing on their heads lol). But I’ll keep following it for now and hope for the best!

The Case Files of Jeweler Richard

This one had me excited at first since I like the character designer, but despite what little you learn about the main characters in the first episode, this feels more like a monster-of-the-week anime to me, except that the monsters are expensive minerals lol.

Yeah!

But now let’s go over to some good ones now!

Asteroid in Love

This one probably surprised me the most this season, since I only read the tags, but not the summary (lol). This one should definitely get a shoujo-ai/yuri tag, cuz there’s some cute ladies romance going on!

Science Fell in Love, So I Tried to Prove it

This one is a super hilarious romcom about STEM students trying to scientifically prove that they’re in love with each other. The anime premiered with three episodes at once on Crunchyroll, but is now updating weekly every Friday. As a fellow STEM student I appreciate the amount of data science and their hilarious awkwardness. The rate of 2 men to 3 women in their lab is kinda unrealistic tho lol

Somali and the Forest Spirit

An anime season doesn’t feel complete for me if there’s no anime about a parent and their child. Somali and the golem she calls her dad aren’t actually related to each other, but are still a very precious couple I can’t wait to see more of. Somali is a happy child and very curious of the world around her, and “dad” is a golem whose behavior reminds me of a robot and he keeps pretending he doesn’t have any emotions (though we all know he loves the girl a lot ?).

Uchitama?! Have you seen my Tama?

Adorable. SO adorable. That’s actually all there is to say about this anime, but that’s also all that really matters. The characters are interesting, the stories are fun and not too deep and this anime will just make you feel good after a hard day.

In/Spectre

I would like to officially dub this anime “king of cliffhangers”. The plot is SUPER interesting, but every episode makes sure to bring up a major plot point at the end that will definitely be cut off, so its resolve can open the next episode. Well, at least that’s how they can be sure I won’t ever drop this show ?‍♀️

If My Favorite Pop Idol Made it to the Budokan, I Would Die

This was the one anime I really didn’t ever think I would come to like as much as I do now. My initial thought was “how entertaining can a show about an idol otaku actually be?” like the weirdo that I am, but it’s a really lovely show so far. The main character is an idol otaku and her favorite is an actually quite unpopular girl from a minor girl group. She visits all of her concerts, buys out all of her favorite’s available merch and together with her otaku friends she waits in the scorching summer heat all day to be one of the first to enter the concert location. One of her friends looks like the stereotypical otaku featured in pretty much anything: an overweight dude with thick glasses, but also a really nice guy and I actually like him a lot. And the main’s favorite idol is a cute, shy girl who has trouble expressing how thankful she is to her for being her biggest (and for the longest time also only) fan which just makes her cuter.


I’m watching a few more anime (like Haikyuu, obviously), but this list would just keep going on if I didn’t stop here!

What are you watching this season? What did you drop? Or is there maybe a show you’re still unsure about?

19 no-brainer anime for the off-season

The end is nigh! And by that I mean the end of 2019, the decade and also the end of the current anime season, which means that most anime already ended and it’ll still take about 1-2 weeks for the new ones to start. So how should you waste your already not busy time until 2020? Here are 19 anime suggestions that won’t require you to use ANY part of your brain at all to ensure you’ll be able to relax as much as you possibly can before you have to go back to work/school/whatever!

(The list is in no particular order.)

Ani ni Tsukeru Kusuri wa Nai

A short series with three seasons about an older brother and his younger sister who are constantly broke and fight all the time.

Tanaka-kun is Always Listless

This show is SO slow-paced that you’d sometimes think the video froze, but don’t worry, that’s just the anime lol. Tanaka-kun is a really lazy guy who aims for the ultimately lazy lifestyle. He’s supported by his best friend Ohta (who I want to welcome as my wife asap).

As Miss Beelzebub Likes It

A cute anime about the head of hell and her secretary with lots of fluff and a dash of romance!

Working Buddies

A short anime with two seasons about two cats in college who try out lots of different part-time jobs.

RobiHachi

Robby is really unlucky in regards to money, so when he gets a credit from a shady guy and can’t pay it back, he hurriedly leaves Mars trying to reach Isekandar, a distant and legendary planet in the Milky Way that is said to bring happiness to those who go there. What he doesn’t notice is that the guy who was supposed to collect the money, a young man named Hachi who loves to try food from places recommended online, is still inside his ship. The two end up making the trip together with stops on various planets while trying to escape from the grasp of the loan shark.
This one even has an easter egg for fans of the anime Cute High Earth Defense Club LOVE!

Magical Circle Guru Guru

A beautiful parody of any old JRPG crossed with a dash of magical girl and a ridiculous amount of really random humor.

Tsuredure Children

A romcom series about high school love in all its forms ?

Gakuen Handsome

Originally a BL dating sim parody game, this anime is full of bad humor, bad art and void of any reason at all.

Orenchi no Furo Jijou

Wakasa is a high schooler who lives alone and one day on his way home he picks up a merman who ends up living in his bath tub!

Touken Ranbu: Hanamaru

A slice-of-life series about the Japanese game Touken Ranbu about sword guys and how they spend their days between battles at the citadel!

Sweetness and Lightning

A series about a young single father and his 5 year-old daughter who lost his wife not too long ago and struggles with raising the child on his own. While watching cherry blossoms in a park the two meet one of his students who invites them to cook together at her mother’s tiny restaurant! A wholesome series full of love and food.

Barakamon

Handa Seishuu is a young and successful calligrapher with a huge ego. That ego is also the reason he ends up exiled on an island in southern Japan after punching an elderly veteran calligrapher in the face. Unlike the capital, the tiny town he ends up in is full of friendly folks who are sometimes (most of the time) a little too friendly for Handa’s taste. Surrounded by little children, closeted fujoshi and a whole lot of nothing he’s supposed to reflect and tries to develop his calligraphy style.

Blend S

High school girl Maika Sakuranomiya has trouble finding a part-time job because of how scary she looks when smiling. However, she is scouted one day by an Italian man who is also the manager of Stile, a café where its waitresses are given unique traits such as tsundere and younger sister. Maika is given a sadistic trait because of her looks and has to adopt a dominant and cruel persona when servicing customers, particularly masochist ones.

Hinamatsuri

Yoshifumi Nitta, a mid-level Yakuza of the Ashikawa-gumi, finds his normal life thrown into chaos when a girl from the future literally drops on his head without warning. Knowing nothing more than her name, Hina, and the fact that she has incredible psychokinetic powers, Yoshifumi reluctantly becomes her de facto father. However, Hina’s arrival sets off a chain reaction of events that affects everyone in the city, especially after more girls from the future arrive to bring her back or terminate her.

School Babysitters

After the sudden death of their parents, two young brothers named Ryūichi Kashima (a freshman in high school) and his younger brother Kotarō (a preschooler) are left orphaned and having no place to call home. The chairwoman of the prestigious Morinomiya Academy offers to take the boys into her care, giving them a new house and free tuition, on the condition that Ryuichi helps out with the school’s daycare center while also attending normal classes during school hours.

Servant x Service

An anime about new employees at a government office building. Yamagami Lucy (abbrev.) starts working there to seek revenge against the civil servant who approved her name (which has at least 15 first names), because it was the reason she was constantly bullied in school.

Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid

One night programmer Kobayashi gets drunk after work and ends up somewhere deep in the woods where she meets a hurt dragon and promises her to welcome her as a maid in her home. A few more dragons show up and find their place in modern human society.

Hozuki’s Coolheadedness

The story centers on demon ogre Hozuki who works under King Enma, the king and head judge of hell who determines what kind of hell the dead will be sent to. The serious-minded Hozuki attempts to manage and troubleshoot unusual problems which occur in the Japanese hell.

Gugure! Kokkuri-san

Kohina Ichimatsu is an expressionless elementary school girl who lives alone, proclaims herself to be a doll, and eats nothing but instant noodles. One day, she plays the Kokkuri game by herself and summons the fox spirit Kokkuri-san who, upon seeing her unhealthy lifestyle, takes it upon himself to become her guardian and raise her properly. Thus starts Kohina’s new life of being haunted by various unique spirits.


Scarlet Beriko 11th debut anniversary goods

I’m finally back with another post!

Scarlet Beriko, author of Yondaime Ooyamato Tatsuyuki, Jackass and Jealousy, is celebrating the 11th anniversary since her debut as a manga artist this year with a couple events in Japan where you could eat collaboration dishes, wander though an exhibition featuring her manga’s concept art and purchase a bunch of new goods!

On Twitter I was asked a lot where you can get your hands on the goods, and I’m glad to tell you that they’re finally available for order online! So without further ado, stretch out your grabby hands and let’s go!

Muffler towels

Jackass! Blue Muffler Towel with Bromaid Current price 2851 yen + proxy service fee

Yondaime Ooyamato Tatsuyuki Beige Muffler Towel with Bromaid Current price 2851 yen + proxy service fee

Jealousy Purple Muffler Towel with Bromaid Current price 2851 yen + proxy service fee

Chin Koushaku / Count Dick

Scaberi’s very own event mascot finally got his own line of merchandise ;D

Chin Koushaku Trading Acrylic Charm Set Current price 407 yen + proxy service fee

(CDJapan says the 3 charms in the pack are randomly selected but the sample image says there are all three types included in the set, so I’d like to believe the image instead lol)

Chin Koushaku Ramune & Vinyl Coaster Set “Monochrome” Current price 916 yen + proxy service fee

Chin Koushaku Ramune & Vinyl Coaster Set “Blue” Current price 916 yen + proxy service fee

(Ramune is a Japanese soda drink with a special bottle design!)

More Goods

Tatsuyuki Accessory Stand Current price 1833 yen + proxy service fee

(I already got mine a while ago and it’s SO PRETTY AAAAAH ???)

Yondaime / Jealousy Clear Files Set Current price 1018 yen + proxy service fee

Jealousy Connectable Acrylic Keychain Current price 712 yen + proxy service fee

Jealousy Canvas Board Current price 5092 yen + proxy service fee

Yondaime Ooyamato Tatsuyuki Jigsaw Puzzle (TORICO-exclusive frame & poster set) Current price 4787 yen + proxy service fee


Please note that the prices mentioned here can be changed in the store at any minute and do not include shipping!

And if those goods are not enough for you, feel free to check out my other post with Jealousy goods as well!

Rebranding time!

I’ve considered this for quite a while and now I’m finally doing it: the name change is here!

Those of you who are following me here or on social media know by now what this whole Sareru.net scheme is about, but it’s not so easy to figure out when you just see the URL or the name of the page/account on social media.

In order to attract more like-minded people and to let those people know with just a glance what I’m going on about all day, I’ve changed the name of this platform from just “Sareru.net” to “Sareru: The Lady Otaku” (the URL will of course stay the same).
Now everyone knows just by reading those few words that Sareru posts a bunch of things about anime and manga that the ladies enjoy!

I’m also planning to create a group on Facebook where we can all discuss and enjoy anime and manga, that aren’t just all screaming while fighting or gathering of tiddies in another world ??, so like my page and stay tuned for an announcement ?

Given (by Kizu Natsuki) Goods

It’s time for another Goods post! I guess it was pretty obvious that this time it would be all about Given, one of the most popular shows of the season. (For good reasons!)



Manga

Given manga volume 1 Current price 650 yen

Given manga volume 2 Current price 650 yen

Given manga volume 3 Current price 650 yen

Given manga volume 4 Current price 680 yen

Given manga volume 5 Current price 720 yen

Artbook

Given Illustrations Current price 2400 yen

CD

Anime Opening “Kizuato” by CENTIMILLIMENTAL:
Limited Edition with Blu-Ray and randomly selected anime character cover Current price 1852 yen
Regular Edition Current price 926 yen

Anime Ending and Episode 9 Insert Song “Marutsuke / Fuyu no Hanashi”:
Limited Edition with Blu-Ray and Given band t-shirt Current price 4907 yen
Regular Edition Current price 1667 yen

Drama CD volume 1 “Simple edition” with reworked cover Current price 2800 yen

Drama CD volume 2:
Regular Edition Current price 3000 yen
Live Edition with a bonus song sung by Mafuyu Current price 3500 yen

Drama CD volume 3 Current price 3000 yen

Drama CD volume 4 Current price 3000 yen

Anime DVD and Blu-Ray

Volume 1 Limited Release:
DVD Current price 5500 yen
Blu-Ray Current price 6500 yen

Volume 2 Limited Release:
DVD Current price 6500 yen
Blu-Ray Current price 7500 yen

Volume 3 Limited Release:
DVD Current price 6500 yen
Blu-Ray Current price 7500 yen

Volume 4 Limited Release:
DVD Current price 6500 yen
Blu-Ray Current price 7500 yen

Limited Complete Edition with exclusive LP cover bonus:
DVD Current price 27390 yen
Blu-Ray Current price 31770 yen

The limited complete edition comes with a tote bag, can badges and this exclusive LP cover art that casually rips your heart out:

Merchandise

Bangle & Clear Art Panel Current price 5520 yen at 18% off

Charm Strap Mafuyu Deformation Ver. Current price 410 yen at 18% off

Charm Strap Ritsuka Deformation Ver. Current price 410 yen at 18% off

Charm Strap Haruki Deformation Ver. Current price 410 yen at 18% off

Charm Strap Akihiko Deformation Ver. Current price 410 yen at 18% off

Ballpoint Pen Mafuyu Deformation Ver. Current price 492 yen at 18% off

Ballpoint Pen Ritsuka Deformation Ver. Current price 492 yen at 18% off

Ballpoint Pen Haruki Deformation Ver. Current price 492 yen at 18% off

Ballpoint Pen Akihiko Deformation Ver. Current price 492 yen at 18% off

Mirror Mafuyu Deformation Ver. Current price 656 yen at 18% off

Mirror Ritsuka Deformation Ver. Current price 656 yen at 18% off

Mirror Haruki Deformation Ver. Current price 656 yen at 18% off

Mirror Akihiko Deformation Ver. Current price 656 yen at 18% off

Here’s a link to the full listing on CDJapan, including items which are already sold out or so new that I wasn’t able to add them to the post yet!


As always, I can’t guarantee for the prices and availability which can be changed by the stores at any given (huehueh-… sorry) time.

Where to LEGALLY read and buy English manga ebooks online

After Manga Rock, a scanlation aggregator website and app that provided access to pirated English manga and even offered paid services, was pulled into the spotlight by Irodori Comics CEO On Takahashi on Twitter, the website has announced that they will take their app and website offline soon and offered an apology to artists and publishers.

(Sorry, I’m laughing here, cuz that’s pretty much like “hey, sorry I stole and sold your car, but I’ll just keep the cash and awkwardly walk away.”)

Many are now arguing that such aggregator websites can only exist, because English publishers take their sweet time publishing localized manga, and many still don’t offer them online or for a considerably high price. While I agree with these arguments, I also want to point out and sum up the many websites you can now buy and read digital English manga, so everyone can know their options and actually support their favorite artists!

Manga Plus

Manga+ may be the website that was talked about the most in the past months since it went online. It’s a website by Shueisha and offers weekly English (and Spanish) releases of Shounen Jump manga. Shounen Jump is THE shounen manga magazine that brought you most of the worldwide popular series like Dragonball, Naruto or One Piece. They upload new releases at the same time as they come out in Japan and you can read the latest chapters for free (that’s right, FREE).

Renta!

Renta started out as a Japanese ebook website, but launched their English website in 2011 where they publish English releases of manga mainly targeted at women (meaning romance and Boys Love). Aside from buying either single chapters or full volumes, you can also rent them for 48h for a smaller price.

futekiya

futekiya is a Boys Love manga publisher that offers a monthly subscription model where you (currently) pay 6.99 USD a month to get access to all available manga on their platform. But if you want to check them out before you decide to sign up for a paid subscription, you can also read selected chapters for free!

BOOK☆WALKER

BOOK☆WALKER is KADOKAWA’s official bookstore and app for reading digital Manga & Light Novels worldwide. I only knew them from Japanese releases so far and am pleasantly surprised that they offer manga in English as well! They apparently offer a few titles for free with a new selection every month, so check them out!
(I originally wanted to include ComicWalker in this list as well, but they only have a VERY limited selection of releases…)

Crunchyroll

SURPRISE, didn’t guess that one, huh? Aside from anime, Crunchyroll also offers a bunch of manga, some even as simulpub, which you can read for free or with their regular premium subscription (pro tip: for the yearly premium subscription you pay less than 8 USD per month!). But their web reader is still Flash and their reader app is… uh… let’s not talk about that…

Manga.Club

Manga.Club offers many chapters for free, some you can read only with special tickets you will get after signing up (also for free) and some chapters can only be purchased with money. A look at their front page suggests that they mostly offer manga targeted at girls and women, but they also offer Shounen and Seinen manga.

SuBLime

SuBLime is a BL manga publisher that mostly offers print releases, but also offers many titles as ebooks, and even a PDF version of the manga is included in the purchase at their own online store!

Juné Manga

Juné offers a bunch of Boys Love manga in both print and digital form, and for the ebook you can even choose which file format you want! You can download versions for PC, smartphone or even your Kindle from their website!

MangaCat.io NEW

MangaCat.io is a new digital manga service that is still in it’s alpha phase, but still has a lot to offer! You can read manga on a per-chapter base like on Renta, and it just so happens that I’m translating the horror/romantic comedy series “Ghost Wife” by Wakasa Takeshi for their platform, which I totally recommend. ? (I’ll also start working on a BL series for their website soon, which I will announce later on Twitter!)


Of course big stores like Amazon or Rakuten also offer manga ebooks, but those are pretty much a given, so I won’t elaborate on them. This list is in no way complete, but those websites are the best ones I could think of.

To sum things up, ebook releases are very popular with Boys Love publishers, I wonder why. ?
But Shueisha also made a big step in trying to beat down piracy of Shounen Jump titles! I hope those services will stay around and grow for a very long time!

Do you know any more websites that release Japanese manga in English? Let me know in the comments, or tell me on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram!

[How To] Learn Japanese with Manga

We all know them: cringy weeaboos who say nothing but “kawaii”, “sugoi” or “daisuki”, because they picked up those few words while watching anime and think they just learned Japanese. Don’t be that cringy weeaboo, study USEFUL Japanese instead and become so fluent that no Japanese will ever tell you “Nihongo jouzu desune!” anymore.

Now, there are quite a few online courses for you to choose from, but like with all foreign languages, you need to practice them in order to actually be able to use them. And the one thing you need to practice the most is kanji. Kanji, kanji, kanji, there are just too many of them and let’s be real, you will never learn them all, not even Japanese know all of them, they regularly use dictionaries instead.

But we’re only motivated to study when it’s fun, amirite? so why not study by reading manga in Japanese, amirite? But there are SO many manga, how could we possibly find the one that’s right for us?

My first tip for anyone who has just started studying Japanese and wants to practice basic grammar and vocabulary is that they should imagine themselves on the same level as a Japanese elementary schooler. Of course, actual Japanese kids are more fluent than you, but these kids use easy words and easy grammar. A logical conclusion is that manga with many young characters will have lots of dialogues with easy grammar. So choose manga with many young characters.

My second tip is that there are many manga with furigana, which means that next to the kanji will be text that will tell you how to read that kanji. These manga are ideal for beginners. Furigana are common in manga targeted at a young audience, like shoujo manga or shounen manga. But shounen manga, which regularly have an adventurous or magical setting, will use lots of weird words you won’t need or will actually learn in the beginning of your journey. And romance shoujo manga have a lot of characters using slang, which isn’t really useful for you in the beginning either.

My third tip is to use a translation app like Google Translate or Yomiwa (only iOS but my favorite app tbh) to translate words you don’t yet know.
With Yomiwa you can make the app translate words directly from your camera or an image on your phone, and it has a database of words with usage examples.
And here is how you use Google Translate to translate text from your phone’s camera.

In order to help you find your way into the world of manga in Japanese, I’ve made a list with a selected few titles consisting of 1) manga with kids, 2) boys love manga with kids and 3) boys love manga that just have furigana for the heck of it.

(At the Amazon links you can usually find sample pages you can check out in case you want to get any of them from CDJapan!)

Manga with kids

Sodatechi Maou! by Iijima Kosuke

What happens when three demon kings raise a little human kid in the underworld? They become pampering, hilarious daddies of course ? A series completed in 8 volumes about three guys trying to raise a toddler together. My personal highlight is the tiny romance later in the series.

Get it on:
CDJapan
Amazon
Kindle

Gakuen Babysitters by Tokeino Hari

Some of you might know the anime, and if you don’t, I definitely recommend it! It’s pure sugar with a side of many many adorable babies! Gakuen Babysitters is about a pair of brothers, older brother Ryuuichi in middle school and younger brother Koutarou just learning how to talk, who lost their parents and are now taken in by an old lady who lost her son and his wife in the same plane accident. The lady is the principal of a school with a babysitter club where the members take care of the teachers’ kids, and Ryuuichi becomes the first and only club member. It makes you laugh, it makes you cry, but most of all it makes you squeal because all the babies are so cute! The series currently has 19 volumes and is still ongoing.

Get it on:
CDJapan
Amazon
Kindle

Maou-sama to Shun-kun by monaca

Some of you might know author monaca by her other pen name Nanoka with works like Shiawase Gohan – Maki to Hanazawa! Shun-kun is a toddler who lives with his grandparents, and Mao, a demon lord who’s head over heals for the cute kid (not in THAT way, you little scoundrels) and abandons the demon world to play with Shun-kun every single day. This series currently has 3 volumes and sadly updates very slowly ;-;

Get it on:
CDJapan
Amazon
Kindle

Boys Love manga with kids

W (Double) Kosodate Riiman no Nichijou by Nanjo Tsugumi

Single daddies? Single daddies! I love BL stories about single daddies! And there’s even two of them in this manga! Okay, one of them is actually the kid’s uncle who took the boy in after he lost his parents and at the same time the ability to speak, but that just makes the story a little more interesting, right?

Get it on:
CDJapan
Amazon
Kindle

Hinadori wa Shiokaze ni Madoromu by Minazuki Yuu

This manga is about two brothers who lose their family in an accident and move to an unknown seaside town. Tired by the move, they stroll through the neighborhood looking for something to eat and find a little restaurant with a charming owner. This one has a bunch of drama and a really good story, very unlike most of the other manga in this list!

Get it on:
CDJapan
Amazon
Kindle

Sekai wa Shippo de Dekiteiru by Honjo Rie

Riku is one of the last two Japanese wolves (wolf people who can shape shift) after his parents die in an accident (wow that’s a popular trope in this post lol). In order for him to learn what he needs to know as a wolf, a young man from the bureau of animal people affairs (I guess that’s how you could translate it?) brings the young boy to the second wolf man, a good-looking author who lives in the forest, to receive help from him. And he falls in love with the author’s fluffy tail, I guess.

Get it on:
CDJapan
Amazon
Kindle

Boys Love manga that have furigana just for the heck of it

Tanutanu by Nekono Mariko

Dude with a dramatic past runs over a tanuki with his bike and takes it home to care for it and OBVIOUSLY the tanuki can shape shift into a cute young man, duh. After said young tanuki man pressures the guy into letting him live in his apartment because he is oh so hurt after the accident, what could possibly go wrong?

Get it on:
CDJapan
Amazon
Kindle

Ganbare Moroboshi-kun by Natsuki Zippo

Hmmmm… I guess the best way to describe these two would be Kashima-kun and Hori-chan-sempai from Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun, but gay? Moroboshi-kun is the school prince, adored by all the girls who chase after him 24/7, so in order to be able to go home in peace, he hides in the gym’s storage room after school. Until one day, another guy climbs in through the window and Moroboshi-kun promises him to help him confess to his crush.

Get it on:
CDJapan
Amazon
Kindle

Renchin! by Kakine

This chin is the chin you are expecting, you little pervert, it’s the sound a microwave makes when it’s finished heating up your food! (“to microwave something” literally translates to “chin suru” lol)
A construction worker who lives alone and makes his lunch box by himself every day suddenly gets a visit from a TV announcer who says he wants to try his food. The dude gets hooked on it despite having a hard time actually telling apart what tastes “good” and “bad” and visits the man on the construction site he works at to sneak a bite from his lunch box.

Get it on:
CDJapan
Amazon
Kindle

Fudanshi-kun no Honey Days by Yodogawa Yuo

A dirty, dirty book about a dirty, dirty high school fudanshi getting his hair cut by a dirty, dirty hair stylist. This one was pretty popular when it first came out, but do you know that it got a second volume called Fudanshi-kun no Citrus Days not too long ago?? (They both also have two really good drama CDs I listened to a lot when they came out!)

Get it on:
CDJapan
Amazon
Kindle (if you have Kindle Unlimited, you can get the first volume for free!)

I also recommend reading manga together while reading the drama CD, which is basically the manga as an audio book performed by Japanese voice actors! But that is for another post ;D

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Boys Love Art Books (and more)

When I was attending Y/Con, a convention dedicated to queer anime and manga in Paris, last year to meet Scarlet Beriko, the most requested thing she was asked to release was an art book, a collection of her illustrations. Her editor Kumagai, who was with her during the event, mentioned that it’s become very uncommon for artists to publish art books in Japan nowadays, they’re usually only made for anniversaries or other special occasions. So when the news was out that there would be a Yondaime Ooyamato Tatsuyuki art book being released this year for her 11th debut anniversary (fun fact: it’s the 11th cuz everyone simply forgot last year LOL), I congratulated her and jokingly mentioned the many requests she’d gotten for it in Paris, to which she returned that those requests are actually the reason why this book was made! So heck yeah, more power to us ?

I feel like recently a few more BL artists have started releasing art books again, like the upcoming one for Given which just started as a TV anime on Crunchyroll, or the already released art book Mirror by Takarai Rihito, so I got curious and collected links to all the art books I could find.

Just click on the title on the image to get to the CDJapan product page!

BL (Boys Love) Creators: Amakute eros na sekai wo egaku 67 BL manga-ka

This one has illustrations of many many MANY many artists (67, to be exact), so I can’t list them all, but there’s art by Enzou (Mothers Spirit), Arii Memeko (Hitorijime My Hero), Ogeretsu Tanaka (Yarichin Bitch-bu) and Scarlet Beriko (Yondaime Ooyamato Tatsuyuki). A true gem.

Given Illustration Collection

The Given Illustration Collection by Kizu Natsuki, the original manga artist, will come out sometime in July 2019 just in time for the start of the anime!

Yondaime Ooyamato Tatsuyuki Premium Collection: Motsunabe to Regent

MTR, as Scarlet Beriko calls it, will contain a collection of illustrations from the manga and twitter and a bonus manga about Nozomi and Tatsuyuki doing the do ?

Yoneda Kou 10th anniversary fanbook

Earlier this year it was announced that Yoneda Kou’s current series, Saezuru Tori wa Habatakanai or Twittering Birds Never Fly, will receive an anime movie adaption that will come out in Japan in winter 2019. The fanbook has illustrations of Saezuru and her previous works.

Doukyuusei (Classmates) Animation Visual Book

This one is hella pretty, just like the actual movie, so just believe when I tell you you won’t regret this purchase. Like, ever.

Doukyuusei (Classmates): Sotsugyo Album (revised and enlarged edition)

I just… I mean, Nakamura Asumiko… this thing is stuffed with illustrations from the manga, what else do I have to say?

Nakamura Asumiko – Otona no Nurie

Otona no Nurie is her first coloring book, featuring all new illustrations. Features a color illustration gallery, making-of color illustrations, and comments by the artist. Comes with dress-up doll.

Kii Kanna artbook: queue

This artbook came out at the same time as volume 4 of Harukaze no Ètranger just a few weeks before the Umibe no Ètranger anime movie will get released.

Takarai Rihito Illustration Book “Mirror”

Takarai Rihito had some major developments from her beginnings with Seven Days all the way to Ten Count, and this book documents them all. (And the cover design is hella pretty)

Nekota Yonezoh Art Work Book “Gaze”

This one doesn’t just have illustrations, it also has a bonus comic for Hidoku Shinaide!

Sakyo Aya Illustration Book “Kuroneko Zukan”

“Zukan” means picture book, illustrated reference book or field guide, so there will be a ton of Kuroneko, to say the least lol

Moegi Yu Illustration Book “Wedding Night”

Just like Nekota’s art book this one comes with a bonus story for Katekyo as well! Did you know that Nekota, Moegi and Panco. (Hinekure Chaser) are friends and regularly table together at doujin events?

Kumota Haruko Original Drawings

This art book contains illustrations for Fune wo Amu, Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu and includes an A3 sized poster!

BANANA FISH illustration Book: ANGEL EYES [reprinted edition]

Originally released in 1994 the rare illustration book by BANANA FISH features new designs by Akimi Yoshida specially illustrated just for this release, unreleased illustration stories of Ash and Eiji’s summer in Cape Cod, front page collections, and memorial shots of Ash and Eiji.

BANANA FISH Official Guide Book: REBIRTH [Perfect Edition]

Includes a cover illustration gallery with cover illustrations from all 105 episodes and 2 reversible colored posters featuring rare illustrations. Note that this book includes spoilers on how the original story ends, so read the manga first!

BANANA FISH TV Anime Official Guide: Moment

Official guide book of the anime includes a story guide, character guide, art board collection and a B3 poster illustrated by Hayashi Akemi.

Yuri!!! on ICE SELECT BOOK

A select artwork book featuring 250 pages of animation cell and production art.

Tsurune – Kazemai Koukou Kyuudoubu Original Drawings

Tsurune isn’t exactly boys love but it’s still right up our alley, amirite?

Tsurune – Kazemai Koukou Kyuudoubu Illustration Works

Another piece of non-BL but you can never go wrong with anything KyoAni after all ?


If you know of any other recent BL art books, feel free to let me and everyone else know in the comments!


And I already got two suggestions by @minmayo8 and two more by @iamvassalady on Twitter, thank you so much!

Yuuutsu no Asa NOBLE COLORS SPECIAL BOOK

This artbook by Hidaka Shoko contains illustrations, a bonus paper collection, notes and TWO bonus stories, now that’s generous!

Danshi Zukan – Boys Art Illustrator File

Similar to the first artbook on this list, this one contains art of pretty boys by 66 different artists like Sachimo, Tamekou and Hasumi Hana!

Arii Memeko Illustration Works: MEMECO’S WONDERLAND

MEMECO’S WONDERLAND features “Hitorijime Boyfriend” and “Hitorijime My Hero” illustrations in color, other BL and NL stories in color, new illustrations and an interview.

Haruko Kumota BL Original Illustrations: Boy’s Life

As opposed to the mentioned above, this one contains almost 300 illustrations in color & monochrome for her BL works like Itoshi no Nekokke, Nobara and Shinjuku Lucky Hole, and more!

Keep them coming! (╯≧∇≦)╯︵ ┻━┻